If you have been bitten by the travel bug you probably fantasize a life on the road, exploring exotic destinations, experiencing new cultures, and meeting people all over the world. But traveling to one’s heart’s content comes at a cost, especially if you plan to be on the road for an unlimited amount of time.
Teach English (or any language)
You have a valuable tool right at the tip of your tongue so why not take advantage of it and teach others to speak your language. There is a high demand for English teachers all over the world, but teachers of other languages are needed as well. Teaching in a foreign country will put you in direct contact with local children and adults and you will end up learning a lot. Most English language teaching positions do require an official teaching certificate as well as a bachelor’s degree. Teaching overseas will get you on the ground and running, but only outside school hours.
If you have online skills, offer your services remotely. You can make a living as a freelancer, balancing your work load with your travel plans. Online positions include blogger, writer, editor, graphic designer, programmer, social media, research, SEO, virtual assistant, and more. Two well-known websites where you can look for freelance gigs are Freelancer.com and Upwork. On Fiverr.com, you can find people who will pay you $5 to do just about anything, and then you can upsell your $5 service by doing more. Disadvantages of looking for this type of employment include waiting around for projects, competing with others for openings, deadlines, and low pay per assignment. You will need to have a good internet connection to make this happen. If you’re willing to devote part of your travel time to working on projects, this might be good for you.
Work on a cruise ship
There are plenty of job opportunities aboard cruise ships and if you land one of them, you will travel the sea in style. Employment possibilities include casino staff, housekeeping, waiters, bartenders, massage therapists, hair stylists, and more. The advantages of working on a cruise ship include the ability to travel while working, free room and board, and interaction with crew and guests.
If you don’t mind working outdoors and have basic manual skills, there is plenty of seasonal work available at farms around the world. Connect to organic farms all over the globe through the WWOOF volunteer organization. A similar service is provided by HelpX, which is an online listing of farms, hostels and even sailing boats inviting volunteers to help them in exchange for food and accommodation. A third possibility is Workaway, which helps budget travellers connect with families and/or organizations looking for help with a range of varied activities. One of Workaway’s aims is “to enable travellers to find paid positions to help them to continue to fund their travels.”
Bartender or waiter
Just show up at a busy bar or restaurant during tourist season and you’ll have a pretty good chance of landing a job. The work could be seasonal and the pay minimal, but the advantages are free food and tips. Many places are in desperate need of helpers. To do the job legally you’ll need a work permit or a working holiday visa.
It might not be for everyone, but if you’re good with children you could consider providing families with childcare and light household duties. This will give you a taste of working in a foreign country and you’ll be compensated with free room and board and pocket money. You need to be careful when choosing an agency for placement and hopefully you’ll fit in with the family that employs you.
Work in a hostel
If you plan to stay put for a short period of time you can consider working in a hostel. Hostels may offer employment opportunities such as cleaning, housekeeping, manning the front desk, and kitchen duties. In exchange you’ll have free accommodations. Finish your daily work assignment and you have the rest of the day to see the sights.
Local tour guide
Share your knowledge of local sites by escorting visitors and tourists. You can do this independently or as part of a company, although the latter may require training and a long term commitment. To do the job properly you need to be readily available and preferably speak the local language of the places you visit. The work could be seasonal but the major advantage is that you’ll meet people from all over the world.
Many travellers write about their adventures and some of them have been very successful in their efforts to monetize a travel blog. This can be done by including ads and affiliate links on the blog, as well as by accepting sponsored articles. The advantage of maintaining a travel blog is that you can do it anywhere in the world. The main disadvantage is that you need a lot of website traffic to generate a revenue stream. Add to that a need for a good internet connection as well as a talent of writing many interesting and readable articles on the go. Building up a following for a travel blog takes a lot of time so it’s best to start even before you leave home.
If you have the travel bug, set forth on your journey! Hopefully these tips will help you afford the trip of a lifetime!