• earn money abroad, make money while you travel, how to make money abroad

14 Ways to Earn Abroad | How to Make Money While You Travel

You can make money while you travel and actually earn money. I recommend starting out with a bit of savings & making sure to stick to your budget, while also seeking out free options for travel, then you can start to travel and make money at the same time. Read more on these first:

Then, once you’ve figured out how to travel on the cheap you can use these tips to start making money so you can enjoy your journey even more.

How to Make Money While You Travel

1. Teach a class

This is one of the best ways to earn money while you travel. What are you good at? Yoga? Painting? Ask hostels if you can teach for a small amount to their guests. In Goa especially there are a lot of girls teaching yoga. Some people here who are good at working out starting teaching fitness classes. A place in Goa called Vaayu hosts “artists in residence”.

2. Do dishes or whatever work a hostel needs

I’ve done this at a hostel in order to stay for free or for a small amount of cash. It’s maybe only a 10 dollar perk, but sometimes exchanges like this work out well for a budget traveler.

River Tern Jungle Lodge Boat Safari

3. Teaching english

It seems like half the other travel bloggers out there got started by teaching english abroad after college. It’s a high paying gig and some bloggers have saved thousands. You don’t have to be a blogger of course, but they are the ones documenting this. Try TESOL or TEFL certification. Many do this in South Korea. I considered it in India and would if there was a need in Goa but there really isn’t. Again, you have to invest a little money into the class. This article claims you can earn 300,000 USD in 5 years and another shows you the top 5 countries to make money teaching English: Korea, China, Japan, Taiwan, Gulf Arab States. This is the best way to start out earning money while traveling if you want to become a travel blogger.

4. Start a new small “business”

From the massage I do, to making candles, or my website, there are many ways to try to become an entrepreneur. Some may make you a lot and some may make you beer money. What sounds fun to you? If you can travel slow (which saves money in the long run), then get crafty. I’ve seen some people make bracelets, draw, paint nails, etc at markets to learn a little cash on the side. Goa is full of foreigners making and selling jewelry. You can even try starting a website and earn from ads or affiliate sales. If you’re thinking “I don’t know how to start a website”, well neither did I before I started this one by googling “how to start a travel blog”.

isla candles goa

5. Learn a new skill

I leaned Thai massage & make a decent amount of money from this. Thai massage is a clothed massage on a yoga mat and I can do it anywhere. Although I was busy with it this season, I am not interested in growing this much and don’t even advertise anymore… but if I wanted to do this just for friends I meet when I travel for a little extra cash I could.

6. Work on a yacht

You can be the help on a yacht. From what I read it’s hard work, but you sure will get to see a lot. Here is an blog of a girl who does just this: Little Mermaid at Sea by a chick called Arielle (really!). You can also apply for jobs on cruise ships. This is an awesome way to get paid to travel and is one of the best travel the world jobs!

little mermaid at sea

7. Pass out fliers

I’ve seen this like crazy in Thailand with kids passing them out for clubs or adventure activities. They’ll be paid for this and also get a free place to stay at the hostel in most instances. Some college kids do this and stay on the islands their whole summer.

8. Working on farms

Using sites like WWOOF help you find farms in exchange for a free place to stay. In Australia, you can apply for a working visa and make minimum wage (which is high there) for working on farms. Check out their official website. There are places in the US you can even cut weed legally for cash!

9. Become a tour guide

I just saw an ad yesterday for a company I love and write about, gomowgli, who is hiring tour guides and promoting it as traveling India for free. You can search out on Google for a position like this. Believe it or not, there are many. Jessica from Curiosity Travels is starting one as a guide in the US with Peak Adventure Travel. Cities that offer free walking tours need people to lead those tours. In big cities in Europe, you can even lead bar crawls and earn from tips on top- I met a girl years ago I introduced to you in this post who leads tours now and loves it. Below were my goMowgli guides!

gomowgli review india

10. Bartending

My friend Megan bartended at a hostel in Medellin and stayed for ages! It can be the perfect gig. I know places in Goa that hire every season and in places like some Thai islands, you don’t always need the proper paperwork (as in they will look the other way).

