When we tell people we live on the road, one of the most common responses is, “How do you afford it?” Of course, we tell them we live as cheap as possible & our expenses for the year would be equal to most people’s expenses for just a month (*see our actual budget)! The budget is the most important part, and the expenses side is the most important part of that budget! Learning how to save money while living on the road is truly the first step for everyone, whether you’re traveling in an RV, SUV camping or car camping, full-time or part-time, but trying to live on a budget. This means you won’t need to make as much money to get by on the road and it makes things a bit easier. However, we all do need some money to get by. So, how can we do this without traditional full-time employment and with all the traveling we’re going to want to squeeze in while living on the road?
Aside from savings, what else can you do to actually boost the revenue side of the equation? No recipe is going to work for each person, of course. We all have different backgrounds to play off of and we’ll need different amounts of money in order to get by. Having said that, there are some really important things in general to consider that will help you prepare financially for life on the road.
So, here are some ideas to consider if you’re planning on road life soon and need to know how you can make money while living on the road. This list includes a wide range of options – everything from making a few dollars here and there to more long-term considerations bringing in larger sums of dough. Okay, so first, we’ll start with some quick cash ideas When you’ve paid down all the debt and/or have some solid savings, and don’t want to work at a job, there are still ways to make a few bucks. Consider these:
How to Make Quick Cash on the Road
- Collect Cans (10c in Oregon! See a list of all Bottle Redemption locations & rules)
- Find Frisbee Golf Discs for a $5 Redemption Reward
- Walk Dogs (such as WAG)
- House Sitting, House Cleaning Gigs
Here’s a great resource to search for jobs that you can either House Sit or Dog Sit at Trusted Housesitter
- Re-purpose & Resale (Find free or cheap items on Craiglist & Facebook Yardsales)
Now, for the more long-term & larger pay options. First, there are some serious items to take into consideration. Then, we’ll get to this list.
Consider Your Background & Make it “Road Friendly”
Can you use existing background and convert it to something you can do on the road to make money? For example, perhaps you’re a photographer. You can do this on the road! Traveling might actually help you do better at this profession and allow you to focus on the components you really love about it. Consider, Ben Willmore the traveling photographer & photo teacher. Perhaps you’re a nurse – traveling nurse, anyone? And there’s a whole list of other jobs that work well for converting to a traveling, on the road life.
Don’t Forget About the Internet
Online work is a huge area that people living on the road can tap into. Going back to the last consideration, regarding your existing background, you may also want to consider how the internet can help you mold your work into jobs that work well for people living on the road. For instance, consider that photographer. Perhaps he could sell his artwork and photographs on a website. He could use a website and social media to promote himself with practically free marketing in some cases.
Preparing for On the Road Work
If you’re not living on the road just yet, but wondering what you can do to prepare financially, consider the skills you can quickly acquire. There are certain certificate programs available at universities & colleges that can gain you useful skills in a timely manner. Plus, maybe now you can really pursue your true passions! That’s what this life change is all about, anyway; Isn’t it?
Certificate Programs & Associates Degrees
There are many Certificate programs at schools where you can pick up a new trade or gain the credentials you need to communicate you’re ability to provide a given service. Most of these certificate programs are quite short and sweet, so you’ll gain a lot of new talents in a short amount of time – perfect! Also, most of these programs are really more about providing you with targeted knowledge and skills rather than simply getting a title. For instance, you can learn programming, web design, photography, GIS, technical writing, and more. Just look at this list of certificate programs available from the University of South Florida. Some jobs can also be obtained with simply an Associate’s degree. Again, this is a faster alternative to gaining skills you can use while living on the road without delaying your dream for many years. Check out these Associate’s degrees that offer some pretty nice salaries. Of course, we’re talking about jobs for on the road. For that, nursing, web developer, and accounting jobs stand out.
- Online Jobs
- Seasonal Jobs (Lowes, Home Depot, Ski Resorts, Golf Resorts, work at Campgrounds or parks)
- Creative / Artistic Jobs (Cafe Management)
- Rent Your Truck for Moving
- Traveling Sales
- Web content writer
Here’s a list of more:
Where to look for jobs while living on the road
There are actually organizations specifically seeking people who live on the road. They benefit from people that live in RVs or campers who tend to be more mobile and are seeking seasonal jobs. Here are some examples: