After graduating from university in England, Johnny Ward booked a one-way flight to New York City. "I literally left 12 hours after my last exam," he tells CNBC. "And then I never really came home. That was about ten-and-a-half years ago."
Ward, who grew up on welfare in Ireland, has always been fascinated with travel. "We had three TV channels when I was a kid and I would end up watching all these travel shows," he says.
"I would see the Great Wall of China or the Sydney Opera House and just looking at them, it could be another planet — it was so unattainable to a 13-year-old kid in Ireland. I was itching to have that freedom. The freedom to choose where to go, talk to who I want to talk to and be who I want to be."