Always dreamed of travelling but never seem able to save up enough money to go? Gone are the days when seeing the world is something that only the well-off and care-free gap year students can enjoy. Thanks to amazing developments in communications and the rise of the flexible, online jobs market, people from all walks of life can now find ways to make money on the go.
First, think about the job you do now and whether or not there is any way you could switch it to a freelance position. If you can do your job from a computer anywhere and learn why linux is better than windows, why not propose to your employer a break during which you ‘work from home’ – wherever that home may be? Hotels, restaurants and bars all around the world now offer surprisingly fast wireless connections, even in some of the most far-flung destinations, so you can set up an office on a palm-fringed beach in Thailand, a mountain-top in India or anywhere that takes your fancy. Software like Skype allows you to keep in touch wherever you are, while many local mobile phone operators will offer SIM only deals featuring cheap international calls for whenever you need to call home.
If your current job won’t allow you to go freelance, why not consider setting up on your own? Particularly suited to those who want to travel for a longer period of time, freelance work covers a surprisingly broad section of skills. Writers, designers, programmers, translators, artists and many other professionals can find plenty of work by trawling the web. Although the rates of pay aren’t always excellent, particularly for those just getting started, living in a country with a low cost of living is a great way to start out as a freelancer and easily cover your bills. Try checking out message boards like Gumtree and Craigslist to find work, or search your industry’s online forums for advice.
If your skills and expertise don’t fit into either of these areas, don’t worry – there are still plenty of ways in which you can make money while travelling the world. Do you speak another language? If so you’ll find plenty of opportunities for bi-lingual people in many holiday resorts around the world, with work in bars, hotels and restaurants readily available for those with the right language skills. Or perhaps you have experience or interests that could translate into the hospitality trade? For many people, working on a cruise ship is a great way to see the world, and many are surprised to learn that people with skills as diverse as cooking and hairdressing are often in demand. Good with kids? Nannies and au pairs are always needed in almost every part of the world, while investing in a TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) qualification will make it easy for you to find paid teaching work anywhere you wish to travel.
While many people spend years saving up to see the world, not everyone has to do the same. With a little planning and some motivation, you can travel to all the places you’ve dreamed of without breaking the bank.