Travel and Work: How to Make Money on the Road

Travel and Work: How to Make Money on the Road

by George Mouratidis
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A work arrangement which would allow for ultimate travel freedom is a pipeline dream for many. However, contrary to what you might instinctively think, travelling the world and earning money at the same time is not that hard. Nowadays, flights are cheaper than ever and the opportunities to work internationally or remotely abound. In this article, we will share with you the best ways you earn a living while you travel.

Put your property to work

If you have property back at your home country, you can rent it out through platform such as Airbnb, HomeAway or Booking. Since you’ll be away most of the time, you can entrust the management of your rental to AirSorted, a startup specializing in the promotion and cleaning of your rental property. They will do everything from checking in guests to tending to their every need while you are away, for a small percentage of the profit. An excellent way to fund your travels without sweating too much.

Start an online business

Starting an online business is not easy, but can be incredibly rewarding in the long run. Nowadays you can even start online shops without holding any physical inventory (dropshipping) and simply turn in a profit by remarketing. You can even provide services to customers from all over the world or even distribute software you have created. The possibilities are endless, but there is no quick way to make a business profitable: you have to put in the work, but the results may surprise you.

Here are some resources to help you with starting an online business:

Turn your day job into a remote position and become a digital nomad

Most office jobs of the 21st century can be conducted remotely if the worker has access to a laptop and internet. Also, communication via company chats and project management software can actually be more efficient than drawn-out meetings. Remote working has many benefits to employers and employees, both in terms of productivity and work-life balance.

Although the stereotypical image of a digital nomad includes white people working from their laptops in some heavenly beach in Thailand, the reality is much different. Adequate infrastructure and reliable WiFi are the cornerstones of the digital nomad lifestyle. That’s why finding a good coworking space is paramount to a successful spell as a digital nomad.

Read this guide about how you can negotiate a remote working position with your employer so you can travel the world without sacrificing your career. There are people who have been doing this for years and have no intention of stopping!

Become a pet sitter

Although you won’t exactly get paid for it, pet sitting is an excellent opportunity to travel around the world with free accommodation. Plus, you get to know new animals in the process! Although letting a stranger stay at your house with your favourite pet may sound estranging, there are many benefits in both parties involved. Hosts can rest easy knowing their beloved pet is happy at home (and not a kennel), while travellers can stay at a foreign country for free. If you are a responsible individual with a soft spot for our furry friends, it’s worth exploring the idea.

Here are some websites to get you started:

Become an au pair

Becoming an au pair is a great way to experience life as a local and get paid for it. Basically you will work as a live-in nanny for the children, run some light errands and live in an amazing house (probably). Of course, you will be living with the host family, but you will have plenty of time to explore the area around you. At the bare minimum, this job will provide you with free room and food, while some families do give a small weekly allowance. If the idea of caring for the spawn of a stranger doesn’t scare you, you might be the right person for the job.

Here are some links to platforms you can use to find au pair jobs:

Deliver items while you travel

While this is not a stable way to earn money consistently, it can be useful for covering some of your travel expenses. Apps like Grabr allow you to deliver overseas items to people at your destination and earn a fee for your service. The way it works is simple: a buyer makes a request for an item that is cheaper in your country and then you offer to deliver it for a fee when you arrive. The buyer gets the item for a better price and you earn some money along the way. You can take multiple orders at once but be careful as custom officials might get suspicious if you try to carry 5 brand new iPhones inside the country.

Teach English abroad

This is one of the most common ways for native English speakers to travel the world and get paid. If you’re willing to settle for a little while, that is. There is big demand in English teachers in Asian countries, and the barrier to entry is very low (compared to what you can make). A TEFL course is what will help you get your foot in the door, as this is the basic certification that all serious employers seek. If you want even more flexibility, you can teach kids online. Although it is harder to find a job that way, you can earn a respectable amount if you establish yourself.

Here is a list of resources for prospective English teachers:

Sell your art

If travel jobs aren’t your thing and being a digital nomad doesn’t quite cut it for you, why not hit the roads selling your art? That can be anything from handmade jewelry to paintings. Although the profit margin is limited, selling your art on the street can be a great way to earn some extra pocket money during your summer holiday. If your raw materials are not very heavy, you can even carry them with you as you travel. Besides, you can always sell your art online to diversify your assets. Etsy, Instagram, Ebay, Saatchi and Society6 are just some of the online marketplaces you can try.

Sell stock photos

Stock photography is a tough market to break into, but once you do, you can earn a decent income. Sadly, taking great photos entails much more than picking up a mid-range DSLR camera and shooting photos willy-nilly. You need to be persistent and ready to spend hundreds of hours learning more about your art every day. Same goes even you are already a professional.

In case you are completely unfamiliar with the term, stock photos are pre-made generic photos that can be purchased and used for a wide-range of purposes (web design, advertisements, magazines, e-shops, etc). You can sell the image licenses yourself or through an agency and prices can range from a few pounds to a few thousand pounds.

As you can imagine, being a great stock photographer can be an exciting career, but it takes a lot of experience and practice before you get the feel of the market.

Here is a list of websites you can use to sell your stock photos:

Stay at places for free

Join the Peace Corps

Joining the Peace Corps is a quite radical decision that involves a lot of commitment and doesn’t exactly let you live anywhere you want. Instead, you will be deployed in a developing country for many months and will not have a lot of chance for mobility. However, it is an excellent opportunity to make a positive impact on the world around you while the rest of us whine about it on social media.

Assignments vary based on the needs of each location. You could be teaching English to kids, work at disease prevention or help in schools and education. During this time, you won’t have to care about spending any money, since the organization will pay for all travel and living expenses. Furthermore, they provide a readjustment stipend upon completion of your services. Find out more about the Peace Corps here.

WWOOFing

If you have a green thumb and don’t mind doing hard manual labor in exchange for some food and lodgings in an exciting new place, look no further than WWOOF.

The acronym stands for World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms and it works in a fairly simple way. The volunteer (aka WWOOFer) gets the opportunity to spend time in an active organic farm and work alongside the owners, learning more about sustainable agriculture along the way. You will be required to do unpaid manual work every day (up to the owner to decide what and for how long), but at least you don’t have to pay for lodging and food. And when we say daily manual work, we’re not talking about a couple of hours after which you can enjoy nature. You are expected to work at least six hours every day, and often in remote locations without basic amenities.

The website of the organisation claims that this is a great way to build trust and a sustainable global community. We on the other hand, think that the premise is dangerously similar to slave labour. If you are super curious about it and don’t mind working for free for someone else’s gain, see what’s on offer here. But seriously, there are better ways to see the world and not spend money.

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