If you’ve got a full-time job, then you know that traveling for more than a week or two at a time is basically impossible. However, there are plenty of gigs, side hustles, and even full-time jobs available for people who want to spend more time on the road (or in the air, or on a boat…).
It’s a good idea to try out one or more of these ideas before you pack your bags. Make sure that you can reliably earn enough to cover your expenses, plus a cushion of savings in case something unexpected happens.
Self-Publishing, Copywriting, and Editing
Gone are the days of writers having to rely solely on publishing houses to get their work out into the world. These days, a good writer can easily self-publish their work, and they can do it while traveling anywhere in the world.
Copywriting is another great way to make some money while traveling the world. You can write website copy for a company or on a freelance basis.
This job requires little more than a good internet connection and a good ear. You’ll listen to audio and transcribe it into a text document. There are lots of different types of transcription, including some — such as medical transcribing — that require specialized training. Find out your options by talking to other people who do this kind of work.
Virtual Assistant or Data Entry
This is something that is becoming increasingly common in the digital age. Oftentimes, small companies or individuals will require the services of a virtual assistant. This can be done from nearly anywhere. If you’re on the other side of the world from your company’s home base, you could offer overnight services (from their point of view) or cover inquiries that come in outside business hours.
If Google Sheets and Excel don’t give you a headache, then data entry might be a good idea for a job while you’re traveling. It might be a bit tedious, but work is work. In fact, these kinds of rote tasks are ideal when your attention is halfway focused on the beautiful surroundings of your temporary home away from home.
If you are fluent in a second language, then translation is a great option to earn some income while traveling. There’s a lot of translation work out there if you are bilingual in the right languages. Spanish is obviously very popular, but being able to speak any additional languages could be a huge boost. Just a word of warning: Don’t try to fake this one until you make it.
If you want to use your language skills but aren’t exactly fluent in anything but English, consider teaching English as a second language (ESL) instead. Companies and schools are always on the lookout for new ESL teachers.
Social Media Manager or SEO Expert
Many companies, both big and small, have a social media presence these days. This means they need someone to manage all their posts, respond to customers, and expand their reach. If you’re a media-savvy traveler who knows how to craft a Facebook post or frame the perfect Instagram shot, then your skills are in high demand.
Businesses typically like their customers to know about them. That’s where SEO comes in. By optimizing a company’s website, an SEO expert will help the company appear higher up in search results. And this can be done from almost anywhere while traveling. You’ll need to do some research — or, better yet, take a class — before you jump into this field.
Graphic Design and Video Editing
Graphic design is another type of work that can be done anywhere you can carry a laptop. If you have the talent and skills, you can work as a graphic designer while you travel. If you’re already employed full-time as a graphic designer, talk to your company about the possibility of a remote work model that will suit both of your needs.
Video editing is a job that typically requires a lot of computer power. However, there are ways around that–namely, what’s called offline editing. By temporarily reducing the size of the files you are working with, you can edit on a much smaller laptop, which can be taken anywhere.
There’s a major need for healthcare providers all over the world. Depending on where you are traveling to, working as a temporary or traveling nurse may be an option. Obviously, this requires you to be an actual nurse with the proper credentials. If you’re passionate about helping people — and going beyond the tourist spots to interact with the locals — then this could be a great way to subsidize your travel. Just keep in mind that traveling nurses are in higher demand in less developed nations.
If you have the skills for web development, then all you need is a good laptop and an internet connection. We’re not saying that it’s all going to be hacking at the beach, but you’ll have the flexibility to work where you want, when you want. If you’re freelancing, you can also pick and choose your projects — and take off for a few days to go explore a new locale without needing to get approval from anyone.
No matter where you travel, you’ll find that the world runs on apps. That means app developers are in high demand. The best thing about that is you can do this work anywhere while you travel around the world.
Travel Blogger or Photographer
If you love traveling, then you can make money by sharing your passion with other people. By running a successful blog while you travel, you can earn cash via affiliate links and ads.
Similar to blogging, travel photography appeals to people who also have wanderlust. If you know your way around a camera and can do some image editing, then you can do this while traveling.
While you might not be able to get sponsors until you’ve reached an impressive number of followers, you can add affiliate links to your posts now. Affiliate marketing involves promoting another company’s products or services. Typically, you’ll receive a small percentage of their sales. You can do this while blogging, posting on Instagram, uploading videos to YouTube or Tiktok… As long as you disclose the fact that you’re using affiliate links, you can monetize those travel posts you were doing for free!
Bars and restaurants are almost always hiring. This makes it a great option for travelers who want some simple work with few strings attached. Make sure that you brush up on local labor laws, though. If you’re traveling abroad, you may need a special visa or need to limit your employment to a certain timeframe.
Well, this might sound like the most boring job, but it might let you see and experience the world while crunching some numbers. Sounds great to us! Even the most routine work can take on a whole new meaning when you’re able to do it while traveling.
Freelancing, remote work, and the gig economy have changed the way that we do business. You’ll find that more and more businesses are willing to be flexible in order to retain great talent. So what are you waiting for? Get out there and see the world–and get paid while you do it.