If you are like us and your dream is to travel the world, one thing often stops that idealistic aspiration before even getting started – Money! But if the pandemic has shown us anything, it is that it is possible to earn an income whilst away from the office. So with that in mind, let’s look at some realistic options that might allow you to afford to travel, extend your holiday length and even consider opting into the new digital nomad lifestyle. Here are the best jobs to earn money while traveling now.
Rent out your house
If you plan to be gone for the long haul, it probably makes the most sense to give up your lease or sell your property, rather than risk ongoing bills. But if you are off to trek through misty mountains or tour the glorious beaches of Phuket, whilst planning to be back in just a few months, it might be worth considering renting out your home during your absence.
Any property can be of interest to a potential short-term tenant, and you could look for a local company to manage short-term lets, arrange it yourself, or turn to Airbnb. Most properties can earn hundreds of dollars a month, but if your property is particularly upmarket you could earn thousands of dollars per month whilst you are away.
To be the most cost-efficient and keep expenses low, find a friend or family member who can keep the place clean and secure between guests and resolve any problems in your absence.
Lease out your car or parking space
It is also possible to rent out your unused car whilst you are away. Sites like Turo allow you to rent out your car in a similar manner to Airbnb does for homes. Turo covers the issues of insurance to ensure that should the worst happen, you won’t be out of pocket upon your return.
If you’ve taken your car with you on your epic grand tour, then your parking space may be sitting empty for several months. Such prime real-estate can be leveraged for a tidy little sum via the site Neighbor in the US or JustPark in the UK.
Start a travel blog
Writing whilst traveling can be hard and easy to forget to keep up to date with. For that reason, despite the number of travelers already out there, there are plenty of scopes for you to document your own adventures and share them via your own blog. Fill it with interesting writing, stunning accompanying images, and details of what you have experienced to provide authentic reading material for interested viewers.
Once your blog is gaining momentum and you see your visitor numbers soaring, either add advertising such as Google’s Adsense or look for related sponsors who might be interested in helping to fund you to travel in exchange for you talking about them or giving them advertising space on your site or videos.
The best part about starting a travel blog is that you can use monetize the material now, and use the same material later on to create travel guides and other travel-related material. Here’s how to start a profitable site right now.
If you plan to put down short-term roots in one location, teaching English a few days a week can be a great way to supplement your income and still indulge in local culture.
Assuming that you have formal teacher training and are a native English speaker, you can find short or long-term work directly with local schools, or via websites dedicated to finding such staff. In any case, teaching jobs aren’t difficult to come by even if English is not your mother tongue.
On the other hand, if you are looking for a more casual offering, tutoring is ideal and can be carried out in person or via an online platform.
Research for a travel guidebook
If you are going to be traveling exhaustively, keep a log of everywhere you go and what you do. This travelogue can become the source material for writing a travel guide, either on your own or as part of a regular publication.
Write up your experiences into guides on what to do, what to see and what to know about any location you visit, to publish your travel guides once your travels have come to their natural conclusion. After all, not everyone is into the most famous ones!
Become an Instagram influencer
If writing isn’t in your soul, you can attempt to become an Instagram influencer. It’s a daunting task and one that has not got a very good rep lately, but still worth a try if that rocks your boat.
Instagram users reward positive posts through interaction. Post images from all of the locations you visit with snappy, happy captions, along with the food you eat (or decline!), and short aspirational messages about how you are feeling and what you have been doing will go a long way to growing your followers.
With a big enough fan base, you can begin to reach out to potential sponsors and ask to collaborate with them. If your fan numbers are high enough and you match with their companies image, they may offer to fund part of your trip or in some other way reward you.
Turn into a stock photographer
There are a number of websites dedicated to selling your photographs online. Simply snap everything as expertly as you can and upload them to your chosen platform. Add more every day and wait for your images to begin to be noticed. The stock site takes a cut of the fee and passes the remainder along to you.
Whilst the sale of a few images will not get you far, they remain on the website to be sold again and again, so as you add more to your library or images it eventually becomes a simple numbers game that will allow you to indulge in your travel lifestyle for a little longer.
Get a part-time or short-term job
If you need an instant hit of money whilst traveling, you can pick up a part-time or short-term job. Usually, these are manual tasks, such as picking fruit or pulling weeds on a farm, but some are more holiday-centric, like bar staff on holiday islands. Just be sure to comply with all rules on working abroad, as you may need a visa or work permit.
You will most likely need to provide a copy of your passport to any potential employer, and you may have to apply for the right to work whilst traveling within each country, so do this in advance where possible – Working Holiday Visas are worth checking out if you are under 35 years old – so you can plan your journey and work to fit together perfectly.
Not one for the faint of heart, but if you’ve got talent singing or playing an instrument, you can consider busking in popular local locations. You can make some serious money busking, and most likely you will meet interesting locals and fellow tourists but be sure to check that you do not violate any local rules, as you don’t want to land fines when you were meant to be earning money.
Artists can get in on the act too, as any trip to a tourist hot spot will show you. Sand sculpting, caricatures, spray painting, and a whole host of other ideas spring to mind. Harness a talent of yours and stretch out your holiday with some hard-earned spending money.
Work in a hostel
Chances are, if you are touring around from country to country, you may well be staying at hostels along the way. Check whether they have any work available for a short period of your stay. They might ask you to assist in a variety of ways, from organizing trips out to helping around the site.
Working in a hostel is great, as it is another route to meeting new and interesting people from a variety of cultures who all have a similar interest, discovering new cultures.
Work on a cruise ship
Albeit not the most sustainable way of traveling, the harsh reality is that cruise ships travel all over the world. And of course, they need crew.
One of the most obvious reasons that people want to work onboard ships is because of the travel.
Onboard there are options to work as photographers, singers, and performers, or assist in the day-to-day care and comfort of the passengers. Although much of your time will be taken up by duties onboard, there will always be layovers where you will get the chance to briefly explore a range of countries that you might otherwise not get to, and meet interesting locals.
So, there you have it. Whether you want to continue working remotely whilst you travel or find a job to do as you visit your chosen countries, it is possible to fund your trips whilst actively on holiday or even profit from your travels.
Whatever you choose to do, take care and safe travels!
Catalin Geangos is a travel blogger who mainly focuses on nightlife, pub crawls, and party experiences while traveling in Southeast Asia. He moved from Romania to the UK 6 years ago and since then he has traveled to over 30 countries.