In the Beginning…
We held the very first FIWE in Budapest in July 2016. It was open to bloggers only – they were our guinea pigs and together we brainstormed ideas on what a bigger conference could look like in years to come.
Back in 2016 there wasn’t much of an FI community in Europe. There was a handful of bloggers, but there were very few real life meetups. We read about meetups in the US and decided to build a similar type of FI community here in Europe.
We started small and decided to test the idea out on a few bloggers we were already in contact with. The idea was to meet up in real life and brainstorm about what a larger FIWE event could look like from 2017 onwards. And also to eat ourselves through Budapest and generally have a great time with no fixed agenda.
Here’s the post that started it all.
- Brandon (Mad Fientist) from the US, currently living in Edinburgh, Scotland
- Oliver (Frugalisten), who’s gone on to become one of the biggest FI bloggers in Germany
- Martin (Minimalist.cz), a minimalism blogger from the Czech Republic
- Jenny (Ex-Studentin) from near Stuttgart, Germany
- Monika and Gisela, two of the writers behind Klunkerchen and authors of the books Finanziell Frei (financially free) and Finanzielle Freiheit (Financial Freedom) respectively, both living in Berlin, Germany
- Amber Tree Leaves from Belgium
- Natascha (Madame Moneypenny) living in Berlin, Germany
- Last but not least – us!
Accommodation: We picked a spot in central Budapest and all participants made their own accommodation arrangements in the area (Airbnbs and youth hostels). During the day we hung out in local parks and cafés and walked through the city.
Costs: FIWE is totally non-commercial. We organised it for fun and we didn’t want to make any money out of it. Everybody paid for their own accommodation, food, drinks etc.