I often get asked this question. People tend to assume that to travel I must have a lot of money. True, last year when I travelled around South America I spent around £14,000 – which is not an easy amount of money to save! But, before you assume I am a privileged little rich kid, let me explain step by step how I can afford to travel full time.
Before I left Spain in September 2015, I was working two jobs to save money for my trip. But I admit, most of the funds came from my grandparents who left me a chunk of money when they passed away, which was originally meant for a deposit on a house.
Do I own a house? No. A car? Nope. Designer clothes? Nah. Have a child? Absolutely not! These are all things that other people may spend money on that I don’t. Instead of spending money on a house deposit, I chose to go travelling.
However, (sadly!) money doesn’t grow on trees, and now I have to be much more careful about spending money, and finding ways to earn money while I’m on the road! This time, when I left England again in September I knew I would have to do things differently. I decided to travel more slowly, and figure out how to make this more of a long-term life choice. Last year I thought my trip would be my once in a lifetime journey, so I was spending more as I thought it would be my only chance to experience this adventure. However, after enjoying it so much I couldn’t face going back to an office job, and this year I am choosing to travel full time as long as I can!
How Can I afford to Travel Full Time: Saving Money
One of the big expenses while travelling is accommodation. Many travellers use Couchsurfing for free short term stays, perhaps for a few days in each location and then move on. I have so far only used it to meet local people, not stay with them, but I would like to do it one day! I have also been looking into trustedhousesitters.com for house-sitting opportunities but they haven’t been in the areas that I have wanted to go.
This year I am using Workaway to find voluntary work placements, in exchange for food & accommodation. In Peru I worked for a tourism agency writing some posts for their blog, and here in Mexico City I am working part time in a hostel to get a free bed & breakfast. This is saving me roughly half my daily expenses (when I’m not spending money on transportation), and having access to a kitchen in the hostel means I can shop for food at the market & make food at ‘home’.
How Can I afford to Travel Full Time: Earning Money
Earning cash is the hard part! But necessary to continue my love for travel, and hopefully turn my dream of travel writing into a reality. Here’s what I’m up to at the moment:
I signed up to Copify, a blog post writing service , to practice writing for other publications and try to train myself to write to deadlines. It is useful experience, but the payment per word is pretty low, so I don’t expect to earn much money this way.
I am very excited to announce a collaboration with Don’t Forget to Move for their Authentic Cuba e-book. After my time in Cuba I wrote a chapter for their e-book for female solo travel in Cuba, which will earn me commission on every sale. If you are planning a trip to Cuba and want to learn more about avoiding the scams in Cuba, and travel tips and all you need to know about authentic Cuba.
Many bloggers earn good money from affiliate links on their site that allow them to travel full time. Affiliate links mean that if I include a link to Amazon for example, you click through to the page, and then buy something, I get a little bit of commission for referring you to the site. I have the feeling affiliate links have great potential but so far I have earned the grand total of £15.12 since August. So hardly a big money spinner – yet! But if you would like to book any accommodation through Booking or a flight through Skyscanner please click through here as I get commission with them too!
And that is about it for the moment! It’s safe to say I am not rolling in it, but this is the beginning (I hope!). I have got exciting things in the pipeline that I can’t share yet, but I feel like I am making progress, and perhaps one day I will earn enough to follow my dream and be able to travel full time without worrying about having enough money to eat!
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