a woman on earning money while traveling

How to Earn Money While Traveling – Top 20 Ways

Who says you can’t earn money while traveling and exploring the country (or even the world)? With internet connections available almost everywhere and a plethora of devices that you can bring with you anywhere, becoming a digital nomad is not a dream anymore, but a possibility. 

You just need to learn about what opportunities you can tackle, pick-and-choose based on your skills, and traveling situation (if you’re open to staying in one location at a time, or not). 

20 Ways to Earn Money While Traveling

1. Get Paid to Teach

Probably the easiest thing you can do is to teach another person something you know, including: 

  • English: Teaching people how to speak English is one of the most popular online jobs. You can do this during your downtime as long as you have your own computer, a stable connection, noise-cancelling headphones and some experience teaching English. (You’ll need more experience if you’re going to teach kids). Rates run between $10 and $40 per hour, depending on which website you’re hired for.
  • Sign language: This teaching gig can be completely done online. 
  • Specific subjects (as a tutor): Become a tutor to students from around the world and pay for your travels. You do have to know your stuff – your students would rely on your knowledge to understand subjects they’re falling behind. 
  • Swimming, surfing and scuba diving: You need to be on-site to teach people these water-based activities. You’ll earn an average of $15 to $20/hour. 
  • Sports: Like swimming, teaching sports is better face-to-face. Go to community centers and clubhouses where you’re traveling to and check for seasonal teaching jobs in tennis, basketball or other sports you know.
  • Yoga: You don’t need a certificate to teach people how to do yoga, but you’ll have an edge over your competition if you do. This can be done both online and offline.
  • Singing and Dancing: Share your singing chops or dancing/choreography skills and earn money as you go. You can earn about $75/hour teaching people how to sing, and between $50 and $140 per hour for teaching people how to dance. 
  • Musical instruments: Are you great with guitars? Ukulele? Piano? Drums? You can teach people of all ages both online and face-to-face. 

Mastered pottery? Calligraphy? Jewelry-making? Knitting? You can get paid to teach any of these things as long as you have knowledge and experience to share, and you bring value to your students. 

2. Become an influencer

The dream of many kids these days is to become an influencer. Who wouldn’t? Endorsing a product on one picture here, wearing sponsored clothes there. It seems like such an “easy job.” 

But the reality is that only a few influencers actually make stable money. And it took a lot of work for them to get there. However, if you accept these truths and you’re ready to work hard to become an influencer, here’s how you can earn money this way: 

  • Monetize your social media
  • Partner with influencers and brands: 
  • Develop and push content on every platform possible (your own website, YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, etc.)
  • Continuously find opportunities for partnerships

Do you know the common thing about successful influencers? Aside from doing these 4 things above, they are also consistent in bringing out content and they give value to their audience. 

3. Write for Cash

If you have a passion for writing, you can have a steady amount of income writing for other people’s websites, press releases, books, and other types of content.

Your writing doesn’t necessarily have to be about your travels. 

Some people write product reviews to support websites selling Amazon items. 

Other people write social media captions, which are dropped to be posted on a daily basis as a way to build a brand’s online presence. 

Beginner writers can earn somewhere between 1 to 3 cents a word, but senior writers could make up to 10 cents a word. 

There are also some people who write for their own websites, then monetize these websites through Google ads, affiliates, direct selling and other methods. 

Read more: 14 Frugal Living Tips You Can Implement Today and Save Thousands

4. Apply to a Cruise Ship 

If your goal is to travel the world with free accommodation and free fare, you can try applying to cruise ships or yachts. 

The positions vary wildly, from housekeeping to kitchen crew, bartending and waitressing, to entertaining (singing, dancing, hosting). Of course, there are also those who are responsible for keeping the ship safe and on schedule. 

The hours are long in cruise ships and contracts last months or years, but you have downtime every time the ship docks one port at a time. You enjoy each stop and earn a salary while you’re at it. 

Check the job postings available on sites like All Cruise Jobs, Cruise Jobs Guide, or CruiseShipJob.com.

5. Learn affiliate marketing

What is affiliate marketing? It’s promoting a product (by another store, another person or your own) and earning a commission when a reader clicks your link and buys. 

In some cases, like in Amazon affiliates, this customer doesn’t have to buy the product you were promoting. They just have to click your link and buy something within 24 hours after clicking. (This period is called the cookie period and varies between e-commerce sites). 

The potential to earn a load of cash with affiliate marketing is always possible. But before you are paid your first dollar, you might need to work without compensation for the first several months (sometimes years). 

The good thing about affiliate marketing is that it could be a source of passive income. Once you’ve started earning, it is possible to leave it and it would earn you commissions even when you’re sleeping.

6. Renting out your house

If your heart is set that you’re going to be traveling for a while and your house will be left empty, the easiest way to earn money while you’re off to exploring the world is by renting out your house. 

