How to travel and still earn money

By Michele Koh Morollo

Earn money whilst travelling

Those of us bitten by the travel bug dream of unchaining ourselves from our desks, breaking free from our office cubicles, packing our bags and heading out to explore the world. But leaving the security of a paycheck can be frightening, and our financial insecurities often end up holding us back from making our travel fantasies a reality. If you have a passion for travel, the good news is, you don’t have to wait till you retire to trot the globe. There are many career options for people who love to travel. Here are some of them.


Cost of Living Surveyor

Cost of living surveyors get paid to travel to cities around the world to collect prices of everything from baby food to petrol, with the purpose of compiling data that will put together an accurate picture of how much it will cost to live in those cities as an expatriate. The info gathered is usually sold to embassies or multinational companies who need to know how much living allowance to give their staff when then relocate them to cities as popular as Paris or as exotic as Juba in South Sudan.

Consultants have specialized knowledge that can help companies fix complex problems. Because of this specialized knowledge, companies all around the globe pay for consultants to make regular on-site visits to assist them with problems as they come up. Remember George Clooney’s character in Up In the Air? Well, that’s how much travelling a competent consultant can expect.

Concert Road Crew
If you like live music or theatre and are fit enough for manual labour, then being part of a concert, dance, circus or theatre road crew is an exciting way to travel. Road crews, or “roadies” are the people who help set up and take down the stage, take care of the sound, lighting, riggers and instruments that are required for concerts and live performances. An added benefit besides frequent travel, are the opportunities you get to hang out with entertainment artists or celebrities and perhaps even access to exclusive parties.

International Aid Worker
The desire to help those in need, combined with a curiosity about different cultures is what motivates those who choose to be International Aid Workers. If you have a background in medicine, nursing, public policy, education, health or crisis stabilization, disaster relief, agriculture, engineering or any other relevant area of expertise, you can work for organizations like Doctors Without Borders, USAID of Oxfam, to help communities in disaster stricken countries around the world.

Air Stewardesses & Yacht Crews
No international flight would be possible without a crew of service staff to take care of the passengers and ensure that everything is in order. The job of an air stewardess can be tiring and might involve jetlag and achy feet, but if you are a people person who likes checking out new airports and staying at swanky hotels in some of the world’s most glamourous capitals, then this may be the job for you. If you prefer the sea, then a job as a deckhand, cook, or stewardess on a yacht might be a better bet.

If you’re not exactly looking for a career that involves travelling, but you’d like to make a little pocket money while on vacation, here are some options:

Travel Writing
While it usually takes a bit of effort to write for well-known magazines, there are many travel websites and blogs looking for travellers who can contribute articles and photos of destinations they are visiting. If you’re backpacking, one way to cover the cost of breakfast is to write a review about the place your staying at. While most small publications don’t pay that much, the extra money will certainly come in handy.

Teaching English
If English is your native language and you have a TEFL and preferably a degree, then you can quite easily teach English in another country. There are many schools in Thailand, China, Indonesia and rural communities around the world who need English teachers, so you’ll have no problem making a decent living for a couple of months while enjoying a new destination and getting to know the locals.

Work at a Farm
World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms ( is a global network of organic farms where you can work and get room and board for free. At some farms, you might even get paid. In Asia, is affiliated with farms in Nepal, Bangladesh, China, India, the Philippines and Taiwan, so you can work your green fingers as you take in the sights in these destinations.


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