My Story

Engineered to explore

Hello! I’m Rachel Means from Means to Explore, and I want to see the world! I enjoy exploring new places and helping others plan, save, and go on their own adventures.

I don’t wander the earth endlessly, and I don’t plan to. I use my time off wisely and plan epic journeys, but I also love sleeping in my own bed again when it’s all over.

I’m a licensed engineer and used to design bridges for a living. Now, I run my own business!

A woman in a blue jacket smiles from her seat on the train
First trip to Europe in 2015

I’m also a planner who knows how to budget. My husband and I paid off 3 cars and our quarter-million dollars student loan debt in 8.5 years, while also saving for a house down payment and still managing to start globe-trotting.

It wasn’t an accident or luck that paid off that debt, and we didn’t live in a state of complete deprivation, either. It was a well-executed plan (most of the time), and I have the spreadsheets to prove it.

We prioritized and budgeted for travel and paying down debt. It’s important to set realistic goals and timelines and to realize you still need to live while you’re paying down debt.

A woman in a green jacket smiles from a brown bench in the lobby of the Mammoth Cave National Park Visitor Center
First small trip to Mammoth Cave National Park in 2013

The goal of Means to Explore is to share knowledge and experiences to help you save for and plan a fun and stress-free vacation without breaking the bank or destroying your credit. Affordable means something different to everyone, and I cover everything from luxury to free.

A couple smile for the camera with Neuschwanstein Castle, a green forest, and blue skies in the background
Visiting Germany in 2019

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