Ever wondered how travel bloggers fund their travels? It looks like most of them live inside Lonely Planet Guides and Nat Geo magazines. Things like that don’t come cheap, so how do they fund their travels and live the dream of globe trotting? We peeked into the lives and blogs of five travel bloggers from around the world to understand how they work and play.
The Shooting Star: Shivya Nath, a travel blogger from India, quit her corporate job at the age of 23, gave up her apartment in 2013 and has been on the road leading a beautiful nomadic life since. But the question lingers, how does she afford to do so? In her words, Shivya says
The life of a travel blogger (or a freelancer) is just as adventurous financially as it is in other, more envy-evoking, ways.
She would take up a lot of writing work for publications from around the world for bread and butter and used the money coming in through these channels to travel extensively. The blog was where she wrote about her sojourns – A personal diary where she documented an honest account.
Slowly, she moved away from working for others and started to collaborate with brands on her blog. Brands that matched her travel philosophy, and one’s that compensated for the time, effort and reach her blog offered. Destination based travel campaigns with tourism boards, brand associations and such are now her primary source of income, and she manages to make anywhere between 2000 USD to 3000 USD a month.
Shivya has managed to fund 80% of her travels in the last 1.5 years through travel blogging – that includes epic adventures in Central America, Europe, Georgia, Jordan, the Caribbean and of course, India! But she stresses on how she never recommends anything to her readers that she hasn’t personally experienced and loved.
Apart from these Shivya advocates that everything comes down to priorities. Spending 200 USD on dinner over the weekend may be a priority for some or buying an expensive designer bag for another. For her, it is about experiencing places and cultures.
Read the entire account here
Nomadic Matt: Matt has been traveling the world since 2006. Growing up, he wasn’t a big traveller and undertook his first international trip at the age of 23, which is essentially where he decided that being on the road is his calling.
Before I went overseas, I saved up $20,000 USD for my time abroad. I spent that money long ago. For the last 2.5 years, I’ve lived off nothing but the money I make online.
Matt offers genuinely valuable information on his blog like how to save money, travel hacks, tips for travellers and hands out itineraries which his readers love.
Taking this as a cue, Matt figured that you can trade valuable information for currency. Eventually, he wrote a New York Times best-selling book, How to Travel the World on $50 a Day. Goes without saying that the book was a huge hit and since then he has a authored a couple of other books. Along with authoring books he advertises about brands on his blog that he vouches for are how he makes money to travel and see the world.
He prides in the fact that 99.9% of his trips have been self-funded, and he barely takes any sponsored press trips.
Read his entire account here
Bruised Passports: A couple of Indian origin Vid and Savi, living in UK recently announced on their blog that they have quit their jobs to travel the world. They are bidding goodbye to every last security net- job, house, gym membership (boo!) – to go and see the world, ALL of it.
They are calling it a staggered retirement plan
We’ve been working hard, earning, and saving for over 10 years now. The time has come to put those savings to good use. For most people, those savings go straight to the mighty pension fund. But who knows where (or how) we will be at 65! So we want to enjoy the fruits of our labour while we still can.
This isn’t to say they won’t be working on the road, they intend to work on Bruised Passports. Vid also has some exciting photography projects up his sleeve (he is a professional travel photographer) and Savi loves to write (is a travel writer with a phd in visual arts )and will continue to work on projects that make her heart sing. But for the folks of Bruised Passport it’s goodbye to structured corporate jobs for now.
Read their entire account here
Goats On The Road: Nick and Dariece, a nomadic couple created the travel blog, after realizing that every day can be an adventure. They’ve found many ways to be free & travel forever and share these tips with the readers regularly encouraging anyone who is looking to live a nomadic life.
In unison they say
Travel blogging is a great career choice and one that has proven quite lucrative for us and many others.
Currently, Nick and Darie have a broad range of income streams, and half of their earnings are not made directly from the Goats On The Road blog, they are all avenues that have branched off of the blogging career over the years – much like a carpenter who works for a building company, but also makes furniture and finishes his friends floorboards on the side.
To break it down, about 50% of their monthly income comes directly from advertising and affiliate sales on the blog. 10% through Social Media marketing work. And a 40% of the monthly income comes from freelance writing work obtained through their blog.
Between the freelance writing and social media marketing work, The creators of Goats On The Road earn on a minimum, a neat sum $2,500 USD / month and work for about 3 to 4 hours a day!
Read the entire account here
Legal Nomads: In 2008, when blogger Jodi Ettenberg quit her job as an attorney to travel the world, she planned to be back at work by 2009. Proving that life is what happens while you’re making other plans. Jodi is still traveling and does not intend to stop. The result has been an amazingly comprehensive blog that should be of particular interest to those with celiac disease. Since she suffers from this condition herself, Ettenberg provides invaluable gluten-free city guides.
Never did I think I would be a writer and public speaker but life has been fun.
Jodi affords her travels by working as Social media consultant and she also performs brand audits for brands who want to focus on authenticity, engagement and a long-term strategy. She has opened shop where you can buy t-shirts and prints featuring hand drawn, one-of-a-kind typographic maps of food. Speaking in conferences about food, brand building and community building, working as a brand ambassador for the travel brand G Adventurers apart from a host of other freelance gigs.
Read her entire account here