Nearly every time I tell someone how we live I get some version of the same question. “How do you afford that?” seems to flow freely from the mouths of strangers as if personal finance is acceptable first conversation content because we live a differently than they do. I don’t really mind it though. In fact, I find it quite flattering and I hope by sharing the answer I can inspire others to give life on the road a try.
So how do we do it? Well, the most important part of maintaining our lifestyle is actually budgeting and saving money rather than making money. However, budgeting is something I plan to get to in a later post. For today, we are going to talk about making income while traveling.
My family gets the majority of our income from writing. I write for a number of sites, and my husband has a couple of sweet writing gigs. I do also teach online dance lessons as a side hustle, and I’ve dabbled in social media marketing. That said, I don’t think that’s really the information you came here for, so let’s move on to the meaty stuff.
Okay, so obviously if you’re going to be traveling fulltime, you’re going to need some way to fund your travels while on the road. This little fact is what drives an enormous number of people away from roadschooling. However, it doesn’t need to be what keeps you from chasing your travel-schooling dreams. You see, there are actually an enormous number of options for creating streams of income while you travel. And no, they don’t all require a college degree.
Here are several of the most popular options out there:
Work Camping (Work + Camping)
Work camping is one of the most popular ways to make some spending money while out on the road. Some work camping positions will offer just a site and hook-ups, while others offer an hourly wage in addition to the site.
Work Camping jobs can be found at:
Amazon, Amazon FBA (Fulfillment by Amazon), and eBay
Purchasing items at a discount and reselling them online via Amazon or eBay has the potential to make a hardworking person some serious cash. This requires very little skill— just work ethic and the desire to be constantly on the lookout for a good deal.
Writing and selling eBooks, selling blog posts, and helping people put together resumés are all great ways to make money if you enjoy putting pen to paper. While doing these sorts of jobs, you can also work on building your own blog up to be an income stream of its own.
eBooks can be sold on:
Freelance writing jobs can be found on such sites as:
Additional blogging work can be found at:
The ultimate work camping job, Amazon CamperForce pays well, offers workers free sites and utilities, and is seasonal. This means you can work hard for a small part of the year and travel freely the rest of the time.
Learn more about Amazon CamperForce by clicking here.
Nurses will be happy to learn that there is an option for them to travel while still working. Travel nursing requires nurses to sign contracts that keep them in one place for several months before moving to the next place. Therefore, those interested in travel nursing must be okay with slow travel.
Manual Labor Contract Work
Similar to travel nursing, manual labor contract work requires workers to stay in one place for a few months at a time. One popular contract job of this type is pipeline-building. This work pays well and allows travel.
If you are skilled in an area that others may like to learn about, try offering lessons. This could mean using your current campground’s activity center to offer ballet lessons to little kids, or it could mean teaching flute lessons online.
Some great platforms for teaching online lessons include:
You can even make money as an online school tutor or as an English teacher for foreign students. Tutoring jobs can be found on sites such as:
Jobs teaching English as second language can be found using:
Freelance Your Skills
While writing does fall under this category, it also includes some other types of work. Graphic and web designers often have good luck working as freelancers. Photographers, videographers, and editors can also build a business in this way.
Freelance jobs can be found on the following sites:
Sewing or Crafting
If you are a crafty person, you might be interested in selling your creations online or at craft fairs and festivals in the places you visit. This works well for those who enjoy sewing, knitting, decoupage, jewelry-making, and a variety of other crafts.
Local craft fair and festivals can be found here.
Are you a professional photography already? Perhaps you’re just really good with a camera? Either way, you can make money with your photographs.
The first option is to find private clients via social media and a personal website and set up photo shoot appointments wherever you travel. This is a great way to make some dough, but may take some time to build up. Additionally, it’s likely that you’ll find youself staying in one place for a bit longer than you may like in order to fit all of your sessions into your stays.
Another photography option is to sell images online. Some of the best platforms for doing this are:
Child and Pet Care
If you plan on being stationary for any amount of time and you like children or pets, you might enjoy child- or pet-care work. Dog walkers are always appreciated in RV communities, and young couples would likely be grateful for a night out now and then.
By building up your reputation in the RV community and gathering some great references, you are more likely to get good business.
Amusement parks, restaurants, and retail establishments all hire seasonal employees at various times throughout the year (depending on their line of business). Take advantage of this by becoming familiar with the schedules of various industries and following the work.
For example, an amusement park may need new employees for the summer season only, while a toy store might be looking for new people to run registers during the busy holiday season.
While sales jobs aren’t for everyone, they do work well for some. When considering selling something, it is important to consider your various options and choose one that you would purchase yourself. After all, it is very hard to sell something you wouldn’t actually buy.
Some of the most popular products out there include:
Slowly but surely, more and more companies are hiring telecommuting employees. There are telecommuting jobs out there for a variety of skillsets. So whether you are an entry-level employee or an advanced graphic designer, you should be able to find a telecommuting job with a bit of searching.
Some of the most popular companies that are offer entry-level telecommuting jobs include:
Other telecommuting jobs can be found on sites like Indeed.
If you can type quickly and without many mistakes, you may find transcription work to be your ticket to travel freedom. Many transcription services will hire people with zero previous experience, and the pay generally pans out to be anywhere from $10 to $30 an hour. Not bad for a job you can do in your pajamas after the kids are in bed.
Some companies that hire beginner transcriptionists include:
Become a Consultant or Trainer
If you know all there is to know in one specific area, you can help others by becoming a consultant. Whether your passion is fitness, achieving your dreams, or organizing events, your expertise is valuable. Why not brand it and sell it?
Here are a few starting places for those who’d like to pursue coaching:
Whether you choose to invest in real estate or put your money into stocks, income made from investments is wonderful because it is passive, or at least nearly so. If you have enough money to take some risks, and have the time to learn the ropes of investing, this might be just the income stream for you and your family. Just be sure to choose your investments wisely and diversify your portfolio.
Driving Your Car
Both Uber and Lyft allow drivers to use their own vehicles to make some money. Drivers for these companies simply pick up passengers requiring transportation and take them from point A to point B, and get paid for each and every trip they make.
This is a great way to make some extra money on the weekends or in the evenings after the kids have gone to bed.
Meanwhile, Shipt gives drivers the opportunity to make money picking up and delivering groceries to local residencies. If you enjoy some time shopping with headphones in and don’t mind driving, Shipt may offer an amazing opportunity for you.
As a third option, UberEATS gives vehicle owners the opportunity to act as a food delivery person in your own vehicle. If you are available to work during lunch and dinner hours, this could be the job for you.
Here is where to go to find more info:
Other ways to make money include mystery shopping, taking surveys, and website testing. None of these is likely to be a full-time source of income, and each one would probably only provide supplemental income on its own.
However, every little bit counts, and having multiple streams of income is a great way to ensure financial stability throughout your travels.
Hopefully this list has inspired you to go out and find a way to bring in some money in a way that is both fulfilling and allows you the freedom to travel. Once you figure out how you are going to pay the bills, the only thing left to do is ditch your office job and hit the road!
Do you have a job or business you do on the road? Let us know what it is by commenting below.
*A portion of this post was originally written by Chelsea and posted on Let’s RV.