11. Become an Au Pair

One of my favorite bloggers, Ashley Abroad, started a whole website about Au Pairing so start out with some of her tips and you’ll be living somewhere cool with a family, learning local traditions, and earning a good income.

12. Become a flight attendant

I think it probably sounds more luxurious that it really is, but I know a few girls who do this and they get to stay in cities (on the cost of the airline) in nice hotels for a few days between flights. As you know, I think reading blogs is a great way to get inside scoop, so here’s a blogger that writes about the Flight Attendant Life.

13. Use your degree if you have one

Maybe you can do business abroad, or you can use that hospitality major to work in the Taj Hotel or the Alila in Bali! You might be able to do nursing abroad, PR, and IT. If you’re not in college yet, consider majoring in something that will allow you to travel!

earn money abroad

14. Work online

This can be hard, but many do it. You can take jobs on websites like elance  or fiverr writing someone’s resume, editing papers, doing web design, and so much more. Once girl wrote about doing modeling on one! You can even start your own website as a portfolio for more work. It doesn’t have to be about travel- it can be fashion, or really specific about your love for nail polish designs. You’d be surprised what types of websites are really popular. Are you a vegan traveler, gluten free, traveling with diabetes, traveling with your 90 year old grandma – or whatever that makes your trip different – is something you can write about that SOMEONE out there will relate to. Become an authority on it. Many bloggers use sites like that and redirect them to another site which makes them money. For example a travel blogger may direct to another site which does tours, or an artist may redirect to hiring her digital design.

Another way you can make money (sort of) online to travel for free is through airbnb. Anyone can become an affiliate like I am. Basically,use this airbnb link to book, receive $20 off you first booking, and get your friends to sign up through YOUR link to get $20 each time they do. You get the money in airbnb credit and can get a nice hotel for free!

soliga tribe BR hills gorukana

remember to read these as well: 9 tips for saving money for travel, & how to stay on budget

Combine these tips so you can stay on the road longer!




About the Author:

Rachel Jones left a career in nursing and lived on the beaches of Goa, India for the five years. Now she lives in Mexico where she gives advice on the 40+ countries she’s visited in the last 10 years. She’s the author of two India travel e-books: Guide to India and Insider’s Guide to Goa. Her blog, Hippie in Heels, like its name, is a contradiction combining off-beat adventurous places with glamorous and bespoke travel. Hippie in Heels has been featured in ELLE, Marie Claire, Grazia, and Cosmopolitan magazines. She’s a writer for Bravo TV.


  1. Ford May 27, 2015 at 9:49 pm - Reply

    Good pointers Rachel! I was just talking to some people today about some of these options to facilitate more on the road time (we’re not on vacation!). Sometimes you have to be willing to do something you think is “below your pay grade” to make some extra change here & there.

    • Rachel Jones May 28, 2015 at 11:34 am - Reply

      Yeah I mean selling $5 candles I make in my kitchen isn’t really using my college degree lol

  2. Samantha May 28, 2015 at 4:55 pm - Reply

    Nice article with some fresh and creative ideas, thanks!

  3. Lissa May 29, 2015 at 12:08 am - Reply

    The problem for me trying to travel is that I have kids. Although I have seen some travel bloggers that take their kids everywhere, I think there may be a lot of difficulty in doing that. Kids can’t go to bars and clubs. Some tours aren’t really kid friendly. Some places that could be potentially dangerous are just not for kids so that has made my traveling limited (which is sad). In my family, we all have 5-8 children, not necessarily by choice, just that we are super fertile… Kids happen. I love mine. I wouldn’t have it any other way. It’s neat to see that you’ve made other plans too besides traveling, you make candles? Those are neat, Rachel. How do you order them?

    • Rachel Jones May 29, 2015 at 4:50 pm - Reply

      Yeah I can see what you mean. I am not sure how I would continue traveling when I have kids, or if I will still want to travel AS much (I’ll always want to but maybe not all the time). I read the bloggers too with kids and imagine it’s really hard! I don’t have my candles online, only in shops in Goa.

