A summary of all the most frequently asked questions I get from viewers, fans and critics.
How can you afford all this?
I run a YouTube channel and as a result, receive AdSense revenues every time adverts are shown by Google on top of one of my videos. This why the channel exists and how it continues to function. At the end of Q4 2019, I will make a blog post detailing my income streams over time, to provide transparency and to inspire other creators who want to make a career from video!
You ran this channel for three years before going full-time. How did you manage it?
Careful budgeting of money and time. I’ve never had a large income, and my style of travel is easily attainable to some extent if you really want it enough. With 25 days’ holiday and every weekend off work, that’s about 130 days a year you’re not required to be at work, so get off your bum and go travel…if you want it enough! I do not and have not ever borrowed money to finance any travel - this is a bad idea.
What’s the best credit card for me?
I don’t and won’t advise or sell credit cards. My credit card strategy involves having one credit card with no balance which I never use. It’s for emergencies only. Credit card companies invite you to play games with sign-up bonuses, cancelling cards and taking out new ones all the time, as well as using credit cards as your main card to rack up points. I don’t play the game and don’t advise you to either. Have you ever thought about how all that is sustainable? It works for the banks because for every ten people playing the game and winning, there’s one serious loser who played the game and lost - in big debt to the credit card companies, paying lots of interest. Suicide is considered by 50% of people in heavy debt. Like alcohol, drugs and gambling, debt ruins lives. With over 100,000 followers across all social media, I feel I have a moral responsibility not to promote this game, because some of you will lose.
There is nothing wrong with having credit cards or using them. There is nothing wrong with banks offering credit cards either. But I draw the line at being a social media influencer with an aspirational lifestyle AND selling cards with the hook that you can fly as much as I can. I have always flown lots with a modest income and so can you.
I’m starting out on YouTube - can you help me out? How do I get views and subscribers?
Keep posting! Look at the first video I ever made - it’s deeply flawed. Posting as much as you can will do two things. It’ll gradually accumulate views and feedback from viewers which you can act upon, and you should use the Analytics suite in YouTube Studio to show you which parts of the video people view the most (and least!). You should try to increase the length of time your audience stays watching each video. YouTube won’t recommend videos people click away from quickly. Post videos you’d like to watch yourself and KEEP AT IT!
Don’t airlines pay you to review them or something?
No. In any case, airlines paying people to review them is very rare. They might give a free upgrade or ticket to a reviewer, but that’s about it. Read my collaboration policy to learn more.
Do you use cash or miles?
Mostly cash. My flying habits revolve around taking diverse airlines, many of which have no mileage program to speak of. Therefore I collect fewer miles than you’d expect, especially as I don’t use credit cards.
Which frequent flyer programs are you a member of?
Quite a few, but the main two I use are British Airways Executive Club and Air New Zealand Airpoints - both because those programs offered a good route to achieving status with them for low spend and they suit my travel habits. Other FFPs may be better for you!
Why did you change from being Paul’s Trip Reports to Wingin’ It - Paul Lucas?
The original name is literally just a description of the channel. I started off the channel as a way of scrapbooking my flights without any concern for brand, audience, or anything else. Going full time, I need to use my actual name so people know who I am - as I may branch out into doing other things like writing or contributing to the media. “Wingin’ It!” is simply a catchy name reflecting the (mostly) aviation theme of the channel as well as being a reference to me - one of life’s survivors and opportunists I guess, with a great opportunity to make a lot of progress in 2019!
How do you deal with haters?
I get this question often from younger people and younger YouTubers. From my perspective, there are a few things you need to bear in mind about haters. Firstly, haters are, without exception, complete losers; they are inadequate people with insecurities, who feel unable to build themselves up and therefore look to tear others down. Therefore, a hater who passes a horrible comment at you has already lost - they have already outed themselves as a hater and therefore a loser, and you win by default. You don’t even need to do anything to win! Why would you want to take on board anything they say?