Learning the best ways to save money and make money while you’re travelling means you can travel for longer. It may even allow you to roam for as long as you want to …
WorkAway is a fantastic website that puts you in contact with hosts all over the world allowing you to exchange a few hours of your time for accommodation and food. You can save so much money especially in more expensive countries within Europe as well as USA, Australia and New Zealand. This is also an excellent opportunity to experience local life in your current location. While travelling New Zealand in a camper van, we would periodically use WorkAway as a break from the van for a few days to sleep in an actual bed, take a decent shower, get our laundry done and eat home cooked meals etc in exchange for some cleaning and gardening, easy! Check out the website here . The type of work ranges from helping with Childcare, Cleaning, Gardening, helping in vineyards, farm help, looking after animals, teaching languages … loads of stuff. Remember, this isn’t paid work, so make sure you’re not taken advantage of, the work should only be max 5 hours a day really in exchange for accommodation and food.
Using the CouchSurfing website and App can be a great way to save your hard earned dosh and maybe make some friends along the way. The name might have you believe its all about crashing on someone’s couch, but that isn’t always the case. Many CouchSurfing hosts have spare rooms they use for CouchSurfers, others have a pull-out sofa-bed in their living room and some literally do just have a couch you can crash on, but you can search for specific preferences (e.g. Private room only) depending on what you’re comfortable with. CouchSurfing can be a god-send, especially if you’re travelling in an expensive country, where even the cheapest hostels are expensive. If you’re anxious about staying with a stranger, go for someone who’s got lots of reviews from fellow CouchSurfers to put your mind at ease.
We’ve stayed with some really great people over the years in Norway, USA and New Zealand and when I have the space, I’ll repay the favour to the backpacking community and host travellers in my own house. Many CouchSurfing hosts have been CouchSurfers in the past.
Getting a job that offers accommodation as part of the job package can save you time, effort and money. It means you don’t have to worry about commuting and it also saves you from finding somewhere to live in a place you’re unfamiliar with, which can be an absolute pain in the arse, especially in the UK where finding somewhere to live as a non-UK citizen can be especially tough. Even for flat shares in the UK, some landlords will want large deposits, proof that you’ve had a job for at least two months or payment upfront of several months rent, which as a backpacker is not easy. Live-in positions aren’t a bed of roses however. For a start, they’re usually hospitality jobs (My working background is hotel front desk and management) which trust me aren’t well paid and you end up working long, unsociable hours and the accommodation is usually rubbish, but they can be really good fun too, especially when you have a good team and you’re all in the same boat.
If you want a live-in position, but you’re really not into the hospitality side of things, try an Au Pair job. Au Pair jobs are (unfairly) usually targeted at women, which is a shame because I know lots of men who would make amazing Au Pairs. If you care for school aged children it usually means you get 9am – 3pm to yourself allowing you to explore the surrounding area, many families will also give you use of a car. If you speak another language this might work to your advantage as many families want an Au Pair to teach their children a language. A couple of good websites are Go Overseas and Au Pair
House Sitting and Pet Sitting
Possibly my favourite way to make money. Sitting on my arse doing absolutely nothing, except maybe looking after cute AF animals. How could you not want this job!? In Wellington I’ve made about £300 this month simply by house sitting and pet sitting. Ok it’s not quite enough to live on, I still work in a bar, but its a really good supplement to your income. The website I use in New Zealand is Pawshake .
The long-term traveller. Take your job with you.
If you’re one of those extremely lucky individuals whose current job can be performed remotely then you’re already halfway there. And if you’re not, it might not be immediately obvious, but if you think outside the box there are hundreds of jobs that can be performed remotely from your laptop and all you need is an internet connection, which is now available pretty much worldwide. It may involve some studying to gain a qualification or you might need to set up your own business, but if you’re serious about ditching the 9-5 trudge and the dreaded commute for the freedom of a nomadic lifestyle, it might be worth looking into. Some examples are: Freelance Writers, Graphic Designers, Translators, Online Teachers, Social Media Marketing and Web Design.
What’s really exciting is, this type of work used to be something only available to freelance workers, but now more and more companies are opening their eyes to the benefits of remote working and are adopting this system for their employees. They save money on facilities and overheads while being able to broaden their recruitment area to hire the most talented people from anywhere in the world. In the next few years, more and more employees will be working remotely, a triumph for travellers.
Once you’re travelling, you might find that you spend less money than you did at home, especially if you’re staying somewhere that has comparatively low living costs. It’s amazing how much money you can save when you’re not paying UK rent prices.