Blending my two passions: day trading and traveling, has been a rewarding experience to say the least. However, the two require a nice mutual relationship in order to be fruitful and to feed off of each other. As day trading was financing my freedom to travel, not to mention my travel itself, I had to consider carefully how to merge the two for ultimate success.
The Distance of Travel and the Speed of Trade
Because you aren’t sitting on Wall Street and trading stocks close to the exchange, you need to consider how you and your computer can be physically far away, while also maintaining close proximity to the trading servers in order to optimize speed. As the The Financial Times says:
“Being faster than rivals to the best price – that is, having the lowest “latency” – is thus crucial in today’s markets.”
If the evocative New York Times best seller Flash Boys, by Michael Lewis, has taught us anything, especially about the elusive world of trading, it’s that speed matters significantly. Of course Lewis specifically focused on High Frequency Trading (HFT), but you don’t have to be a HFT trader for speed to matter. Large trading firms pay more for their computers to be located as close as possible to the exchange’s matching engine, a tactic called co-location, for a day trader, being able to optimize for speed means that you should to invest in a good quality dedicated server within close proximity to your market.
Other Tricks of the Trade
Of course speed is only one factor to successfully merging travel and trade. One major component to my successful merging of these two passions has been my self-discipline. I commit myself to a certain amount of hours per day to work. Sitting down to work in some of the most beautiful places in the world has its perks and is definitely better than an office. Nevertheless, self-discipline to set a rigid work schedule is part of the key to achieving a life of freedom.
Another disadvantage of a mobile office can be unreliable internet connection, even in Wi-Fi zones. Just like speed is essential for successful day trading, so too is a reliable internet connection equally important. It would also be profitable, then, to invest in a good portable satellite internet system.
I also often buy a local SIM card and make sure I get 4G connection. I can then make my phone a hotspot and it’s usually fast enough to get done the things I need to.
Travel Tip: Don’t Be Afraid to Be Alone