Jobs That Allow You to Work on the Road

jobs you can work while traveling

Long term travel is a rewarding experience, but can be stressful if you have to think about how you’ll support yourself and pay for your travels. Most of us will quit our jobs before going traveling for six months to a year. We’ll save up for as long as possible. But what if you could work while you travel?

There are a number of options for travelers who want to have a job on the road, namely through work visa programs. The working holiday program in Australia and New Zealand are two of the most popular as are the English teaching visas. But you can also find work in other ways. If you aren’t taking the visa route, check your country’s requirements before accepting a job or agreeing to cash under the table. You’d hate to end up with that big deportation stamp on your passport!

Keep in mind that each job might require different visas or certifications in different countries. Bring a copy of your resume already printed out to hand out to prospective employers. And most importantly, we are not experts in consular affairs, so be sure to do your own research.

Digital Nomad

jobs that allow you to work on the road
Being a digital nomad allows you to work remotely from almost anywhere in the world

Let us first say that this isn’t a job title but an entire type of job that you can do from anywhere that has an Internet connection. This might be freelance writing, web design, virtual assistant work, social media consulting, or even day trading. You might start a blog that sells affiliate ads.

The hard work comes on the front end in finding this type of career or switching from a traditional office format to working remotely. You might ask your employer if they would be open to working from home a few days a week to prove that you are capable. Remote work can also be found on websites like Upwork and FlexJobs.

The upside is the flexibility that can come with this type of career. The downside is being tied down to places with quality Internet, which can be difficult in certain parts of the world, and having to work while everyone else is enjoying themselves traveling.

Digital Nomad Job Ideas:

  • Graphic Designer
  • Web/App Developer
  • Blogger
  • Virtual Assistant
  • Freelance Writer/Translator/Transcriber
  • Photographer/Videographer
  • Consultant
  • Virtual English/Music/Tech Teacher
  • Life/Health/Business Coach
  • Dropshipping Shop Owner
  • Social Media Manager
  • Remote Work Your Normal Job

Bartender/Server

jobs that allow you to work on the road
Bartending can be an easy job to do in other countries

One of the easiest jobs to find overseas is as a bartender or server. Most countries require you to have a visa for this type of work, like Australia and New Zealand’s working holiday schemes. But it’s not impossible to find this work without one. Ask around a hostel, which might be willing to hire you to cover room and board. Others will pay you cash and let you work short term, but only you can decide if this is worth the risk.

Some establishments will require bartending experience, but most training can be done on the job. For example, in Australia the alcohol laws are strict so glasses have lines on them to show you where to pour. Expect to get paid hourly plus tips when possible.

The upside is the ease of the work and decent money that can be found as well as the discounts or free meals you can get during your shift. The downside is the hours, which usually run late and on weekends. Your free time is when everyone else is at work, which makes it difficult to have a social life.

Nanny/Au Pair

If you’ve ever worked as a babysitter or cared for siblings, being a nanny overseas might be a good job for you. Nearly every part of the world needs nannies and this type of work requires few prerequisites apart from experience with children. Certifications like first aid can also be a plus. Websites like Care.com and Au Pair World as well as agencies make it easy to find work.

Expect to set up a Skype call or interview with a prospective family before you arrive in the country. This will allow you to ask important questions about hours, pay, and living arrangements, if applicable.

The upside is steady and reliable work for a set amount of time. The downside of this job is the hours. If you stay with the family, you’re rarely “off duty.” You’re also staying in someone’s home, so don’t expect to throw parties or bring home dates.

Seasonal Work

jobs that allow you to work on the road
Working in a seasonal job can be a good way to work while traveling

Some countries offer visas for seasonal work like working in resorts or farming. Few prior skills are required but hours can be long. In the United States, young people from overseas get visas to work as camp counselors, while in Canada, visas are extended to employees of ski resorts. You might also be picking fruit or some other harvesting job or working as a river rafting guide. Backdoor Jobs has the best listings of these short term opportunities.

Upsides into these jobs is the limited time frame of work while the downside is the same. You might not have time to travel much while working before your visa expires.

English Teacher

South Korea is a popular country for teaching English as a second language
South Korea is a popular country for teaching English as a second language

One of the best jobs for recent graduates is English teaching overseas. You can do it almost anywhere, but South Korea tends to be a popular spot for its benefits and cost of living. Some places require a specific degree, while others only need you to have a college diploma and a strong grasp of the English language. These jobs are easily found online through websites and recruiters.

