The Essential Digital Nomad with Trevor Carlson shares how you can adventure travel on a budget, helps you get the most out of local experiences, teaches you how to generate remote income, and shows you how to travel to faraway places as ethically as possible.
10 Ways to Make Money as a Digital Nomad
As an aspiring digital nomad, you will likely be thinking of how you are going to fund this lifestyle. How are you going to afford this?
Rest assured, there are many opportunities out there to make this lifestyle work for you.
Keep your current job and take it with you. But what if they say no? Negotiate with your boss to let you take it for a test run. “Give me two weeks or a month to try out this lifestyle. If it doesn’t work, I will go home.” If they still say no you can always find a new job 🙂Sell your skills as a freelancer. As a freelancer you will have a lot more flexibility on your location and when you work. You can do this as a designer, marketer, or hundreds of other positions to fund your lifestyle.Sell on Fiverr. Fiverr allows you to sell any number of unique skills to a global audience. You will start slow but could build yourself a career selling anything from online dating coaching to singing a stranger happy birthday.Sell your photographs to sites as you travel. There are a lot of websites that allow you to sell your photos (https://www.shopify.com/blog/how-to-sell-photos-online) so you just have to pick the one that is right for you.Start a blog on your travels or whatever topic you are excited about. Then sell advertising, use affiliate links, start a patreon, and experiment with a dozen other ways to profit off of a blog.Create and sell videos as you travel. Start by offering to make videos for free (that’s right, free) for restaurants, cafes, and hotels as you travel. Eventually you will have a portfolio you can show to future prospects. You can then trade the work for payment, lodging, or a fine dining experience as you grow your business.Invest your money into a retirement fund through Vanguard. This is a longer term approach but it will help you fund your travels while working.Start a YouTube channel reviewing different travel destinations. As you travel you will go to a lot of unique places in the process. Sharing your experiences will be very helpful for future travelers. This will open up many different monetization opportunities such as ads, sponsors, or patreon.Find paid workaways. A workaday is usually in exchange for lodging and working. There are instances where you can get paid for your work which will cover your expenses while you are bouncing around the globe.Learn to manage social media ads. Social media isn’t going anywhere and learning to manage ads is going to be a great opportunity for you to work a job or work with clients around the world. This is where I got my start so I’m confident you can figure this out too.
These are just 10 ideas for you to fund your travels, there are probably hundreds if not thousands more. Hope this helps you along your journey and let me know if you have any questions.
What is a Digital Nomad?
A digital nomad is someone who:
Travels domestically or internationally while working a job remotely from their chosen device.Someone who uses their remote work to design their lifestyle outside of work. That could mean posting up in Thailand, Prague, or Amsterdam while maintaining their regular income.The jobs these digital nomads tend to work are software engineering, online marketing, data science, design, website development, customer support, or any number of freelance positions. These freelancers find work through websites like Fiverr, Upwork, or their own personal network to grow the number of people they work with while traveling.As a digital nomad, we must subscribe to the scout’s rule of leaving places as good or better than we found them. That might mean supporting locally-owned restaurants and cafes, staying in AirBnbs, homestays, or hostels that are opened by the local community. By being aware of the impact we are leaving we can take conscious actions to make a positive impact on the communities we visit.
If you aren’t a digital nomad yet but desire to be one, the first step is to lock in your income. Taking your current job with you is your best bet. After that take the time to peruse the sites mentioned before Fiverr and Upwork to see what skills you can offer to others online. This will not happen overnight but you will figure out what to do.
What to Pack as a Digital Nomad?
What do you need to pack for long-term travel?
Almost all blogs and experts will tell you that you need to spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on new clothes and technology. YOU DO NOT NEED TO DO THIS!
In fact, you probably own everything you need to get started.
The trick is to not bring too much.
For example, my bag has:
6 t-shirts2 long sleeve shirts2 shorts2 pants7 pairs of socks7 underwear3 shoesAND I probably have too much.
So I usually do laundry once a week to keep things clean.
The main thing to remember is to make sure that all of your clothes match. That will make your life a lot easier when you can grab whatever you need and throw it together.
I stick with blues, blacks, and whites, for the most part, to make sure everything goes together.
WHAT TECH YOU NEED TO BRING WITH YOU
Option 1 - Keep your current plan and get a local sim card wherever you go. This gives you data and service so you can hotspot your phone for good wi-fi. Option 2 - invest in Google Fi. I’ve had it for several years and I would never switch to another cell phone provider. It works in every country I’ve been to and I never have to stress over service. If you’ve never heard of Google’s cell service provider and you are a digital nomad, I would highly encourage you to look into it.Laptop
You will need something reliable that will hold a charge. I highly recommend the Macbook Pro or Air depending on your tech needs. If you already have one then you are good to go. Otherwise, just make sure your laptop battery will last for at least a couple of hours just in case you don’t have access to a charging station.Headphones
You will need solid headphones with a good mic for taking work calls. I use Apple Airpods because I’m in the Apple family but you just need to use what works well for you.Battery Packs
I usually carry 2 rechargeable battery packs with me. If you are an anxious person or use your phone to book tickets or directions, you will want battery packs. They are truly a lifesaver when you need them.Kindle
I love to read real books but I hate carrying them with me around all the time. So I invested in the Kindle. It works perfectly and there are plenty of free books for you to read while traveling.Hotspot
Some travelers like to invest in a hotspot but personally, I’ve never felt the need as I just use my cell phone if I’m desperate.What essentials do you need?
Backup credit cards
International Driver’s License
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If you could ask a time traveler one question, what would you ask? Drew Curtis, founder of Fark.com has been appointed the title of time traveler after his tweet from 2016 recently became viral. Full of wise advice beyond his fortune-telling, Drew shares his input on why failure is necessary, being okay with sucking at something for a while, and living without fear.
Trevor is a great interviewer. He is very conversational and this podcast is informative, fun, and inspirational!
Listen to this podcast!
This podcast is absolutely amazing. It teaches so much about life and gives great travel tips and tricks. Never a dull moment on The Formula!
Insightful, imaginative perspective on life and travel and work
I love this podcast. Always insightful perspectives from a variety of interesting angles. As a fellow world traveler, I enjoy Trevor’s exploration of the globe and fascinating life lessons.