I travel non stop and have not had a permanent home for several years. I live most of the year in hotels and visit more than 20 countries every year. This is how I finance it.
I work as a tour leader.
Right now, the majority of my income comes from taking tour groups around the world. I mostly work with specialized groups that are fairly high end and require a lot of personal service and I do this because it pays better as it requires you to know what you are doing when a client has paid 2-3000€ for a holiday.
This is not a job you just walk in to, but the main requirement in order to get this job is to have a lot of travel experience and travel knowledge, so it’s a job that really appeals to people who love vagabonding. You might have to start working as a rep before getting these jobs, but if you seriously want to travel the world for your whole life like I do, then working as a rep for one or two seasons is not too bad, if you can move on to the better paid tour leader jobs after that and as a rep you still make enough money to have a good life while traveling the world. Just for information, I usually make around 150-200€ per day when I work as a tour leader and they pay all expenses for me too, which means I can save almost everything up for some “real travel” once I am done working.
I have decided not to work just for one company and have a contract, cause then they will start to dictate when I work and when I holiday and I prefer to be king of my own life even if this means having a less secure job situation.
And I get most of my jobs by networking with travel agencies at travel fairs.
I’m no great believer in sending out cv’s cause then you are quite likely never to be considered, cause the travel agencies get so many cv’s send that they don’t read them all.
It’s better to get out there in person and tell them why YOU should be their tour leader.
Travel fairs are held all over the world in major cities, so try and look up the one closest to you if tour leading is what you want to do.
You might also want to check out my blog post where I talk about the pros and cons of being a tour leader.
I work as a public speaker.
Being a public speaker is something that pays you nothing in some countries and quite a bit in other countries. In my native Denmark it’s quite well paid and getting 4 to 600€ for 2 hours of talking about some subject is quite common. I have a few jobs a year doing that at the moment, but it’s just a side income for me. But this is a field that I will move further in to in the coming months. I have been saying no to a lot of these jobs in recent years cause i have been too busy tour leading, but i think I will start to prioritize these jobs more.
I make money from my travel knowledge.
Once you have traveled for a few years and build up some good contacts you can start earning money from that. This is a bit tricky as many travel agencies think that you will just pass on your knowledge for free if they give you one or two tour leader jobs a year. They will totally pretend that they never heard the word “consulting fee” but this is where you have to stand you ground and tell them to pay if they want your help.