Full-time or seasonal RV life is wonderful – no schedules to keep, no one to tell you which direction to go. But if you’re not wealthy and you aren’t ready to retire, you may wonder how you’re going to make the money you need to keep your RV lifestyle going. Fortunately, in today’s interconnected world, it’s easier than ever to make money on the road.
If your RV lifestyle takes you to specific regions because you’re following the weather or a particular sport (think skiing or whitewater rafting), consider finding seasonal work in areas where you’ll be camping for an extended length of time.
Many RV parks look for seasonal workers during peak seasons to help out their regular staff. The same goes for outdoor adventure companies and even restaurants. If you’d like to find seasonal work at an RV park or campground, check out the RV Park Store for current job listings. You can also talk to outfitters and guide companies to see if they need additional help during the weeks you’ll be available. If you return every year, they’ll appreciate having someone dependable for their busy season.
If you enjoy writing, RV living offers a world of opportunities. To start out, contact all of the blogs you currently follow and ask to write a guest post. Many will turn you down, a few will offer you as little as $25 to write a guest post, but the more you do this, the more you’ll be paid as word gets around about the quality of your work and you develop name recognition. The key to a good pitch is to have a few topics/titles in mind that are unique and well-suited for the blog you’re approaching. Be specific and explain what you can offer that others can’t (knowledge of the Pacific Coast Highway’s best eateries, emergency RV repair know-how, etc.).
If you’re willing to branch out with your writing, there is a world of freelance writing opportunities online. You don’t have to earn a degree in child psychology to write about easy summer craft projects for kids; you just have to have the experience and the ability to explain things clearly. If you have SEO experience, you can find hundreds of opportunities to write on topics ranging from home décor to homeopathic medicine. Websites that offer freelance opportunities include Guru and UpWork.
Online Customer Service and Support
If you don’t want to write there are plenty of other online opportunities that can be done from the road. Call centers need someone to answer calls or respond to emails. If you can type fast and are a good listener, you can make as much as $30 an hour as a transcriptionist. If you have a medical or legal background, you can make even more.
If you can keep regular business hours for an employer, consider being a virtual assistant. Duties include sending emails, typing reports, doing online research and answering phone calls for busy executives. As long as you have a phone and a reliable internet connection, you can be someone’s assistant. Check out Zirtual and Remote.Co for remote opportunities.
All full-time and seasonal RVers run into problems at some point and need help. If you’re a computer aficionado or are great at RV HVAC repairs, get the word out whenever you stop somewhere. There will be others who need your knowledge. Guaranteed. And don’t forget to mention what you can do on your Facebook page, blog (if you have one) and post a notice on RV websites with your contact information. Solving problems for others can be lucrative on the road.
If you already blog about your travels, you’re halfway to making money on the road. If you’ve thought about it, now’s the time to start. Although it can take some time to build a following, once you do you can pitch yourself to companies as a way for them to market to their target audience. The key is to have interesting content and photos that will generate a following. Once you’ve established that, email or call companies offering products or services for RVers and ask for a sponsorship or the opportunity to be mentioned/linked in one or more posts on your blog. Just a few regular sponsors can generate serious income which will increase as your fan base grows.
Turn Your Crafts Into Cash
The emergence of sites like Etsy means almost anyone can turn their favorite craft into cash, particularly if you offer a high-end, unique product. Whether you do embroidery, make wreaths or create beautiful calligraphy, you’ll find a market for it on Etsy. Do some research up front to find out whether your craft sells quickly and keep in mind our space limitations when RVing. Tiny clay animals? Yes. Custom-carved fireplace mantles? No.
If you love taking photos of the places you visit and have a good eye for majestic sunsets, interesting lighting or well-known scenic views, you can either sell your photography online or sell your best images to stock photo websites.
Do you sing? Play the guitar? Act? If you’ve performed in small venues on the weekends over the years, why not take your act on the road? There are plenty of RV parks, wineries, parks and more looking for inexpensive but dependable entertainers for their guests. You will have to plan ahead to go this route, but you can also make good money on tips at some venues and you’ll meet a lot of wonderful people who appreciate your talent.
If you make balloon animals and love to work with kids, market yourself to other RVers at campgrounds as a children’s party entertainer. Families traveling with children often miss out on throwing birthday parties for their kids because they simply don’t know where to find good talent. A few parties each week can net you a decent income while meeting families from around the country.
This is any kind of temporary work done at an RV park or campground. You may not earn a lot of money, but many parks and campgrounds offer you a free campsite and hookups in exchange for some work. You can also get paid in services such as free Wi-Fi, etc. Most jobs last from one to six months, so workamping is best for people who don’t mind staying in one location for a while. Check out Workamping Jobs or Become a Camp Host for more information and listings in areas you’ll be camping.
As you continue traveling in your RV, you may discover your own niche market for a service or product you can provide. Don’t be afraid to test it out and get feedback from other full-time and seasonal RVers. They will have their own stories about how they make money on the road and may suggest a service you can provide that you’ve never thought about (putting together healthy meal kits for RV cooking, for instance).
Keep your mind and your door open to the possibilities and you’ll soon be supporting your RV lifestyle while cruising across country!