Ben Hanna ‘07: Unlikely connections Part 3

I generally refuse to lock myself into a lifestyle that limits my options. Getting a mortgage on a house and a loan for a car means that I have to pay those back with a set amount each month for the next several years. Living without these things means that if I have money saved up and a desire to stop working for a while, I can. Ben Hanna '07, photo 6

This lifestyle seemed ludicrous to my parents and friends when I started it, but it has caught the attention of some people in Los Angeles. Last month a production company in LA flew me down to meet with their V.P. of Original Programming to discuss a new TV show. They are calling it “The CouchSurfer”, and in association with they proposed a show to me that will be one of those “can’t pass up” opportunities. The offer was this: travel around the Mediterranean Sea, couchsurfing with a different host every few days for 8-10 weeks. I would be traveling with a camera crew, an audio guy, and a producer. The producer would travel ahead to set up boats and transport for upcoming adventures that I came up with while talking with my hosts.

The production company is selling the show to channels such as the Travel Channel, National Geographic, Discovery Channel, and the History Channel. Whichever network picks us up would change the focus of the show. Travel would be travel and travel lifestyle focused, National Geographic would focus on the locations and the nature, Discovery would be more adventure travel, and the History Channel would focus on the historical aspects of whatever location I happened to be in.

I started off paying to travel, now I am working for CouchSurfing and getting paid to help others travel and meet new people (and relocating to exciting parts of the world every three months). If the show goes through, then I will be getting paid to be myself and do what I love to do. I can’t think of anything better!

Ben at his "office" in Costa Rica

Ben at his office in Costa Rica


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