Five Jobs for a Life on the Road


Not everyone wants to work in the same office every day, or even in the same city. If you are energized and fulfilled by traveling, meeting new people, and seeing new places, here are a few ways to turn your wanderlust into careers, unforgettable life experiences, and immediate positive change.

#1: Teach English Abroad

Most schools in America require their English teachers to have a degree in education, or even a master’s degree. Maybe that’s something you eventually want to do, but for now, you can still teach English and travel the world.

There are several countries who need people who can teach English to its native citizens, especially in Asia (South Korea, Taiwan, China, Japan) and the Middle East (Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, U.A.E., Qatar). Most of these jobs simply ask that you complete a certification course before shipping out. What’s more, the jobs usually include lodging and meals, so you can save much of your salary. Of course, the experience could vary widely country to country, but you’ll always have this ambitious, comfort-zone-smashing experience to your credit, and on the old resumé.

#2: Join the Travel Industry

Love air travel and like the idea of staying in a different city each night? Consider working as a flight attendant for an airline, or even training to become a pilot. If “routine” is a bad word in your mind, working for an airline guarantees you won’t stay in the same city for long.

Or if your heart belongs to the open seas, why not get a job on a cruise ship? There’s even more variety here: You can work as a hospitality agent, a bartender/server/chef, a casino dealer, an entertainer, or even as part of the crew making the ship run!

#3: Be a Tour Guide

This job is perfect for anyone who loves a certain place and wants to share their love of it with others. Travel agencies and tourism organizations employ tour guides to make sure tourists the most out of their expeditions. You could be the person to facilitate that.

Many of these jobs will require you to be bilingual, but not all. And it’s a job you can do pretty much anywhere in the world. Love cycling and Europe? Consider leading bike tours through the French countryside. In love with hiking and climbing? Lead groups in the Andes Mountains. Big fan of wildlife and large, scary-looking cats? Take people on safari in Mozambique! Someone’s got to do it. Why not you? Get to Googling and start becoming an expert on a place that fascinates you.

#4: Be a Freelance Anything

By definition, freelance work means you’ve got to piece together a list of clients, which can be tricky when you’re just getting started. But if you are reliable, patient, and persistent, you can absolutely travel the world doing odd jobs for all sorts of clients.

If you have a well-written blog that steadily gains followers, you may be able to attract advertisers and potential clients who will pay you to write about vacation destinations. If you’re a web-designer, you might advertise your services all over the globe, working in a new locale every few months. Photographers, graphic designers, and independent consultants are other people who can regularly jet-set.

#5: Help Others and See the World

If you care deeply about helping people while gaining experiences that will change your life forever, volunteering abroad might be the way to go. This route is a little different in that you won’t usually receive a stipend on top of your basic living expenses—but, luckily, these positions almost always include lodging, meals, travel expenses, and pretty much anything else you might need.

If you join the Peace Corps, for example, you might teach English to a tribe in rural South Africa, or build houses for low-income families in Ukraine. If you have any specialized skills, you might find yourself replanting a forest in South America, providing healthcare resources in Vietnam, or helping a developing island nation ensure clean water.

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