Why Vacations Rock for Private Investors

Note: This piece is for entertainment only, it is NOT investing advice. Do your own research before investing in any stock.

Vacations are not only fun, they can be important to the private investor.


Trevi Fountain in Rome, with my husband, Marc.

His iPhone took this picture. It also provided a great walking map app for Rome.

 Forbes recently published this article about why vacations are good for business ideas, specifically start ups.

Forbes article

OK. So, maybe you are not a programmer, and you have no desire to start a business. Just because you may not be interested in manning a startup, does not mean this information does not apply to you. I have gotten some of my best investment ideas – on vacation. As the article states, a vacation allows you time to free your mind. When your mind is free – you can look at the world a bit differently. You may notice things you never noticed in the hustle and bustle of work and your daily life. It matters not so much where you wander, but that you allow your mind to wander.

Ideas that came to me on vacation

AAPL – no matter what continent we traveled, my husband’s iPhone worked – can’t say the same for some of my android equipment. And we saw iPhones and iphone equipment everywhere.
Solution: buy an iPhone, an ipad, and more Apple stock.

NFLX – like one of the founders, a former fellow teacher, I was super annoyed by overdue video charges I rang up on a summer holiday. I admit, I was out of my routine, and being a bit lazy. But, seriously, the charge was more than the movie cost to buy. Also noticed my daughter and many of her friends were ditching video store rentals for Netflix.
Solution: ditch Blockbuster, use Netflix, and buy Netflix stock

SBUX- no matter what country I found myself in, Starbucks was BUSY – people of all ages and incomes, sipping coffee and eating scones. I detest coffee, but I sill found myself drawn to the atmosphere. Always nice, well placed locations, and good service.
Solution: buy Starbucks



Granddaughter Gwen, at Disneyland Paris in the middle pic,

and us at Disneyland in Anaheim on the left, Grandpa  and Gwen ride the teacups


DIS – walking around Downtown Disney in Anaheim, I noticed how diverse Disney had become. Theme parks, toys, movies, TV stations, even ESPN. Disney was also on the rise internationally, with new parks opening. Disney is like a consumer discretionary ETF within itself.
Solution: buy Disney stock


FB – my family is spread around the world, and we keep in touch via Facebook. I noticed that this was even more important to me when I was traveling. I checked in with the family, and shared vacation photos. And so did my friends. And so did their friends. My younger colleagues tell me they do almost everything through Facebook – Evites, social planning, shopping, listening to music, sending special event gift cards etc.
Solution: buy Facebook stock



London, in the rain, of course 

Your idea may not be a blue chip stock. It might be a tiny little stock no one in your country has ever heard of. Which brings me to Monitise – a UK company.



The 1p egg was as elusive as the Easter Bunny – at least for me – others had great success! 

A London vacation is how I originally found MONI/MONIF stock. (I was trying to purchase a 1p Easter egg off of a billboard, but my US phone wouldn’t work) I was super impressed by the technology provided by Simply Tap – a subsidiary of Monitise. Then Monitise bought Clairmail – a company I was watching, hoping for it to go public. As I researched Monitise, I really liked their approach to mobile money.
Solution: buy Monitise
Note: It sells under the stock ticker MONIF in the US. (MONI in the UK)



Maybe investing in newer speculative type stocks like FB or the OTC stock MONIF feels too risky. In that case, stick with the tried and true, like Disney. If one invested conservatively and bought 100 shares of Disney at about $25.00 per share 5 years ago today (7/1/09)  it would have cost $2,500.00. Today, as I write this (7/1/14) Disney trades for about $86.00 per share – that is $8,600.00. That is $6,100.00 for the vacation fund, without even taking dividends into account. And now, we all know how important, and profitable, vacations can be.

Please, thoroughly research any company you plan to invest in. I can’t stress this enough!

Full disclosure: Author is long AAPL, DIS, FB, SBUX, and MONIF as of this posting.

Update 7/1/2014

After reading the article, my husband pointed out two I had forgotten about. Ford and Bank of America. We got a Ford Escape rental car on a Disney vacation. Loved it. Upon returning home, I did some research and bought Ford. After a trip to Europe, when our BofA ATM and credit cards worked more often than any of the other cards we carried – I did some research and bought Bank of America.

Also long F and BAC. 

PS. Sold Netflix in early 2014 when the valuation got too crazy, and kept me up at night. These investments took place over the course of a decade – it doesn’t happen overnight.

Love this book. Read it, learn from it. (May want to ignore the blatant advertising for Motley Fool)

Warren Buffett Invests Like a Girl: And Why You Should Too

Kindle Edition: Check Amazon for Pricing Digital Only

2 thoughts on “Why Vacations Rock for Private Investors

  1. Ms JB, interesting blog in regard to investing. I hope you and Family are keeping fine and fit.We miss your contribution to the Moni BB at LSE. Are you still with us? Or have you finally departed, to greener pastures? All the best and continue to inspire .

    • Hey! Sorry, I got really busy as I decided to retire from teaching! The paperwork – OMG!

      Yes, I’m still holding the stock. I’m sad that this company seems to have been too early with their technology and didn’t secure it well. It has been the poorest execution of some of the best banking technology I have ever seen. The only chance I think they had was moving to Silicon Valley – and they chose to stay London based.

      Maybe I’ll stop by the LSE board in the near future.
      Hope this find you and all at the LSE board well.

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