Wouldn’t it be nice to find a way to blend your love of travel with your career (instead of slaving away for 50 weeks to pay for two weeks of vacation)? If you’re at a point in your life where you have the personal freedom to travel, consider these travel-related careers:
1. Travel writing: Looking for a profession that enables you to combine your passion for writing with your desire to explore the world? Consider becoming a travel writer. There are hundreds of travel guide book publishers, travel magazines, online sites and newspapers seeking articles about travel every week.
While it is unlikely that you will be able to support yourself as a full-time travel writer (most writers juggle multiple income streams) there are some very nice perks associated with this profession. In addition to being paid for your writing, you’ll typically be compensated for your lodging, travel and tour expenses – often on a first-class basis -when you travel on assignment.
To learn more about travel writing, consult the following resources:
• Profiles of Travel Writers – Interesting collection of interviews with seasoned professionals in this field.
• The FabJob Guide to Travel Writing – Instantly downloadable publication that provides detailed information on the nuts-and-bolts of becoming a successful travel writer.
• Mediabistro.com – There are a number of training programs available to people wanting to learn how to become travel writers. Although I do not have personal experience with the courses offered through Media Bistro, it is the go-to resource for all information related to the media business. They offer an online travel writing class for aspiring travel writers that looks quite substantive.
2. Teach English Overseas: Thanks to the global economy, the opportunities for teaching English overseas are booming. In most instances, all you need to qualify for a teaching job is a bachelors degree, but candidates with advanced training and either a certificate in ESL or a master’s degree in TESOL, enjoy greater job opportunities and earnings potential.
Most programs require at least a one-year commitment from job applicants. Earnings potential can range from a small living stipend — to $50,000+ depending on your expertise and location. As an added bonus, if you spend a full calendar year abroad, your income might be exempt from US taxes (if you meet the qualifications for the foreign earned income exemption).
To learn more:
• Teaching English as a Foreign Language Course Database
• Transitions Abroad Online Guide to Working Abroad: Comprehensive Links and Advice on teaching and working overseas.
3. Work on a Cruise Ship: Cruise ships offer a variety of opportunities for employment ranging from full-time staff positions to part-time gigs as onboard lecturers, fitness instructors and even dance partners (yes, distinguished older gentleman can receive free cruises in exchange for working as charming partners on the dance floor!).
To learn more, go to the careers page of any of the major cruise lines or consult:
4. Tour Director/Manager: If you’d like a chance to get paid for travel, but you don’t want to commit to a long-term obligation, consider becoming a tour manager. Tour Operators hire Tour Managers to be the guides for tours that have been organized by the Tour Operator. Tour Directors lead their groups on tours and ensure that all aspects of the trip run smoothly.
In addition to having their travel expenses covered, people who lead tours get paid either a salary or project fee. In addition, they earn income from tips and commissions generated from selling optional tour features.
There are a number of short-term training programs available to people wanting to enter this field, many of which are now offered online and through community colleges. Here are two of the better-known programs:
Copyright Nancy Collamer. Nancy is a career coach who specializes in helping people design lifestyle-friendly career options outside the 9-5 corporate box. She can be reached through her website at MyLifestyleCareer.com.