You need to be thorough when choosing who to rent out your property. Not only because that is your home you’re entrusting to a stranger, but also because the rent would serve as a big part of your travel money. Being in another country unable to go back home or afford accommodation because the rent you’re expecting hasn’t come in can be a nightmare. 

To be sure, ask for advance payments and do background checks. 

7. Drive or Deliver for Cash

If you’re just traveling across the country and you’re planning to go on a massive road trip, one way to earn money (without actually working a computer-based job) is to deliver packages. You can even plan this out to match your itinerary, so the delivery isn’t a bother to your road trip. 

So where do you start? Try Roadie (if you’re traveling across the US) or Briddy (if you’re traveling internationally). 

8. Publish an eBook

For writers who want to publish books, the process has become friendlier thanks to ebooks (or digital books). Unlike before when you need to have a publisher to go through with book publishing, you can write and publish an ebook completely only. 

Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing. Apple iBooks Author, Kobo: Writing Life, Barnes & Noble Nook Press, Draft2Digital, Smashwords and other similar platforms accept ebook submissions and if your ebook passes their respective guidelines, they will carry your book on their online bookstores. 

Of course, these publishing platforms will get a cut for every copy of your ebook sold. 

Everything can be done, from writing to editing, then publishing to marketing, regardless of your location so you can enjoy traveling while becoming an established ebook author – and earning money!

9. Become a Tour Guide

What’s great about this gig is that you don’t need to be a resident of the place you’re touring. You just need to love telling stories, meeting new people, and talking to strangers. If you have a massive amount of trivia under your belt, then try your luck at becoming a local tour guide. 

You have two options:

  • Join a company: Tours by Locals, Rent a Local, Shiroube, and With Locals are just some examples of companies hiring people to host tour guides. There are also niche providers like Traveling Spoon, which focuses on touring local cuisine and restaurants. 
  • Sell your own tour guide service: Use a resource like FREETOUR.com to create your own service and market it from here. You can also build your own website or just stick to social media platforms (like Instagram, Yelp, Facebook, and so on). 

10. Sell Photos or Videos

For professional photographers and videographers, you can still use your skills to earn money while traveling. 

Mix and match these methods to maximize your earnings: 

  • Sell directly: Take pictures of your travels, then sell them to resources like Adobe Stock, FoapShutterstock or 500px
  • Go freelance: Get hired to document a wedding, birthday, or any other event where you’re staying. Do projects that require video production or professional photos. 
  • Compete: If you have what it takes, join competitions like Go Pro Awards. The prizes could help you fund more traveling in the future. 

You can also go the influencer route, since you’re already good at taking jaw-dropping photos or catchy videos, there’s a good chance you’d be able to attract a lot of people who would gladly join you virtually with your travels. 

11. Apply for a VA job

A VA (short for virtual assistant) is someone who is a Jack-of-all-trades. It’s more than just a secretarial position though. For online eCommerce, social media marketing, or digital marketing, VAs are able to perform a wide range of tasks from transcribing to sending emails, writing content to answering live-chat support, and so on. 

Some VAs have a more specific job description. For example, a social media VA will be handling Facebook or Twitter accounts, while a graphic design VA will be creating logos and other graphics, editing photos, and performing other creative tasks. 

General VAs earn $10 to $25 an hour, while technical VAs (programming VA) earn double/triple this amount.

12. Become a Farmhand

Here’s another job you can earn money at while traveling to rural parts of a country like Australia, New Zealand or Canada. It’s seasonal, pays OK, and doesn’t require technical skills to do. 

You’d have to be happy getting your hands dirty since you’ll be working outdoors at the farm. Depending on the job you land, you can apply as a fruit-picker or work helping out with farm animals. 

Some of these jobs may even include free accommodation, so if you wish to explore one country at a time, then this route may be ideal for you. 

13. Explore House-sitting

Imagine being able to live in another country rent-free and you get to enjoy the local community a few hours a day. The catch?

You have to keep the house you’re staying at clean and safe. 

That’s what house-sitting is all about. Sometimes, the homeowner even doubles the duty of the housesitter by adding pet-sitting into the mix while they travel for several weeks or months to another country. 

This can be a win-win for someone interested. Make sure you agree to the terms though. Some do not pay any compensation (but offer free stay), others do but offer only minimal pay.

Start by checking available gigs on Trusted Housesitters, Mind My House, Luxury House Sitting, and Housecarers.com, among others. 

14. Get Part-time Jobs on Resorts and Similar Places

Here’s another job that often provides free accommodation, but you’ll have less time to explore. If you’re happy traveling during your day off, you can get a job to earn money at a local resort, beach house, hotel, theme park, summer camp, and other similar places. 

Jobs here are similar to jobs on a cruise ship – you can find kitchen crew positions, entertainment, housekeeping, lifeguard crew, security, and so on. 

If you’re lucky and you land a job on a  beachfront property, you get to enjoy the paradise views for as long as you work there. 