      • Lissa June 4, 2015 at 1:54 am - Reply

        If you’re on Blogger, you can sell your candles with Shoplocket widget. I’ve been thinking about opening my own online shop online that way. I know my friends sell their homemade items on Etsy. I don’t know if you can do that from India, but it would be great to have some extra spending money while traveling.

    • Heidi September 10, 2015 at 6:15 am - Reply

      Traveling can be done with kids, but it takes a lot more time, a lot more patience and a bit more money. We travel in our RV right now with our kids full time and it works. We have WWOOFed and workamped and I run a small online business. My kids see the world (we homeschool) and meet lots of amazing people.

  4. Justine May 29, 2015 at 8:22 am - Reply

    Such good pointers here Rachel! It’s taken living abroad and starting a travel blog for me to realize just how many ways there are to make money while traveling or living abroad. There are so many creative people out there doing such innovative things. It just goes to show that with a little creativity you can make travel a reality!

    • Rachel Jones May 29, 2015 at 4:48 pm - Reply

      living abroad is a pretty big wake up call, especially when you move to a place SO far from home and filled with people living totally different from what we are used to.

  5. Victoria@ The British Berliner May 29, 2015 at 11:20 am - Reply

    Excellent tips Rachel for all aspiring travellers. It’s far easier if you’re determined. I’ve been a tour guide, a project manager in the Czech Republic and a teacher-trainer/professional coach in Germany. It’s much easier to get better-paid jobs if you have a degree and teaching qualifications. Also, don’t be afraid to just knock on doors anyway. People can only say “No” and you’ll be surprised how many people actually say “Yes” LOL!

  6. Raj May 29, 2015 at 5:07 pm - Reply

    good idea !

  7. phoebe May 30, 2015 at 7:29 am - Reply


    This was such a great post! I love your different take on this concept, as there are so many posts on working abroad, but this one is ‘real’! I hope your trip to Maui was great, I am leaving Goa tomorrow (shame we couldn’t meet up!)

  8. Laura + Will @ Bottled Air May 31, 2015 at 3:16 am - Reply

    Good tips! We’ve done a few of them so far. Teaching English is definitely a good one – and it’s crazy how easy it is to find a ob, at least in Asia! And getting a degree is probably a good idea, especially because so many countries require you to have one if you want to work legally – that’s why I decided to do a distance learning program, so now I’m travelling and studying at the same time :)

  9. Ciara June 5, 2015 at 12:55 am - Reply

    This might be my favorite post on the Internet. I am not sure all these options work for me since I just got married, but if I had found it earlier I might have been somewhere else instead of meeting my husband :) And with regard to kids, my parents moved us to a foreign country (which many people consider dangerous) when I was 2. It’s definitely not the same as 8; I just like encouraging people to think of traveling with kids as a possibility, especially since I think it benefitted me.

    • Rachel Jones June 5, 2015 at 3:34 pm - Reply

      i’m so glad this post resonated with you. I’m sure you’re right where you’re meant to be now :D I hope that when (if) I have kids I take them traveling everywhere. I bet you had a cool childhood.

  10. Lalit Gautam August 4, 2015 at 11:28 pm - Reply

    Hi Rachel, Wonderful blog, i followed you on twitter and i am founder of two start up and dual degree graduate from Jaipur Rajasthan India, love this blog too, but looking forward for blog with same topic for Europe and US, how to survive in that places during travelling?? and looking forward to meed you in goa or if you have any plan in jaipur, i am digital nomad.

    Nice to read your blogs.

  11. Vishnu May 3, 2017 at 11:03 pm - Reply

    The Best guide with best explanation about earnings. Thank you

  12. dkfloza February 23, 2018 at 3:40 pm - Reply

    How about the visa? most of the blogs regarding this topic only consider those who has no concern what so ever about Visa LOL. What about people like me who are from Iran and they need visa to travel to most of the countries ?

    • Rachel Jones February 24, 2018 at 4:15 am - Reply

      I live in India and need a visa to live here, so I apply for it. You will get further by searching where you can go on your passport than complaining on my blog (insert snarky LOL here)

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