The travel bug is a very hungry bug and it bites thousands every year. The only problem is it’s a very expensive bite to be bitten by. There are many reasons why people say they can’t travel right now. “I’m saving for a house”, “the kids are too young”, I can’t take off too much time from work”…etc.
But I am here to tell you that anyone at anytime can see the world. There are ways of travelling with your whole family and make money on the road by using your computer.
When you travel you have two kinds of needs:
- Basic survival needs: which include a place to put your bag and sleep, and sustenance a.k.a food and water.
- The ‘reason you travel’ needs: which is the money you spend to do all the expensive touristy stuff. The kinds of expenses you need to justify by saying “well I came all the way” and “this is why I wanted to travel, to see stuff”.
So how do you meet these needs and not go broke doing it? Well here’s how I did it.
Food and Shelter
Volunteering is a great way of structuring your travel and getting a place to stay. Most the time you exchange food and accommodation for work. It’s an affordable way of seeing a country for a longer period of time and allows you to really get to know the country that you are visiting.
Here are three sites where you can get free accommodation in any country for you and your family.
Workaway is a volunteer programme where you exchange work for food and accommodation. The idea behind it is a cultural exchange. There are thousands of hosts all around the world asking for all sorts of different requirements. You can apply as a single, couple or even as a family.
The work ranges from helping in a BnB to helping out on a farm, or even just spending time with someone because they are lonely and need company in their old age. You work 5 hours a day for 5 days a week and get in exchange a place to stay in the form of a chalet, tent, caravan or room in the house. Also, you get given food either with your hosts or in the form of a budget that you can spend as you please.
Like work away woofing is a volunteer programme where you exchange hours of work for food and shelter however it is more focussed on organic farming and agricultural trades. Wwoofing can take you around the world and the experience can change from host to host.
When between volunteer placements a great idea is having a look at couch surfing. This is a site where people offer to host travellers for free. Often the people on the site have been travellers before and want to repay the favour to other travellers. Couch surfing is a great way of meeting new people and of getting to know the culture of the place that you visit.
It feels like there a hole in your pocket when you travel. Money is always going out but nothing is going in. Especially if you are travelling for a long time it becomes hugely anxiety provoking to not have any prospect of increasing the weight of your savings pocket.
Some people make money blogging or vlogging or selling their photos. But that requires a well-established market for what you have to offer. Not everyone has the time or the ability to create this avenue. But here are three sites that anyone can use and find work to do on the road.
Upwork is an American based site and hosts a huge variety of freelance jobs. If you are bilingual there are jobs for translators. There are jobs where you edit short texts. There are even voiceover jobs where you are sent a text and are asked to read and record it. Anything you can think of you can find. It is a well-established platform and you are protected by the site if the client whose job you do doesn’t pay. The clients pay into your Upwork account which accumulates and then can be transferred to your bank account or PayPal account.
Copify is a U.K based site and is a similar platform to Upwork but it is a lot more strict about who it recruits. It’s a platform for writers where you apply to join and get access to hundreds of different writing jobs.
You don’t need to have any formal training to apply. You are given a topic and then asked to write 200 words on the topic for a client. You then get paid according to your skill level and rating on the site. Copify also pays through a PayPal account and you are protected by the organisation if clients don’t pay.
Like the previous two sites, Fiverr is an online platform for a variety of jobs, and services called ‘gigs’. On the site, you decide what you are willing to sell and then sell you ‘gig’ in £5 segments. For example, if you are selling voice overs you may sell 100 words for £5.
The nice thing about Fiverr is that you can create the ‘gig’ you want to sell rather than choose from the jobs being asked for. So if you can think of a ‘gig’ that you want to sell then you can create a profile accordingly.
I believe anyone can travel. The only scary part is making the decision to do it and then from there you only have to figure out what to pack. Change is scary for anyone but the rewards are life changing.
By: Kirsten Farquharson