Just make sure to check your contract before signing, especially for summer camps, since some positions may require you to stay on the property throughout the duration of your contract. Being forbidden to explore the local community is totally the opposite of your goal of traveling while earning money, so don’t settle for terms like these. 

15. Apply for a Home-Based Customer Service Job

A laptop or mini-computer with a portable monitor to bring with you anywhere can be the only investment you need to fund your travel and keep a job while enjoying every destination you are in. 

Imagine working 4 to 6 hours a day answering customer inquiries online, then the rest of the day lounging on the beaches of Bali, or exploring a particular country. It’s possible with home-based customer service jobs. 

You have an option as:

  • Voice customer service jobs: You’ll need noise-cancelling headsets for the job, good communication skills and a genuine need to provide support.
  • Live-chat customer service jobs: You’ll need good writing skills, fast typing skills, problem-solving ability and interpersonal skills. 

Both types require stable internet connections and a quiet spot you can work at. Salary ranges from $10 to $40 an hour, depending on the company and your own experience. 

16. Become a translator 

Do you know of another language aside from your own? If you do and would want to use this skill to earn money while traveling, try applying for translator jobs. 

Translators are paid by the word (or per audio minute), so if you’re able to translate chunks of text quicker, then you can work on more and potentially earn more. 

Audio minutes are paid between $2 to $7 per minute of translated audio. If paid per word, expect to earn around 1 cent USD per word. Although very rarely do you find translation jobs paying hourly, you can earn $17 per hour if you do land a more permanent translation job. 

Check with Gengo, Voxtab, GMR Transcription, LanguageLine Solutions, Acclaro, TransPerfect, Lingosaur, and Translate.com, to name a few. 

17. Get a DJ gig

If you know how to DJ, this gig can be found in bars, hotels, beach resorts, and other party venues. You can find a place where you can serve as the house DJ for several weeks or months so that you’ll be able to enjoy a stable salary throughout your stint. 

If you want more flexibility, you can offer your DJ services on your own and book gigs based on your own networking. This would need a lot of work from your end, but if you’re good at what you do and you’ve shown your talent, you enjoy 100% of the earnings (instead of the venue taking a commission out of your fee). 

For those with an accounting background or just love bookkeeping, you can offer several kinds of services online, such as:

  • Financial planning: Help someone get out of debt, or reach a financial goal by creating a realistic financial plan. 
  • Bookkeeping: Manage and help other people with their taxes, so they’ll be able to submit their books on time. 

The amount you earn would depend on how many clients you accept. 

19. Take on Freelance Gigs 

There are hundreds of freelance gigs available online, that you can leverage to earn money while traveling. It’s impossible not to find one that fits your skills and preference. Aside from the gigs above, you can also check out freelance gigs on: 

  • Transcribing
  • Graphic design
  • Consulting
  • Legal (law gigs)
  • Podcasting
  • Marketing
  • Programming
  • Product testing
  • Illustrating, animating, tattoo designing
  • Web designing
  • Research
  • Lead generation
  • App development
  • Game development
  • Voiceover
  • Closed captioning
  • Video editing
  • Data entry
  • Game or website testers
  • Email marketing
  • Life coaching
  • Online recruiting (headhunter gigs)
  • Forum posting
  • Creating meal plans or lesson plans
  • Font creation
  • Fortune-telling
  • Secret shopping

Of course, the fees you earn from taking on short jobs or freelance gigs vary. In some cases, such as Fiverr.com, you may even have total control over pricing your services.

20. Play Online Poker or Day-Trade

I categorized these two in one entry because while there is a potential to earn BIG, the methods are pretty risky, even for professional online poker players and day-traders. 

Note that it can be super easy to win $1,000 in one virtual table but you can also LOSE that much or more as quickly as you earned them. 

This is also true for trading in the stock exchange. The risks are always there, and the bigger amount you invest, the bigger the risk and bigger in potential returns. 

If you’re willing to stress it out and you have in-depth knowledge in poker or stock trading, then I say go for it. You can do both these activities online, so you can technically earn from them wherever your travels lead you.

The Bottom Line

Living the nomad life means you have to be flexible. If you’re open to washing dishes for the day or becoming an au pair, you’ll survive traveling while earning money. 

Some people who used to work office jobs get to explore the world by becoming fire dancers, singing for local bars, painting portraits for other tourists, becoming camp counselors, and wearing the hats of various cool jobs they wouldn’t even think about when they were still working an 8-to-5, cubicle job. 

There are job boards, such as SupportAdventure.com, that were made specifically to support nomads working from all parts of the world. Also, check Upwork, Fiverr, FlexJobs, mTurk, and Freelancer.com for available seasonal, part-time, full-time, or odd jobs you can apply to.

If you’re lucky, you can talk to your current company, ask about turning your job into a remote position, and keep your job (and compensation as well). Of course, this wouldn’t be possible for ALL kinds of jobs, since many jobs still require you to be there in person. But with technological advancements that allow us to get connected from any part of the world and devices that you can bring with you anywhere, earning money while traveling is a possibility. 

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