How To Travel The World.. As A Digital Nomad
A couple of weeks ago I told you all about my personal experiences with traveling the world (i.e. seeing as much of the world as I’ve been able to thus far) WHILE keeping or holding my 9-5 office job.
Not every travel experience requires that you quit your secure cubicle.
However, if leaving that cubicle is something you dream of (don’t we all?) then this post will be of interest to you.
It IS possible to leave your 9-5 for a job on the road, consisting of full-time travel and country hopping.
Let me preface that statement by saying this does not come easy, and it requires a TON of effort, accountability, responsibility, and diligence to get shit done. Because 90% of the time, if you’re traveling constantly like that, than you are likely your own boss.
Which comes with its own set of perks, like location independence, making your own schedule and pocketing your hard-earned cash after #werking your online skills.
But after interviewing and chatting with a ton of influencers for the Season Finale of Unmapped, I got all the insight into how and what goes into life on the road.
Here are some of the tips and tricks I’ve learned from them, about how to be a *great* travel influencer and travel full-time as your work:
Trial and error.
It’s all trial and error. Blogs, businesses, life. But when it comes to starting your business and figuring out HOW to work from the road, it takes a few ups and downs to get in your groove. That’s natural and part of the process.
Related reading: A Review of The Bucketlist Bombshells’ Work + Travel Course
Make mistakes, but learn from them.
Part of the trial and error process is the ERRORS. Mistakes are common, BUT you can side step them if you know what you’re getting yourself into.
For starters, don’t make your goal to become a “travel influencer” – make your goal something that will personally benefit yourself – like financial freedom, or seeing 50 countries – and figure out a way to make your business support that. “Influencers” that dive head first into Instagram Stardom without really knowing the ropes will undoubtedly make mistakes.
Set up a safety net.
Whether that means having a place to come back to, a job to come back to, or another source of revenue. Basically, have a solid Plan B.
Save, save, save.
Money in the bank (savings account) is necessary when you take the plunge. Realistically you should be making money off your side hustle before you leave your steady job, but JIC, it’s also good to have savings accumulated. Knowing you have six months to fall back on helps cushion the adjustment period.
Live frugally (at least to start).
Goes without saying. Traveling on a budget, especially when you’re first diving into the digital nomad life, will work to your advantage; read: NYC rent is not favorable for your new lifestyle.
Work with brands you actually know about, and are genuinely interested in.
It sounds like common sense, but it’s a valuable lesson that not every influencer follows. Basically, don’t reach out to brands just because you want free stuff, and don’t accept free stuff just because it’s “free” (i.e. not costing you anything, even though you’ll still have to produce content in exchange).
My girl Anna from Venture & Eat spills all the tea on what brands are looking for when working with influencers and vice versa. Check out her blogging tips for a more accurate description of what to do and not do.
Know your value.
This goes back to the freebies item above. Accepting free stuff might be okay in the beginning, as you’re working to get your feet wet and navigate this interesting world of influencing, but you also need to own the value of your work.
Do you produce amazing 600+ word blog posts? Highly produced and edited videos capturing the best of the destination? A DropBox stuffed with high-quality imagery?
All of that content is your hard work, don’t give it away for free all the time.
Over-committing to anything in life can hurt us. In this sense, over-promising more than you’re capable of producing or coordinating can leave you exhausted and run down, and could be detrimental to the relationship you’re building with this brand.
Know your means, and stay within them. It’s a win-win for everyone involved.
Produce everything you promised, produce it well and up to your usual standards (if not above) and deliver is on time.
This is easiest when it’s a brand you’re actually familiar with and personally interested or invested in, which goes back to the above point I made about working with brands.
Tell your own stories.
This is the influencer trap that we can easily fall into. We see some other blogger with 100k+ followers sharing beautiful stories about home decor and her favorite beauty products and BAM, now you’re drafting up a similar blog post about what facial creams you like to use.
The thing is, that works for HER, but does it work for you? If you’re niche is adventure enthusiasts and budget travel, your audience is not going to be interested (and will be VERY confused) when they get that luxe beauty product round-up from you.
The moral of the story is, stick to what you know. Stick to what makes you YOU. Don’t try to be another blogger and don’t tell stories that aren’t authentic to yourself.
Be yourself, because everyone else is taken.