Over the past 27 years, I have been working in 31 different countries around the world, of the 72 countries i have visited so far. While I also love to travel through a country purely as a visitor, Working in a foreign country gives you a whole different insight to a place and it really helps you in your job hunt, wherever you are looking for a job at home or abroad. Working around the world rocks.
I have been working as a hotel receptionist in London, a tour guide in Syria, a grape picker in Canada and have organized shopping trip for tourists to Paraguay. worked in a hardware store in Germany, on a desert farm in Israel, in a hostel in Athens and been paid to teach brazilian students danish. I have also been volunteering at a festival in Finland, at the beach handball world cup in Brazil and helped an old guy to restore a water mill in Albania.
And I have done many other jobs around the world over the past 27 years. I have been working my way around the world for the past 27 years and because of the experience I have earned from this, I can actually make a living from my knowledge today and I am not short of work.
If you grab globalization by the balls, then you can benefit from it.
I have decided not to sit down and moan about the world of today and tell everyone that things were much better in the good old days (who were not that good if you take a close look). I am flexible with my job hunt and will take a job anywhere on the planet, as long as I find it to be an interesting challenge. When I work, it’s more the experience than the money that drives me. Sure, I have to be able to pay my bills, but I rate adventure higher than material goods and I do not have a house and a car for instance, cause I am quite happy living out of a backpack.
Most of my jobs are tourism related.
If you want to work around the globe and do not have a specialized degree ( I have no formal education myself), tourism is the best field to look in. If you, like me, have a great interest in different cultures and is able to remember what you learn about then and have some diplomatic sense, then you have a good chance to work as a tour leader around the world for tourist groups, or as a hotel receptionist around the globe. A little more on what it takes to be a tour leader HERE.
I was a vagabond when I was young.
In my younger years, before I decided to make tourism my main way of earning money, I did several odd jobs around the world. These jobs were a little harder to come by, as there is more competition, but I always found something in the end and was never living on my parents money when I was roaming the globe. I was washing dishes, picking fruit, collecting shopping carts in supermarkets and sometimes sleeping in the park when I had no job, but I was young and wild and I never felt more alive than when I was vagabonding around Europe and the Middle East as a 19 year old boy.
Now I’m a vagabond with two credit cards, who reads the Economist.
I’m still a vagabond these days. I have just used the experience I have to get some fairly well paid tour leading jobs that allows me to work roughly 150 days a year and travel around the world for fun, the rest of the year. This is partly thanks to what I have learned over the years and partly thanks to the digital revolution we have had over the past two decades, so now I can organize my work from my laptop while I am on the road, instead of having to meet every potential employer in person like in the old days. The internet is in my opinion, the single best thing that has ever happened to people who want to live a nomadic lifestyle, while working around the world, so you better embrace that if you want to thrive as a nomad. I have no need to live high life with lot’s of money, but by embracing modern technology and staying in touch with the whole world daily, I can quite easily make a comfortable living as a nomad with no steady job or no permanent 9 to 5 job.
Some advice if you want to live a global vagabond.
I get a lot of mails from young energetic people who wants to make a living from traveling the globe and I love these mails and always try to help and encourage people to get out there and travel the globe and meet the people who inhabit it. But you guys have to understand that there is no such thing as a free lunch. It takes a lot of hard work and dedication to do this. You have to really want it and be ready to take the hardships, when you run out of money and sleep in a park for 3 days without anything to eat and when you are told by company number 27 of the week that they have no vacancies. And unless you are really good with tech, social media and is a bit famous already, then forget about the illusion that you can finance your backpacking trips by writing a blog about it. Some people do that and it’s possible, but if this is what you want to try, then you need to be very professional about it. Less than 5% of all travel bloggers make money from their blog. I am one who do not make money from my blog for instance, even if I have a few thousand people reading my blog every month. I could probably make a bit from it directly, but I prefer to use my blog to help fellow travelers and to use it to promote my services as a tour leader and a public speaker.
I will work my way around the world for as long as I live.
One of the greatest things about working around the world is to see that it’s perfectly possible to work with people from different cultural backgrounds, as long as we all are respectful and flexible towards each other. It’s all the international friendships that I have made over the years that really makes me tick and keeps me going, even if I’m a middle aged 46 year old guy these days. I’m writing these lines on an island in the Atlantic ocean, while I am looking in to a bicycle trip through Iran. I might be getting old, but I’m not anywhere close to getting grumpy 🙂