Recently we have received a lot of emails from people wondering how to get paid to travel the world.
Since we’ve been spending our time answering these emails and how to be a travel blogger, we thought it would be better for us to write a post about it. Last week we featured an article about how a couple saved $30,000 by moving to South Korea. It went over really well but people had several questions about how to get a job, how do you make money, and save money abroad. It made us realize that we should write an in depth post about how to get paid to travel world. We earn a high six figure income by running a travel blog, but we’ve also learned a lot from our friends and colleagues about about other ways they make money. So, we’ve rounded up the first hand experiences from people we know or have met during our seven years of full time travel that get paid to travel the world.
Ultimate Guide to Get Paid to Travel the World.
Get Paid to Travel
If our inbox is any indication, many people are looking for ways to get paid to travel the world, and we thought that we’d share a few resources and tips with you on how to make your dream a reality.
First of all, let me warn you that the first couple of years of your travel career are going to be difficult. You won’t magically make a ton of money. I’ve had people email me asking how we make money travel blogging when they still have a blogspot account. You need to have an established travel blog and some authority on the Internet before you can make money as a travel blogger. But that is an entirely different post and luckily we’ve written about it several times on ThePlanetD. However, you don’t only need to be a travel bloggers to make money traveling, there are several ways to get paid to travel and we are going to outline a few of them here. But first, let’s start with travel blogging, because it’s what we know best.
Get Paid to Travel Resource
Superstar Blogging. Nomadic Matt changed his make money travel blogging book into the Superstar blogging course Superstar Blogging Course. He has split up his course into 4 different streams: The business of travel blogging, How to become a travel photographer, How to Become a Video Expert and How to Be a Travel Writer and has brought on different experts in their field to run and lead the courses. These are intense in depth tracks that will help you succeed and he offers monthly mentoring and support through his teachers.
- Business of Travel Blogging: $300 (6 monthly payments of $50) and he also has a 30 Day money back guarantee.
- How to become a Travel Photography: $199 (5 payments of $39.99)
- How to be a Travel Writer: $485 (5 Monthly Payments of 97.00)
- How to Become a Videographer $349 one time fee
Cut Your Expenses in Half
While you are building your brand and your blog, you will either need to keep your current job for a while, or if you have a bit of savings, you may want to start traveling. We worked for a year on our blog before taking off for good and once we did, we had about $20,000 in the bank. We had to live frugally for a while so we travelled to Asia where our dollar could stretch the farthest. Central and South America are other great options for saving money while traveling. We feel that it is important for a travel blogger to have experience traveling, so the sooner you can manage to get on the road and share your stories, photos and videos, the better.
We saved our money by cutting our expenses to almost nothing. We didn’t have car payments, we sold our house, and had zero debt. Therefore while we worked full time for an entire year (while building our travel blog at night) we could put away a lot of money for travel.
If you are feeling overwhelmed by money, read a few of our articles and guests post on budget travel below.
- How to travel World when you don’t have the funds – Think you don’t have the means to travel? Be inspired by Thailand blogger, Petz who shows that even with limited budget, you can travel the world.
- How to find Free Accommodation Around the World – There are ways to stay for free while you travel. If you are making very little money, this is a great option for saving.
Plus you can buy Dalene and Pete Heck’s ebook How to Become a House-Sitter and See the World. It gives all the secrets behind their house-sitting success. They’ve had 14 jobs in 9 countries, and saved over $50,000 in the cost of accommodations as a result.
Live abroad on a Budget
Become Location Independent
Tim Leffell is a travel expert that has lived in three different countries and travelled the world. He has taken his years of expertise and written a guide called A Better Life for Half the Price, “How to prosper on less money in the cheapest places to live.” He offers three different packages.
1. the curious.
2. the committed.
3. All in.
He’s been getting paid to travel longer than most people in the business and is an excellent resource.
Other Ways to Get Paid to Travel
There are Instagram and YouTube Stars and stars that get paid to travel. These people don’t even have a blog. They have built their social media channels around their personalities and have a strong following and fan base. If you want to put work into either of these social media sites, you too can get paid to travel. Instagram especially is a growing medium where if you put a year or so of elbow grease into building your following while posting excellent photographs, you’ll be able to start charging money for Instagram. Companies may pay you to post photographs, or they may invite you to their destination to show it off to your fans. Even we get paid for Instagram, follow our channel here!
Read about the Dos and Don’ts of Instagram at Young Adventuress
Work on a Cruise Ship
When I first caught the travel bug, I worked as a singer on a cruise ship in Guam. I then sang in other places like Japan and the US. Now not everyone can sing for a living, but you can work on a cruise line in many capacities. Cruise ships are always looking for people to hire, you just have to have a yearning for travel and a will to work hard.
Believe me, you’ll have to work long hard hours on a cruise but it is an excellent way to save money as you’ll have little expenses and the perfect way to see the world while getting paid to travel.
You can work as wait staff, blackjack dealers (I’ve done that job and it’s fun!), cleaning staff, cruise staff, entertainment, bartenders, activities managers…the possibilities are endless.
