Help. I'm Broke!
Something that we often hear from strangers we meet on the road is “I’d love to travel like you but I’m broke.” The truth is WE ARE BROKE TOO!
We want people to know that they can travel & make money (even just make ends meet)! This lifestyle isn’t cookie cutter. There are so many different rigs 🚐 as well as so many different ways of making money💰.
The common ways of making money on the road are:
🎿 Seasonal work
💻 9-5 Job
👩🏻💻 Freelance work
📲Apps or Facebook groups
Don’t let fear hold you back or let a financial situation keep you from adventuring!💛
Let’s talk about SEASONAL WORK.
We just finished our stay at Brian Head Ski Resort, so what better time than to talk about seasonal work.
This is an excellent lifestyle for us because we can work 30 hours a week and explore on our 3-day weekend.
- Working with people is a nice form of consistent community. (If you like your coworkers of course).
- When you’re off work, you’re not thinking about work. When working part-time in an office you might still be thinking about work when you’re going to bed or on a hike. We find that to be EXHAUSTING.
- We save money on gas by staying in a general location for many months.
- We can hear from locals about the best spots to explore!
- It is a much slower pace of travel. That is a benefit to avoiding burnout. We spend many of our "off days" relaxing.
- If the weather is bad we can decide to adventure another day!
- Financial stability for a short period helps plan out our travels.
- Helps build confidence when you’re job searching.
- You’re not making as many decisions as someone who’s ALWAYS on the move.
- Staying in one place can be boring for some people.
- Can’t run from bad weather.
- You’re always looking for your next job.
- If you rely on your alternator or other ways to charge your tiny home, it can be expensive or difficult to work seasonally... well you just have to plan ahead to make sure you have a good setup. We have 840 Watts of solar + 600 amp hours o lithium batteries. We don't drive much during the week, but that's okay because of our electrical setup.
so how do you get started with seasonal work?
Honestly, this spring we needed money ASAP. So we found a ski resort & reached out. Thankfully Brian Head responded the next day and we drove there a few weeks later! Our summertime gig on the other hand was more stressful. We had time to think about what we wanted. (Yay for overthinking)!
Here’s a few questions you should ask yourself while looking for jobs:
- What state or location would you like to be?
- Part time or full time?
- Indoor or outdoor position?
- What’s nearby? Are there showers, water fills/dumps, parking, groceries, or laundry?
- Employee housing?
- Income tax? Sales tax in the state?
- Adventure job with less flexibility or something a little more boring but more flexibility?
- How many days will you get off consecutively?
- What else is important to you?
What we learned is not to overthink it! You can find a job ANYWHERE you want to be. It just depends on how picky you are in the process.
Where to look and find these jobs?
You know where you want to go, but don't know how to find a job in that state... try researching through:
- Facebook Groups
- Ask your friends and family!
Sarah came across a job she didn’t think she was qualified for… she applied anyway and ended up with a different (still amazing) position at a lodge in Oregon! We also had other opportunities from friends which was so helpful!
What kind of seasonal opportunities are there?
The opportunities are honestly ENDLESS! But to name a few:
- ski resorts (even in the summer). You can be a lifty year around!
- hiking/backpacking guide
- kayak/SUP/water rafting guide, surf instructor
- yoga instructor, Adventure Coach, Excursion Guide
- zip line or rock climbing tours
- cruise ships, yachts, sailing charters, boat rentals, fishing charters…etc.
- Cutting Christmas Trees, Sugar beat farm, or Berry picking
- Temp work through an agency as a receptionist or desk help at a national park, KOA, camp host, park ranger…etc.
- House keeping, dish washer, hostess
The list goes on!!
We’ve been learning that jobs aren’t hard to get… well… unless you’re picky like us so if you really want to be in Europe or Oregon (for example)… you can find a job!! Even if you don’t like them all you never know where those jobs might take you!
Don't overlook the “dreaded” 9-5!
For the last few years the traditional 9-5 work has been bashed on and , although it’s not for everyone, it works for A LOT of people! Remote jobs and in person jobs still allow for nomadic life. Just ask @EngineersWhoVanlife. Our friends not only still work 9-5, but they built their van AND built an amazing community on Instagram.
The truth is a majority of people still work 9-5 while traveling! We are so proud of you guys for not letting financial burdens rule you. Just like all rigs are different, everyone’s job situation looks different. Find what gets you to adventure!
Freelance aka "the hustle biz"
Freelance work usually starts as a side hustle for many people...and it is usually a grind! But it can be VERY rewarding! You can make your own hours and pick aa career path that you love.
I am an adventure photographer + videographer (with the help of Codee). I focus on elopements, engagements, solo adventures, outdoor products...and more!
Codee is working on his bookkeeping start-up for small businesses and nomads.
Other people have also suggested virtual assistants, digital marketing (no experience needed), writing, dog or house sitting, buying + flipping items on marketplaces, vinyl decals or custom apparel or items…the list goes on.
Find something you're interested in & GO FOR IT!
Download an App & start earning money!
One of the quickest turnarounds that we have done IN THE VAN! Yes, we actually DoorDashed in the van! You can also do Instacart, Rover, TaskRabbit, nanny apps like Care.com, housesitting…etc.
Don't forget about Facebook groups!
The most UNDERRATED resource out there!! If you’re staying in an area for a while, find and join a Facebook group for work in that area!
For photography, I find many clients and weddings from local Facebook groups! Codee uses them for handyman work. If you’ve built your rig yourself, the truth is you can probably fix things too!
Content creation is for those FREAKING awesome people! Many times it feels out of reach to be a “content creator” or maybe it just isn’t for you. AND THATS OKAY! But if this is something you strive for our friends @engineerswhovanlife, @kryswanders, @meghanandmatt, and @thewanderingwings (just to name a few) are hardworking, consistent in connecting with their community, and just fun amazing humans!
It’s not out of reach but it does take time and persistence. Just ask our friends!