How To Make Money From Traveling (Cash In On Your Wanderlust)

Satisfy your curiosity about the world as you earn on the side. Read further for everything you need to know on how to make money from traveling.

Hobby Cents Staff Writer
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Travel broadens the mind, but why leave the comforts of home for some dodgy hotel in the lesser-explored parts of Spain. Don’t risk the water – read and wonder about the beauty of the world around you by following a travel blog or reading one of the many available travel magazines.

Better still, buy a coffee table book that has high-resolution images of those far-flung shores.

Often, the people who write that copy or take those pics are those who have been bitten hard by the travel bug. They are in the enviable position of making money while exploring the cultures, sights, sounds, and cuisine of this great big blue orb that we call home. The question is – could you?

The good news is that you don’t even have to leave your home shores. You might be surprised at just how many points of interest there are in your region.

That travel bug doesn’t have to bite hard; it can just give a nibble – and before you know it, you might very well be making money off your joy at seeing and experiencing places and things that intrigue others.

And the best thing is that you’ll also be satisfying your own curiosity about the world around you.

But, can you make money on the back of that bug? Let’s take a closer look.

What Do You Need To Get Started On A Career Making Money From Traveling?

A valid passport is a great start if you intend to travel internationally. But there is much more than that small book when it comes to your prep.

The first is to decide just which countries will be the most rewarding for you to explore – and what sites you want to see. There are countries that have received extensive coverage by barefoot nomads and seasoned travelers alike, but that is not to say that they do not bear re-exploring.

Who wants to know what you should wear while exploring the Parisian catacombs or the Jungles of Papua New Guinea? Who wants fashion tips for that poker game in the Salon Prive of a well-known Monaco casino. The opportunities are just about endless.

And if you can find that little-explored corner of the globe, you can be assured that there are people who have been longing to go there – and are willing to pay for your impressions of a destination.

You are going to need some basic equipment, depending on where you intend to go – and remember, the places that you go to might not always be accessible by plane – or even public transport.

So with that in mind, let’s start off with a good pair of walking shoes. Don’t just go into a footwear store and take something off track. Spend a bit of time with the professional salespeople. Even before doing that, know the sorts of terrain that you will be encountering.

If you are going to be sticking to city streets, then a comfy set of big brand walking and multi-purpose shoes is going to be just fine. On the other hand, if you are going to be trekking through the jungle, a great pair of water-resistant hiking boots and purpose-made specialist socks are an absolute must.

make money from traveling hiking
Have a pair of shoes that will suit your travel destination.

Always ask for advice. A camping goods store is a wonderful place to start.

A hint, wear those shoes in before hitting the ground in your destination of choice. The question is, “Are you going to be transporting the second pair of stylish shoes you’ve chosen?”

That hardshell luggage is going to look great when it comes around on the luggage turnstile – but it’s not going to provide value when you are going down a dusty road in the back of beyond. For that, you are going to need a great backpack.

This is one of those occasions when spending that little bit extra is going to pay great dividends. Go big or stay home.

Make sure that backpack you choose is from a manufacturer that knows their business. Also, make sure that it is a comfortable fit, weatherproof, and able to carry everything you need.

That includes clothing that is suitable for the environments that you will experience. A good rule of thumb is to stick to natural materials like cotton, but if you are going to encounter inclement weather, you might want to consider some man-made fabrics that can shrug off the water.

Make sure that you have clothing that can cope with changing weather conditions. And stay away from jeans if there might be a downpour. Nothing will strip you of the will to live more quickly than a pair of sodden jeans.

In this day and age, advice about having a camera is almost moot. You’re going to have that hyper-advanced smartphone with you. Some of the best can take photos that will rival the best cameras in the world. Just make sure that you have a robust phone cover.

And it doesn’t hurt to have a backup phone in that backpack. Smartphones have been known to leap from hands in lakes, rivers, and the salty sea at every available opportunity. Also, make sure that your photos are backed up to the cloud. Check if that happens automatically – it pays to be sure. 

What Is The Easiest Way To Make Money While Traveling?

Travel is expensive. It doesn’t matter if you are enjoying pizza on the Piazza San Marco in Venice or a goat stew in Jamaica – your money is going to run out quicker than you think.

But you can certainly slow the drain on your bank account or put a plug in it and even build up a nice nest egg while you explore.

Firstly, start a travel blog and make sure to update it each and every day. It may seem like work, but it’s a case of work and play at the same time. Send out reciprocal link requests to other travel writers and make sure that you update social media each day. 

The more followers that you get, the greater likelihood there is that you start to attract the attention of big sponsors. Remember those shoes? Get 500,000 followers, and then you can get those shoes for free – and probably get a nice paycheck each month – affiliate marketing works.

And do put links to products available online in your blog. It’s a form of passive income that can pay for that drink with the pizza – and maybe a bit more. Becoming an Amazon affiliate (for instance) is easy, and your story makes money while you sleep. 

But even before you start traveling, start preparing. You are going to need a nest egg, so pare down. Sell everything you don’t need and cut your living expenses to the bone. Get used to instant noodles – the traveler’s best friend.

make money from traveling cash
Remember that cash is still king when it comes to traveling.

That brings us to just how you access your funds. Take out cards from all the major credit providers. You will be surprised at the fact that some countries do not accept many cards issued by financial institutions. The idea that cash is king still valid.

The U.S. dollar is accepted all over the world. Carry enough, but not so much that being robbed is going to bring your exploration to a halt. 

And here is possibly the most valuable hint of all. You are not going to engage with your audience if you do not know your subject matter. Do your research. Spend some time every day reading up on just where you are.

Interact with the locals (a translator app can help). Human stories sell. Each person you meet has a story that may have escaped the attention of others. And be polite. Know the social mores of the place that you are visiting, ask permission to take photos – and NEVER refuse a meal.

Have some bits and bobs that you can hand out to those who provide hospitality; it never goes unnoticed. Be humble and listen. Take notes or record every interaction. Humanize folk in your blog. People don’t only like places – they like other people.

And you can also sell those pics you take to stock photo companies. Don’t stop selling just because you are on the road less traveled. 

How Much Money Can You Make?

The sky is the limit, but is that what you want to do? Travel broadens the mind, and you will see new sights and is a hobby in which you can make new friends where ever you go.

The best travel gurus can be paid a fortune. Online travel guide publishers (for instance) can pay you well for constant updates. Photography can pay very well. But each income stream relies on incredible discipline and the ability to stay focused. Your travel becomes your job.

Can You Make Traveling A Career?

Yes. You can. And you can do that while opening your mind to new experiences. It can be a career that is simply fun – and fuels the mind of the curious. But “career” implies long-term.

Be aware that even the excitement of travel can dull – but the contacts that you make while traveling can take your professional life in a whole new direction.

As a beginner, take each day as it comes. Set up that website or blog. Make sure that it is updated each and every day. Send out those great photos to agencies.

Make contacts, accept work for a week and always, and always be gracious, polite, and have a smile on your face. You are not only a representative of your country – but also your own best salesperson.

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