To search for a cruise ship job, check out All Cruise Jobs.com
Become a guide
We have many friends that we’ve met on our travels that are travel guides. They travel the world more than we do leading tours from Cuba to Myanmar. Good travel guides are in high demand and you can make a great living. If you are personable, patient and knowledgeable this is your way to get paid to travel.
Places like Austin Adventures Adventure Travel and Intrepid Travel, and GoAhead Tours are good places to start looking, but there are many companies out there that are seeking English speaking guides with a good knowledge of a destination.
You don’t have to be a guide either, we know people who work in the sales and marketing departments and they get a lot of travel perks. If you don’t want to become a tour guide, you could always work in their offices and use your corporate skills. The benefits of working with a travel company is that you will have a lot of opportunities to travel while getting paid!
It’s a tough gig these days as magazines and newspapers regularly fold, but freelance writing is still an option. I know many journalists that subsidize their travels by writing for magazines, newspapers and online resources. We even write for many places like Yahoo Travel and BBC Travel ourselves.
Start by writing guest posts for people like us (see our writing guidelines) and Matador Network. As you build your travel writing portfolio, you’ll be able to approach the big guys with a story. Think unique and catchy and before you know it, you’ll be a published writer.
Sell Stuff – Multilevel Marketing
I didn’t have the faintest clue about this way of making money until I went to the TBEX (Travel Blog Exchange) Conference in Europe and keynote speaker Katja Presnal talked about how she made a lot of money selling things online. She didn’t have a travel blog and started an online store! She was so successful, she was featured by Oprah!
Now she is doing multilevel marketing selling essential oils and making a killing. If you have a knack for sales and marketing, this could be for you. Perhaps you could start your own online store. We put one together quick and easy one with Amazon above.
Become a Flight Attendant
There are new routes and airlines opening up all the time, so there has to be jobs out there.
These people work hard, but they get a lot of travel perks and layovers in exotic destinations. Someone like HeatherPoole has turned her flight attendant career into a celebrity status as she tweets about her travels and has even written a book about the life of a flight attendant. If you want to get paid to travel, this is a great place to start.
Buy her book: Cruising Attitude on Amazon
Become an Instructor or Guide with Skills
We’ve met whitewater kayaking, rafting and climbing guides around the world that travel from place to place teaching wannabe adventurers their skills. If you have a special skill like scuba diving, kayaking, or rock climbing, you can go anywhere on earth to instruct tourists and get paid to travel. From Australia, to China, Central America to Africa, we’ve instructional guides from foreign lands teaching in a different country. It was our first choice when we started traveling, our original plan was to become scuba instructors and teach around the world. If that didn’t work out, we were going to lead our own bicycle tours.
Become a Social Media Guru
If you have skills in social media, you could work for a company from anywhere. We have many friends that run corporate social media accounts and get paid well to do so. The best part about social media is that you can live remotely. You don’t have to be tied down to an office. We even pay people to help us out with social media. We are constantly on the road and they are located anywhere from Prague to Paris. It’s a job you can do from any continent at any time of day.
Massage Therapist, Esthetician
We get a massage everywhere we go. From cruise ships to resorts to everywhere in between. If you have skills to relieve aches and pains or to help people look and feel better, this is an amazing job for travel. And people tend to spend money on these types of services more when they are travelling than while at home. I know that we like to splurge on a good haircut, a facial or a pedicure when travelling. Think about getting into this business and you could find yourself working at Four Seasons around the world or on cruise liners.
Video is taking over the Internet and if you have skills at video editing, you can offer your services to anyone. People are paying for video content regularly, so why not have them come to you! Geoff and Katy of Wandertooth are editing and optimizing YouTube Channels and spend their time living in Prague while traveling around Europe regularly. We spent a week with them in Spain while they captured our travels on video and edited a couple of beautiful stories. Check them out on our YouTube Channel
Yoga Instructors are in high demand as people search for enlightenment and better health. There are even yoga instructor retreats around the world where you can travel while investing in your future. I know of many people who open up their own yoga companies and then book tours where they take a minimum amount of people on a yoga retreat. All you have to do is find a location and a spot where you can lead your course and then you can work on the details of accommodation and meals in the destination. It can be done, you just have to think outside the box.
Read: The Best Yoga Retreats Around the World
Need inspiration? Read: The Yoga Retreat the Made me Quit my Day Job
In today’s world, the possibilities of getting paid to travel are endless. If you are in the medical profession, you are in demand. I have a friend that takes blood for a living and she is qualified to work in many clinics overseas. I’ve seen backpackers working in guesthouses and hostels and travellers tending bar. If you want something bad enough, you can make it happen. Once upon a time only National Geographic Photographers and Travel and Leisure writers were the only people that could get paid to travel the world. Now you can take the business into your own hands and make money many ways. The question is, what’s the right way for you?
Do you know of another way to get paid to travel the world? We’d love you to share your ideas in the comments.
Disclaimer: We do receive affiliate commission from the books and courses mentioned, but like everything here on ThePlanetD, we wouldn’t recommend them if they weren’t great. We get affiliate offers all the time that we never accept and these people that we mention are at the top of their game.