As someone who travels for the majority of the year, the biggest question I get asked is, “How do you afford to travel all the time?” People think I’m constantly on a permanent vacation, but the secret lies in the work I do when I’m not posting about my travels on social media. It isn’t the easiest at times, but I’ve definitely figured out how to travel full-time and still make money when I’m on the road.
I freelance write and edit as my full-time job while I’m traveling, which has proven to be both challenging and rewarding in so many ways. I love the flexibility my job offers, I’m able to do something I’m passionate about, and I have the opportunity to share my experiences with the rest of the world. Through my travels, I’ve met other people who run social media for brands, do graphic design, teach music lessons via Skype, and more, all from their hotels, Airbnbs, and hostels across the globe.
So, if you’ve been thinking about trying out the digital nomad lifestyle, but aren’t sure where to begin, here are a few job options that can help you continue to earn money when you’re on the road. As someone who has lived and breathed this lifestyle for the past two and a half years, I can safely say that taking a chance on it is 100% worth it.
If you have a way with words, there are definitely a ton of career options for you to work remotely while you’re traveling. (I feel like I’m a great example of that, as cocky as that may sound.) Though the freelance writing hustle can sometimes be challenging, there’s a lot of reward in it.
You can contribute to blogs and digital publications, or take up copywriting. If you want to make some money writing, but don’t necessarily want to come up with the content yourself, you can transcribe audio and video through services like Rev.
If your talents are visually-oriented, there are a ton of options for you to explore. Companies like Flytographer offer opportunities for people to book photographers for shoots when they’re traveling, so if you’re a skilled photographer, this just might be a wonderful way to pursue your passion while making money.
Additionally, you can create and sell your own photo editing presets or offer editing services for beginner photographers. Freelance graphic design is another option for you to pick up projects on a case-by-case basis.
With brands and small business venturing into the world of Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter marketing, social media jobs are a dime a dozen. Sometimes, they allow you to work remotely. If you consider yourself to be a social media guru and want to offer your expertise to small businesses, shoot them an email and see if you can pick up some work while you’re abroad.
If you don’t mind sitting at your computer for a few hours every once in a while, you can pick up a data entry job that allows you to work while you’re on the road. When I first moved to New York, I worked for a music publishing company that had me enter data into their various spreadsheets. The work required a meticulous attention to detail, but it was relatively easy and helped me make a few extra bucks when I was trying to get settled.
Though you probably can’t be a full-fledged personal assistant when you’re abroad — it would be pretty hard for you to run errands for your boss — some assistant positions only require you to do minimal tasks. You could do things like set up the person’s schedule, book their travel and meetings, and check their emails — all of which are possible to do when you’re in a totally different time zone.
Having gone to music school, I know a ton of my classmates who have made Skype music lessons a great side hustle for themselves — especially when they’re on tour. If you’re musically talented and can share your skills with the next generation of up and coming musicians, you can offer virtual lessons on your instrument via Skype or FaceTime.