Everyone has at least one dream place they’ve always wanted to go. What’s yours? Maybe it’s a beach in Bora Bora, a big city like Rio de Janeiro, the mountains of Morocco, or just two states over. Of course, the biggest obstacle to getting there is often money. Especially if you’re a college student, recent grad, or young professional, you probably don’t have a bunch of money lying around for travel. Besides the financial aspect, it can also be hard to take time off for traveling when you’re just starting your post-college career; you may feel uncomfortable leaving as a newbie, or you may not have many paid time off days to begin with.
But what if there was a way to work while you travel? In a modern work environment, there are more than a few ways to incorporate your love of travel into your career path after you graduate college. Even better, you don’t have to pigeonhole yourself into just one field to do it! There are many jobs for people who want to travel in numerous fields, from business to communications to tech. Here are just a few.
Becoming a tour guide is a great opportunity to see lots of new places and do lots of traveling while doing so. It’s an awesome job if you want to travel! You also get to help other people nurture their own love of travel. As a tour guide, you might work for individual tourism offices (why not get started in your own hometown?), travel agencies, or large companies that specialize in tours, whether they’re for school groups, individuals, young adults, families, retirees, or anything in between.
The travel industry is massive, and there are countless types of jobs, allowing you to specialize in what you want to do. One drawback: tourist season in many areas may be relegated to only a handful of months, often the summer, so you may have to supplement your travel job with other work during the off season. But if you’re the type of person who wants to do something different everyday, this might be perfect for you! If you want to work towards becoming a tour guide while in college, you could study hospitality, tourism, international relations, or communications. If you want to work abroad, you might pick up classes in a foreign language or in international studies.
Are you really into writing? Do you love getting to know different cultures? And are you the kind of person who can’t wait to tell people about your experiences the second you get home from vacation? Or maybe you can’t even wait until you get home and you fill up your Instagram and Tumblr with travel stories?! Travel writing may be something worth exploring. You can find work for magazines, travel sites, or government or tourism offices representing particular destinations. You might even work for yourself as a travel blogger or a self-employed entrepreneur. A major drawback to travel writing is that it’s usually freelance, which may not lend itself to a steady income. But with enough hustle, you can make it work. And who says you need a regular paycheck from a 9-to-5 job anyway? You do you.
If you don’t want to work directly in the travel industry, you might enjoy taking a job at a company with an international presence. Though you may not be able to travel right away, staying with a company with offices around the world can give you the opportunity to be relocated to another country down the line. With so many businesses becoming global, there are opportunities in countless fields to take your career abroad.
Online jobs and remote work
Another option if you don’t necessarily want to be in the travel industry is to work online. With Internet access across the globe, jobs done entirely online are becoming more and more common. This gives you the option to travel frequently without losing time at work, or you may have the freedom to relocate as you please. Not to surprisingly, some of the most desirable and stable online jobs are in the tech industry, since computer programmers are in high demand and can do the work from virtually anywhere. But you might find remote work opportunities in lots of fields, as many office administration and communication jobs are mostly done from a computer anyway. The PennyHoarder has lots of ideas for making money online, whether you want to jump in full time or start off supplementing your income from home. There are also freelance sites like Upwork that hire for everything from small temporary projects to full-time jobs.
If you want to travel for your work but want something a little more stable, you might consider a career working for the government. Like working for an international company, government jobs might give you the chance to start out closer to home and then be moved somewhere abroad. Governments often hire diplomats, translators, and staff for embassies, among other things. This is a great option if you want to work in a different culture but not move around as constantly as you would for more travel-centered jobs.
According to Psychology Today, only 20% of Americans are bilingual. This means that the vast number of jobs involving teaching languages and interpreting, whether at home or abroad, have a pretty small pool of qualified people. If you are bilingual—or want to be—job opportunities abound! You can go overseas and teach English in everything from elementary schools to specialized language academies. There are also government jobs, as mentioned above, that require interpreters in many parts of the world. And a plethora of companies, many travel and tourism related but not all, also want their employees to be bilingual. So whether you want to work specifically with travelers or not, this job may be for you.
One of the more obvious jobs for people who love traveling is to be a flight attendant. If you’re good with people and customer service, don’t mind untraditional schedules, and can handle being on your feet, this may be a good job for you. This may not be the most glamorous of jobs, but you’ll get to see lots of different places in a small amount of time, giving you the opportunity to explore places you might never have seen otherwise. According to the Occupational Outlook Handbook, airlines usually require a high school diploma, and some prefer a college degree too.
Just because you have a degree now and are expected to get a job, doesn’t mean you have to give up on your desires to travel. There are many jobs that allow you to travel for work, and many others that are flexible enough that you can work and travel on your own schedule. Sometimes a little digging around the internet is all it takes to find something perfectly fit for you and the life you want to lead. Good luck in your job search!
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