All posts by James

My experience with Grabr.


PictureHilton Vienna

While I would not be a good candidate for most of the cosmetic surgery options available, I did try Grabr and I wanted to share my experience with you especially since I am recommending it as a great way to subsidize the cost of your overseas Medical Tourism cost. 

In case you did not see my original post regarding Grabr, you can read it here.

I recently went to Europe and I arranged to deliver a VR helmet to a European buyer in Austria who wanted a product that was only available in South Korea and the US. I told him when I was going, and offered to bring the good for $50 and and that it retailed for 399 along with a little bit in cash for sales tax. I purchased the product via Amazon and had it delivered within two days without any issues. We communicated which hotel I was staying, when my flight arrived, and when he could come by to pick it up. When the time came, he showed up, inspected the item, and within the Grabr app marked the item as delivered. 

​What you will notice about this story is about how incredibly undramatic the whole event was and how easy it is to execute. I travel quite lightly, and bringing an extra item was really no problem at all and made it possible for me to go shopping later in my trip so that I don’t worry if I have the extra room in my luggage . Did it make me rich? well no. However, I did want to show you how easy the experience was and if you are going to an international destination, that it is an easy way for you to make some extra money and ensuring you have the room in your luggage to bring back some souvenirs.

I can highly recommend Grabr as a way to help subsidize your Medical Travel because it is so easy to manage. 

With this link, if you bring 10 items you can earn an extra $100 on top of your fees. 


Utilizing one of your best assets… cash

If you are choosing a surgeon , there is usually a large gulf of education between the provider and patient which can be very intimidating for some women. While it is true, that your doctor does understand much more about the process you have one advantage during the selection process, your money. You have it, they want it, and you should not give it up until you feel comfortable.

A trick perpetrated early in the sales process by many cosmetic surgeons is “Are you a candidate?” Ultimately, this question is meant to destabilize your decision making skills because you have to “prove” to them that you are worthy of paying them what they want. Could you imagine a contractor saying “Are you a candidate to have your windows installed? Are you a candidate to get a new washer dryer?” Even bankers don’t usually start with “are you a candidate for our loans?” When you see this question, prepare yourself.

Even though you may click on that link or make the phone call, understand that this is a process you may not be entirely familiar with and the first time you do anything you are unlikely to be very successful. However, for them this is a well choreographed dance to get you to spend money with them, so I urge you to be prepared. There may be specific medical risks that have to be addressed, such as high blood pressure or smoking, which could affect the likelihood of a successful procedure but go into your appointment with a clear idea of what you want to pay and that as long as you are the customer you have options and should be aware of them. While it is important to be more informed than combative,  do not allow yourself to become confused during the initial consultation process.  

Additionally, if you need to receive a medical loan, you are at an even psychologically weaker decision making space. It is much more important to go into your initial appointment with options that you can afford so you are not so dependent on even more third-party approval so you can take action with your own life.

If you are preparing to sit down for a consultation with a plastic surgeon, be sure to take into account exactly how much money you are willing to spend for your surgery, what questions you want to have answered about the procedure, and specific questions about why this cosmetic surgeon is the best surgeon for you and this procedure. I hope this helps makes you a better prepared healthy and conscientious patient. 

What I appreciate about Women Surgeons

The vast majority of cosmetic surgeons are men while the vast majority of patients are women, why is that? There are two main reasons that come to mind.

The first reason is that there are more surgeons in general who are men.  While there are many women in Medicine (Pediatrics, Family Medicine, Psychiatry, OB/GYN etc.) women are less well represented in the surgical field.  To become a surgeon you must undergo additional schooling and be accepted into a surgical department where the competition is especially fierce to be given access to practice. While there are women who are willing to become surgeons, it is an exhausting profession which offers less psychic satisfaction than other fields in medicine. 

Second reason, is that there are a lot of women who prefer men to be their cosmetic surgeons. Men are perceived as more confident and authoritative during cosmetic surgery interviews and makes the woman feel more comfortable and secure about her surgical provider. While women surgeons commonly claim on their websites that being a woman helps them understand their patients more, it is not clear that women particularly care about their feelings being understood rather than feel confident in their surgeon to produce the outcome they want. If you are a cosmetic surgery candidate, you are likely dealing with a certain amount of self-doubt and wanting a strong male presence to totally take you away from your dilemma can seem alluring.
 
According to A Billion Wicked Thoughts, a book written by Google engineers who have gone through our collective internet search history and uncovered our truest thoughts, Surgeon is one of the top 5 most common sexual fantasies for women within romance novels. While I am not a woman, I can imagine that part of their appeal is because their fantasy surgeon is authoritative, educated and competent. Many of these traits that may be considered attractive in men are perceived in women as being bitchy and cold even by other women . 

