Wondering how to work and travel at the same time?
The world is your oyster and the time has never been better to work and travel. In fact, more and more people are looking to work and travel at the same time.
It’s no secret that work and travel can go hand in hand. The desire to explore new places and experience different cultures is one of the main reasons people decide to work and travel. And fortunately, there are now more ways than ever to make it happen!
These include working odd jobs while traveling, volunteering your time abroad, working a remote position for a company, freelancing, and starting your own business.
Working and Traveling around the World
If you work and travel around the world, there are a few things to consider.
One is that work hours can be more flexible than in other work environments where people work 9-5 depending on their company’s policy.
This means you might have to put in some hard work when it comes to packing your schedule with activities during those work hours. However, you also have more time to enjoy the places you’re visiting.
You’ll need to make sure you have a good work-life balance so that you can still enjoy your trip, and not just work the whole time. This is important because if you’re working too much, it takes away from the point of traveling in the first place.
Another thing to consider is your work visa. If you’re officially working for a company at your destination, you’ll need to get a work visa before you can start working in your desired country. The process of getting a work visa can be long and complicated, so it’s important to do your research and plan ahead.
An important thing to consider is your income. Working and traveling around the world can be expensive, so you’ll need to make sure you have a steady income to support your travel habit.
There are many different ways to make work and travel happen, with the following four overarching categories encompassing the various avenues. This first layer analysis will look into the details, as well as the pro and cons of each.
The Original Work and Travel
Barring the era of the remote workers, work and travel had an initial definition. In fact, even if you google “Work and Travel”, you will find websites offering work and travel programs that are mostly for students and young adults.
These programs offer the opportunity for applicants to get a job overseas while also allowing them to travel through a more structured program format.
Temporary/Odd Jobs for Work and Travel
Nonetheless, there are many ways to organize such activities yourself. Working odd jobs while traveling is probably the most popular way to work and travel. This could involve anything from being a barista in Australia to working on a farm in New Zealand.
You can use websites like HelpX and Workaway to find job or volunteer opportunities oversea. It’s a great way to see the world and meet new people, while also earning some money to help fund your travels.
Some of these opportunities are volunteer-based. This could involve working at a local school or orphanage, helping out at a wildlife sanctuary, or even teaching English as a foreign language.
You will usually get food, accommodation, and sometimes a stipend in exchange for your services.
It’s a great way to give back and make a difference, while also getting to experience a new culture.
- One of the key advantages of this is really the cultural exchange and immersion that can happen. I have seen young travelers find incredible jobs like working with huskies in the Arctic through these means. These are amazing experiences that sometimes even money can’t buy.
- You may not be able to work as many hours as you would like, and the pay may not be very good.
- While this is great for personal growth, it might be as relevant on paper for career growth as the subsequent options. Of course, this is dependent on what industry you like to go into in the future as well.
- It is also less sustainable since they are mainly temporary jobs.
Now that we have covered the original Work and Travel definition, the next three categories fall more into the realm of digital nomads.
Working a Remote Job for a Company
This is the option that has boomed in recent years since the covid pandemic made remote work a necessity and possibility. There are more and more remote jobs on the market, and this is only expected to grow.
This has allowed an increasing number of people to work and travel at the same time. Working a remote position for a company is a great option for those who want to work and travel, but still have a steady income.
This is a more career-oriented option as you can stay on and build a career or experience in the industry.
Here is a list of common remote jobs among digital nomads.
- This might vary from country to country. However, the key advantage in working for a company as a contractual employee is that they are likely covering some of your health insurance, or contribution to 401k, CPF, etc (whatever system it is in your country). So there is less obligation on you to plan out these items.
- You might have to work specific timezone which could like to places you travel to. For example, if you have to work US timezone, then Asia is a tricky place to be in due to timezone differences.
- Sometimes you might not be allowed to work overseas. We won’t dive too deep into this as it is dependent on country laws and company regulations. Some companies face tax complications if their employee is not working from within the country. You should always double-check with your company if their remote work policy allows you to work from outside the country.
Freelancing is a great option for work and travel as it gives you a lot of flexibility in terms of work hours and location. You can work from anywhere in the world, as long as you have a good internet connection.
There are many ways to freelance, It can be through social media, online platforms, or even offline if you’re providing a service like photography or tour guiding.
While you might have to work with some clients based on their timezone, you always have the option to choose which clients you want to take on. This means you have high autonomy over your life.
Ideally, you shouldn’t be relying on just one client as your main source of income. If you want to explore this as an avenue to work and travel, here is a guide to freelancing for beginners.
The main advantage of freelancing is that you are your own boss. You can work whenever and wherever you want, and you have a lot of control over your work-life balance.
- Income can be unstable as clients can come and go. You might have to work more hours to make ends meet.
- Your insurance and retirement accounts are not covered, you have to take that into consideration and plan for it yourself.
- You might also need to put in more effort to find work, especially at the beginning.
For detailed guide on freelancing on Fiverr, this course by Alexandra Fasulo is comprehensive and affordable.
Building Your Own Business
This is a great option for those who want to work and travel without the commitment of working for a company, and want to build increasing stability of income.
You have the freedom to work whenever and wherever you want, and you can structure your business in a way that is sustainable for long-term travel.
Building your own business does not have to mean creating a huge conglomerate company. With the internet, there are lots of options to build a stable, sustainable business that churns out good profits. This can be through blogging, an eCommerce store, a service business, etc. There are more options today than ever before.
This is not for everyone as it requires a lot of work upfront to get the business off the ground. However, it is great for those who are willing to put in the work.
The main advantage of building your own business is that you are your own boss and you have complete control over your work and travel schedule.
- It can be a lot of work to get the business off the ground, and you might not have a steady income at first.
- You also have to be very disciplined, as it can be easy to work all the time when you’re your own boss. It is an irony that while you are escaping the rat race, you actually end up working more. The main difference is just that you love what you are doing.
- There is also a lot of responsibility that comes with owning your own business. This is particularly so if you are not a solopreneur and have a team to think about or feed. As a leader, you sometimes have to take responsibility for the actions of others.
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The Growth of Work and Travel
In recent years, there has been significant growth in the number of people wanting to work and travel at the same time. And it’s no wonder why!
With advances in technology, an increase in opportunities to work remotely, and a rise in global awareness, more and more people are seeing the appeal of combining work with travel.
If you are working overseas, make sure to protect the safety and security of your data with VPN during your travels.
The above 4 categories are the main paths you can choose to make work and travel happen for you. Figure out which one works best for you and dive deeper with the rest our resources to see how to make it happen!