The 10 Best Ways to Fund a Travel Lifestyle

If you’ve ever thought about traveling long term, or even indefinitely, then you’re probably interested in learning about the best options for making money while you travel. Too many people believe that travel is a privilege only for those wealthy enough to afford the luxury of it. The truth is, if you’re willing to sacrifice just a little luxury and comfort in exchange for greater experiences and adventure, travel becomes more than affordable! In fact, you can actually travel long term for less than the cost living many places in the U.S.

If you’re like me and you don’t like the idea of having to go back home to get another job and save up again for your next trip, then you will want to replenish your funds along the way. That’s why I’ve put together this list of the top ten options for funding a travel lifestyle.

Whether you just want to extend your travels beyond your allotted budget, or you want to turn your travels into an indefinite lifestyle of adventure, these are your best choices for keeping funds rolling in without having to turn back to save up again.

#10 – BUSKING

Photo by Maaria Lohiya

A long time favorite of vagabond travelers, busking is a simple concept that anyone can use to make a little (in some cases a lot of) extra cash pretty much anywhere in the world. If you have the confidence to play an instrument, sing, dance, or show off nearly any other type of talent in public, you possess the ability to make money busking on the streets or in other public areas.

Who knows, busking might even lead you to stardom: 9 Famous Artists Who Began as Street Performers

#9 – SELLING ART, HANDICRAFTS, OR OTHER GOODS

Photo by Artem Bali

If you’re an artist, handy with making crafts, or simply have a knack for selling things, you have the potential to support your desired lifestyle anywhere in the world by selling your goods.

From walking around and selling handmade bracelets on populated beaches, to setting up shop in a local artists’ market, to commissioning your products out to established shops, there is a lot of potential for making money from your artistic talents and some basic sales skills.

#8 – SERVICE INDUSTRY JOBS

Whether you have a passion for it or merely see service industry work as a means to an end, opportunities can be found everywhere in the world. If you already have experience bartending, serving tables, or with other work in the service industry, opportunities will be that much easier to find. If you don’t yet have any service experience, the service industry is one of the most welcoming for entry level employment all around the world.

#7 – AGRICULTURAL LABOR

Photo by Vince Fleming

A favorite amongst travelers who are interested in easy to find opportunities that often include free room and board, agricultural labor is a great option for anyone who wants to fully immerse their self within other local cultures. Harvesting fruit and other produce, traditional farming, and WWOOF-ing (World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms) are amongst the most common types of agricultural labor work for travelers. While many of these opportunities are volunteer based for people who are more interested in simply exchanging a little work for free room, board, and cultural immersion, paid opportunities are not hard to find and can be a great way to fund your desire for long term travel.

#6 – WORKING A PASSAGE

Photo by Luke Bender

The idea of getting paid to travel rather than the other way around makes this a great option for anyone who wants to save their hard earned cash on more important things than getting from point A to B. Working on cruise lines, private yachts, or overland expeditions are a few of the possibilities for getting paid to travel from one destination to another. In most cases, all expenses are usually paid for while in transit. That means you’re traveling for free until you get to where you’re going. Any income coming in can be put into savings for you to enjoy more luxurious experiences or longer gaps between jobs!

#5 – FREELANCING

Photo courtesy of Thought Catalog

With a wide variety of possibilities, such as being a personal assistant, copywriter, web designer, marketer, financial bookkeeper, translator, and many more, freelancing is a great option for anyone interested in self-employment, working on or offline.

Some benefits of being a freelancer includes more time and scheduling flexibility than traditional jobs and little to no cost to get started, especially if you already have the tools and skills required for the work you are offering. Online platforms such as Upwork, Fivver, and Freelancer help freelancers find gigs and connect with potential clients. The more experience a freelancer has, the more success they are sure to find, but even those brand new to freelancing can potentially start earning money right away.

#4 – WORKING IN TOURISM

Photo by Rakesh Shetty

Working in tourism is a great option for anyone who is interested in staying in one place throughout that location’s tourist season. You can fully immerse yourself in the local culture for an extended period of time while saving up for the next leg of your journey. Opportunities in tourism can range from service industry jobs during peak season in popular travel destinations, to working as a tour guide for a tour company, to operating your own private and specialized tour business.

#3 – WORKING IN MEDIA

Photo by Jakob Owens

Journalism, photography, video and music production, and social media management and marketing, are just a few of many options available for working in media as a means to support a travel lifestyle. The benefit of working in media is that you have the choice of building a career with an established company or working independently as a self-employed contractor, freelancer, or business owner. If you go the route of working for a company and travel is part of the job, the company will likely pay for your travels on top of your salary. The downside to this is that the company will also likely be choosing when and where you go, whether the location is desirable or not. As a self-employed media contractor, freelancer, or business owner, such as a blogger or social media marketer, you get to work whenever you want from wherever you want.

#2 – TEACHING

Photo by Tribesh Kayastha

Whether you want to teach on location or remotely from the comfort of your laptop, there will always be demand for good teachers and private tutors. As popular as teaching English as a foreign language is amongst lifestyle travelers, teaching abroad and online is by no means limited to the English language. Teachers of other foreign languages, math teachers, life and business coaches, and even fitness coaches all around the world are supporting their desired lifestyles both on and offline. Whatever knowledge you’re interested in learning about and willing to pay for, chances are there are plenty of other people also willing to pay you for that same knowledge.

For a great example of a highly successful online teacher, check out self-proclaimed video game nerd turned author and fitness expert, Steve Kamb’s website, www.nerdfitness.com.

#1 – BECOMING A DIGITAL NOMAD

Photo courtesy of Creative Commons Zero

Blogging, coaching, content creation, consulting, finance, freelancing, marketing, media, professional gambling, publishing, sales, SEO, teaching, writing, and the list goes on. When it comes to being a digital nomad, the possibilities for supporting your ideal lifestyle are practically endless. You can work literally anywhere in the world from wherever you can connect to the internet and, contrary to many beliefs, you don’t necessarily have to be connected all the time.

Don’t be fooled though by deceptive online marketers. For most people, achieving a digitally nomadic lifestyle is one of the hardest things to succeed at. But, for those who are determined to settle for nothing less, the payoff is well worth the effort. Achieving success as a digital nomad rewards it victors with the ultimate freedom of location independence. And, those who take digital nomadism to the ultimate level can even achieve the greatest freedom. Some digital nomads work as little as only a few hours a week, achieving not only a lifestyle of location independence, but also one that rewards them with the freedom of time!


I hope you got some great value out of this post.

Please comment below if you have any thoughts or questions.

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