Now that we have established that, I have noticed female surgeons have tended to specialize in just one or a few areas within cosmetic surgery while men commonly claim to be excellent at everything(which is impossible). 

Unlike their male counterparts, women surgeons tend to be much more humble about their skills as a surgeon and specialize according to their niche.  (Just like their patients, women understand and experience self doubt.) During my time as a Medical Travel Facilitator, it has been annoying talking to male surgeons about what procedures they are most competent in (usually the most advanced and expensive) because they like to talk about how many great things they have accomplished. If your procedure is very specific (i.e. removing fat on your torso after child-birth) you can commonly find more guidance and assistance from a female surgeon who understands deeply their niche procedure and specializes in this niche. 

Second, to survive as a woman and getting through the additional steps to become a surgeon is a very difficult endeavour especially when you are one of the few women in your program, and even more true overseas which have more traditional stances with regard to gender roles. It would be a mistake to discount the experience she had to go through to become a recognized surgeon because her road has been tougher than a male in an equivalent position. Often our preconceived notions of what makes a great surgeon blind us to making the best possible decision for ourselves. 

If you are searching for an appropriate cosmetic surgeon for your needs, I think you are doing yourself a disservice my searching only for those cosmetic surgeons who appear to be confident and competent. Much of the false bravado that is ascribed to surgeons may better be placed in a female surgeon who is more humble and has a deep understanding of the procedure they are doing. 

Make more money…  Opening bank accounts

​Are you building up funds for your cosmetic surgery? Not everyone has great credit, but I want to share another way to achieve your dreams without accruing debt. If you are deciding to build up your surgery/medical vacation fund, I highly recommend looking into “churning”  bank accounts to build up your surgery fund.

Similar to utilizing the credit card bonus, banks want your business and are willing to give you money to open accounts with them, sometimes they will offer you more than the amount you deposit. Often, you will have to deposit $500 or more per account to receive the sign-up bonus, so you will need to have some money to start, but it is highly beneficial for the woman who is looking to generate extra income for their goals. 

My favorite site that helps you decide by state what is available is

https://www.doctorofcredit.com/best-bank-account-bonuses/

There they show you what is available nationally as well as what banks in your state are offering bonuses that you can take advantage of. 

Very often, at the end of Fiscal Quarters(3/31,6/31,9/31,12/31), banks will offer deadlines on their bonuses to improve their new account sign ups to show off to their investors their quarterly growth. So if you are looking for the best possible bonuses, taking a look during this time will be your peak opportunity for bonus hunting. 

Here is the catch, some banks will ask you to start a direct deposit agreement which can be tedious to unwind and set up with your employer. However, you can often ask a loved one to send you ACH payments in place of the direct deposit so that you receive your bonus, because there is no difference between an ACH from an employer and another person. However,  it is easier to avoid bank accounts that require you sign up for direct deposits to qualify for their offer. 

After you sign up, you want to make sure that you received the bonus and that if you close the account within a specified time that they do not cancel your bonus. Usually if you close your account and reap your bonus, you are safe after a period of six months to close your account and return your balance along with your surgery bonus to your main account. 

If you are looking to afford cosmetic surgery and avoid debt as much as possible this is just one extra avenue for you to help achieve your goals. 

Make money during your Travel- Credit Cards

One of the easiest ways you can earn hundreds of extra dollars during your journey is to open one or more credit cards that have a bonus attached based on amount of spending in your first few months.

It is known as “churning” and involves opening a credit card or two where spending $1,000 or $3,000 within three months can yield a $500 bonus or more depending on the card. While credit card debt is one of the worst ways to be in debt, “churning” is one of the best and easiest ways for you to make money during your Medical Travel. 

Naturally, if you have better credit the more likely you would be able to qualify for a better card with a better initial sign-up bonus. However, unless you have particularly poor credit, you should be able to qualify for one or two cards that contain a bonus for spending within the first three months. 

What the best cards are for bonuses change month to month, however here are my favorite sites for finding an appropriate credit card.

​https://www.doctorofcredit.com/best-current-credit-card-sign-bonuses/

https://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/top-credit-cards/nerdwallets-best-rewards-credit-cards/

Two things to remember:

Many of these cards carry an annual fee. Paying an annual fee is not in any of our interests and certainly does not help you make money. Be sure when you sign up to add a notification into your phone/calendar about a month before your year is up to cancel the card. Do not apply for a card in which you have to pay the fee upfront, only after one year.