Upsides include reasonable pay, flexible schedules, and the possibility of living expenses covered. The downsides are few, but the only one might be the fact that you’re tethered to an area for a set amount of time. However, this is something to consider when choosing where you teach English.

Film Extra

While not regular work, it’s easy to work as a film or television extra. Some pay cash that day while others require you to have a legal work visa. Much of the job is waiting around for many hours until your brief scene, up to 10 hours of sitting for 2 hours of work.

The difficulty of this work is finding it abroad. You might see a flyer or posting online, but the best way is through Facebook. Look up “casting + your city” and follow the agencies in your destination to see what types of extras they’re looking for.

Odd Jobs

What about the work that doesn’t fit into any other category? This might be cleaning your hostel for a free bed and meals or handing out flyers for cash. If you’re especially enterprising, it might be using your skills as a busker. Or if you make your own jewelry or can cut hair, peddle these to your fellow travelers.

Have you found any other jobs that allow you to travel? Leave them in the comments!
jobs you can work while you travel

Written by Caroline

Caroline Eubanks is a native of Atlanta, Georgia, but has also called Charleston, South Carolina and Sydney, Australia home. After college graduation and a series of useless part-time jobs, she went to Australia for a working holiday. In that time, she worked as a bartender, bungee jumped, scuba dived, pet kangaroos, held koalas and drank hundreds of cups of tea. You can find Caroline at Caroline in the City.

Add your voice & leave a comment!

Gear We Use

Organization

Packing Cubes – Organize your luggage with the lightweight, durable and compressible Eagle Creek Pack-It Specter Compression Cubes.


Backpacks + Daypacks

Pacsafe – Since they come with extra theft-resisting features, Pacsafe bags make you a more confident traveler. We especially love this bag.

Sea to Summit – Of all the Sea to Summit products, our most recommended is the fits-in-your-palm, super packable Ultra-Sil Daypack.


Personal Care

Nalgene Toiletry Bottles – These leak-free toiletry bottles and tubs come in all sizes – even super tiny, helping minimalists pack it all without bulk.

Turkish Towels – They’re thinner than most travel towels, and they actually cover your body! We can’t get enough of Turkish towels for travel.


Clothing

Speakeasy Supply Co. – They make the awesome hidden pocket infinity scarves that are perfect for stashing secret cash, lip balms, and passports.

Anatomie – Anatomie travel pants come with luxury prices, but they offer many benefits for travelers. See our review of the famous Skyler pants.

Travel Resources

Booking Airfare

Dollar Flight Club – Get flight deal alerts for your preferred departure airport. There is both a free and premium version (recommended for more sweet deals). Members save on average $500 USD per flight!

Skyscanner – Skyscanner is our preferred site for searching flights. They offer unbiased search results and are free from hidden fees. You can also book your hotels and rental cars.


Accommodation

Airbnb – Airbnb is the best place to book out apartments around the world. Sign up using this link to get $37 USD off your first stay booking + $14 USD towards an experience booking!

Booking.com – Search for hotels, hostels, and apartments using this one resource. Use it for flights, car rentals, and airport taxis as well.

Hostelworld – For hostels, Hostelworld remains our number one source for booking stays. Choose from straight up hostels, budget hotels and bed and breakfasts.

Trusted Housesitters – Save money on travel accommodation by becoming a housesitter. Housesitters often have extra duties, like caring for pets and gardens.

Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. 33 says

    In many countries, teaching English requires certificates and under local outfits. You have to be hired by a legitimate school/academy to get a work visa (Japan, Korea, Taiwan for example). Other than the jobs that are not country specified, I would check with the country’s law when it comes to local jobs and work visa status. You don’t want to violate any immigration law to be deported or barred from re-entry.

    I have an ex who’s a nomad in his whole 20s. He was teaching English in Asian countries and traveled all over the region. When he turned 30, he said he could not see himself teaching English in a Japanese country town forever. He came back, got a master’s degree, and found long term employment. It’s been 15 years. Now he can only travel about 4 weeks a year until he can retire from full time working. He wants to roam but he’s also practical about finance and retirement. It’s a good thing that he’s single, no children, and no debt of any kind. It makes retiring from working full time easier. My coworkers who had to work till mid to late 60’s all have children going to college or grad school.

  2. Cindy Edwards says

    Where can I find a job while traveling with my husband who does underground construction all over? We can be in a place couple of days or weeks depending on the job. I want to work at places where there are people sick of being stuck in hotels alone all day.. I want to be around people not on a computer alone. Is there any job that exist for a person like me??? Traveling bored wife wants to be around people and work.

Leave A Reply