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5 Side Hustles for Traveling Nomads

For those of us that spend our lives traveling the world as digital nomads or freelancers, we get used to not always having a steady source of income. Unless you are a remote worker for a company back home, chances are you are self-employed and the quality of life and experiences you can have on your travels is dependent on what you can afford. And of course, you want to experience as much as you can!

Side hustles are a great way to help supplement your travel leisure budget, here are some ways that you can make additional income while having your travel adventures

Travel Writer

If you have a way with words and think you can portray a new place to someone in all of its glory and beauty in just a couple of sentences, you can consider taking up some assignments as a travel writer.

A travel writer is searching for freelancing opportunities to write for someone else. You may be tasked with describing the activities of a city or compiling a list of the best cruises to go on this summer.

Topics are usually in-depth and target a wide range of people that are searching the internet for travel inspiration. Unlike travel bloggers, travel writers are not writing for their own platform but other websites.

Apart from individual news and media sites, you can also find writing assignments from prominent travel sites like Matador Network. Some websites even provide press trip opportunities with the writing assignment.

Travel Blogger/YouTuber

Unlike a travel writer, a travel blogger or YouTuber will be creating content for themselves, and their income is based on how many clicks/views they receive or how many times visitors use the affiliate links on their blogs or videos. There are also other revenue models like brand sponsorships and partnerships etc. You are essentially looking to build a community and audience.

This source of income is very reliant on building visitor traffic, which can be difficult if you are a new travel blogger or vlogger. It is also important to niche down so you can build a concentrated and engaged audience.

This is one of the hardest ways to earn income when you’re looking for a side hustle. However, if executed well to get more exposure to your channel or website, you can certainly be successful.

This takes time to build but has huge growth potential. It can pay off enormously in the long run in building a personal brand.

Selling Stock Photos

We have all seen the classic palm tree dipping over the horizon on the beach photo. Or the couple strolling down old European streets. Or the countless other stock photos that grace every part of the tourism sector.

Of course, someone had to take those photos, and that person was able to monetize their work. When you are selling travel stock photos, you can either find a buyer before or you can find one once you have captured and edited everything.

Either way, this is a great gig to get into if you can gather enough clients based on your reputation that want to send you around the world as a freelancer to collect these more generic, but stunning, photos. Common places to sell stocks photos are Shutterstock, Depositephotos, iStockphotos etc. You can sell them on more than one platform.

However, to excel in this industry, you do want to know how to read trends and go for images that might be trendy at any point in time. (E.g. during Covid, there is an increase in demand for photos with people wearing masks or portraying empty streets/airports)

Travel Photographer

In addition to selling travel stock photos, you could also become a travel photographer. This is someone who is hired on a contract to shoot photos and events for hotels, travel boards, elopements, and everything in between.

You will have a contract before you begin shooting photos and you will most likely have some direction and instruction to follow from the client that hired you. While this may not be as creative an outlet as selling stock photos, you will most likely be traveling for free since your client will be taking care of those expenses.

You get to see more of the world and you don’t have to dip into your savings to do so! There are certain markets in this field that can be very lucrative. If you start to gain a great reputation as a travel photographer, you could have a very busy and successful side gig.

Travel Planner

Becoming a travel planner is a great option for those that have loved their past travel experiences and have the passion to help others plan their dream vacations.

If you feel like you are the best planner and can accommodate the cheapest post-graduate hostel travelers to the most luxurious, retirees finally experiencing freedom, you have a large market waiting for you.

While people that plan their trips can piece together what to do based on internet searches and such, you provide insights on what you’ve done firsthand. You can let your clients know what is worth it and what isn’t and give them the tips and tricks that probably won’t be able to get from reading a blog.

You do have to be a real people person to have success in this type of business, and you have to be flexible when people want revisions or don’t want to consider what you might have done on your travels.

But this is a great way to make side money if you have the passion to sit down and do the work.

They can be complementary to each other

As you can probably guess, many of these side hustles can be easily combined and are complementary to each other. Combining them can help you to earn more money for your travels while doing similar work.

For example, if you are a travel blogger and your audience likes your writing style, you can sell create a portfolio and write for other blogs within your niche.

Most travel bloggers don’t earn enough from just their blog in the early years, and they supplement their income with freelance writing.

If you are a travel photographer, you can be doing private shooting sessions, but also selling other photos of yours as stock images. Many travel bloggers also use their blogs to showcase their photography skills.

Some combine sponsored travel writing with photography, creating lucrative and convenient service packages for tourism boards, hotels, etc. However, when working in physical locations, make sure you follow the country’s labor protocols for foreigners. You can also

There are tons of combinations and ways to increase your income as you travel and make it so you never have to settle down in one spot, you just have to figure out what you’re passionate about and get going on it!

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