Second, make sure you pay off the balance. In some cases, carrying a balance will negate the spending bonus. So once the bill comes due, just make sure you set your account to auto-pay your credit card in full. 

​I mentioned during my Grabr post, using Grabr with your new credit card is a great way in which you can achieve your early three/six month spending threshold. While you are shopping for electronics equipment for people in your destination country, use the credit cards you just received to achieve your targeted spending threshold. In addition to Grabr, you can use your credit card on your airfare,hotel, and possibly your Medical Treatment assuming the destination Doctor accepts credit cards. 

I hope presenting this option helps you make Medical Travel even more affordable and less daunting. If you thought this information was helpful, come by our Youtube channel, where we give away more valuable information for your medical journey.

Travel..Make Money- Grabr

I want to share one more way to make extra money while you are traveling to your Medical destination. 

​We are pretty fortunate to live in a time when you can shop at Midnight, and have your items delivered within two days. Furthermore, Americans are pretty fortunate that the goods we buy are generally taxed at lower rates than in other countries and are therefore much cheaper. 

People in your destination country have to pay a much higher tax on goods, especially luxury goods and electronics. What Grabr does is connect buyers in your destination country with you, so that you deliver items while on your Medical Trip and make a lot of extra easy money. 

First, you enter your trip details (date, destination) and you will be matched with buyers in foreign destinations who are where you are already heading. Second, you will see what buyers are looking for and how much they are willing to pay for delivering certain items. Third, you go purchase the item from Amazon ( or anywhere else) and figure out a time to deliver the item when you leave, most likely they will meet you at your hotel to accept the good and you can both each go your separate ways. 

The first thing I am sure you might think, is what happens if I buy the item and then they disappear? The buyer first pays and the money goes into an escrow account which is distributed when you deliver the good so you are not taking any risk in purchasing an item you do not want. It would still be recommended to take a photo of you handing off the item to your buyer so you have some documented proof that you did what you were required. 

Grabr is perfect for Medical Tourists who are traveling to high luxury tax destinations such as Brazil, Russia, and Argentina where you can make a high margin for small electronics goods that are in your luggage. For example, an Ipad in Brazil may be twice as expensive as it would be in the United States. You can make over $300 just for bringing an Iphone to Brazil during your Medical Trip!

As of this post, Grabr is offering an additional $100  if you bring 10 items to your destination. If you are traveling with your partner/care-giver and bring smaller items especially electronics, you should be able to easily bring 10 items during your Medical Trip and make an extra $500.

The next post will show you how you can make even more money while Traveling especially if you have good credit. 

Travel..Make Money- Host Airbnb

One common but still underused method of saving/earning hundreds of dollars is to place your home on Airbnb while you are away during your Medical Vacation. There is usually very little upkeep involved and if you are leaving an empty home, it is the best possible way to reduce the cost of your Medical Vacation.

Things you can do to get started:

Sign up for Airbnb today as a host. They will send out photographers and take flattering photos of your home, but not overnight, that is why you should get started as soon as possible. While you are doing research on your doctor/location it gives you a way to generate passive income while you are on your Medical Vacation. It does not happen overnight, but getting signed up today will make it much easier for you when you are ready to book your flight.

You heard horror stories? They are engrossing but also very rare and most often happens to hosts who are not paying attention to who they are hosting. You can review anyone that comes to your home and see what other hosts have thought of their stay, much easier than if you were renting. Your goal should not be to maximize earnings but someone who will give you peace of mind while you are away because you will most likely be either recuperating or enjoying your time. I recommend especially for first time Airbnb hosts is that you set your place under the market rate for your area and home. That will give you the most opportunity to choose who will be staying in your home. I recommend looking for people with existing reviews and are Airbnb hosts themselves ideally. Additionally, I try to stay away from younger guests (college aged) who might throw parties or ruin your home. If they are coming to your home for a music festival or anything that signals party, just stay away, peace of mind is worth it.

Also, find someone you trust who can clean up after the guest when they leave. You can usually find a one-time option on ​​Groupon, but I recommend you find someone in your area that can come in and clean up before you arrive back because you will most likely not be in the mood to clean while you are still recuperating. Reach out to your friends on Facebook to see if they trust anyone to clean your apartment while you are away.

It is a good idea to keep any valuables locked away while you are staying. Also, locking any rooms that are not necessary for your guests to have a good stay while you are away because it gives you peace of mind while also reducing your cleaning bill.

It is a painless and profitable way to make sure you get the possible deal during your Medical vacation and I highly recommend you start the process today to be ready when you go on your Medical trip.