How to make money while cycle touring

How are we going to make money while cycle touring? The question I’ve been asking myself constantly in the lead up to our cycle tour. It’s also the question that friend’s and family have been asking me. We all know cycle touring is a cheap way of travelling, however it’s still not free, and to cycle tour long term, like we plan on doing, it’s important to have some income coming in, even if it’s only pocket money.

make money cycle touring

So, I’ve started putting together a list of possible ways to make money while cycle touring.

  • Freelance writing

I’ve had some success getting paid to write short city and country description or and other travel articles, and to be honest, I haven’t put much time and effort into it… yet! This is something I definitely hope to build on while cycling, though it seems the competition is quite fierce.

Update: I’ve recently had a lot of success freelance writing, my biggest concern is finding a good, regular net connection and also finding the time to write the articles.

This is something we definitely plan on doing. To be able to appreciate travel, it’s important to take a break once in a while. A new website I’ve just discovered is Search Jobs Abroad. They post all types of jobs around the world including  short-term holiday work, volunteer positions, part-time and full-time jobs. Definitely worth checking out if you’re thinking of breaking up your cycle tour.

We’ve already decided that we will stop for 6+ months at a time during the cycle trip, to relax, fix any bicycle gear, fix ourselves up, and to work and live semi-normal lives for a bit. New Zealand, Australia, Europe, and Canada, are good places to work and save cash, especially if you’re able to get a work and holiday visa. Otherwise, TEFL teaching in Asia and South America could be a good options.

  • Online paid gigs

Such as Fiverr (I’ve actually make over $2000 USD in the past year on Fiverr). There are many alternatives, but I’ve only really used Fiverr, so far. Other alternatives include, gigbucks Freelancer, oDesk, Upwork, eLance, Guru, People Per Hour, 99 Designs, Design Crowd, Project 4 Hire. The pay isn’t great, but it is a start! I’ve also managed to secure some long term clients through Fiverr, and lead them away from the actual platforms, so to avoid paying the insanely high fee.

  • Stock photos

Not something I’ve really had much experience in. I recently discovered, stockimo, which is an iphone app that allows you to upload and sell iphone photos. Yes, you’ve read correctly, iphone photos. I’ve just signed up and uploaded a few photos, so we will see how it goes. Other sites, for DSLR and SLR photographers, include dreamtime, shuttlestock and istockphotos.

  • Hostel reviews

I’ve been writing paid hostel reviews for quite a few years now, and though it doesn’t usually cover the full cost of a nights sleep (unless you’re travelling in Central America or South East Asia), it still definitely helps. Hostel sites usually pay between $5 – $20 USD per 400 words review, with photos.

Loads of people do it, and seem to make some money off it. I haven’t quite mastered this skill yet, but there will be plenty of time to learn. Once set up, I think it would be a good way to make money while cycling touring, as well as being a good opportunity to learn about SEO and website management.

You can either create your blog on your own website, which means you’re able to add affiliate links and do pretty much whatever you like with your blog. Or, you can try a site like Niume. Niume is a blogging site that pays you per post view. Earn $1 by just signing up here.

  • Website

This needs to be broken down into sub-categories:

a) Adsense/ affiliate links: from what I’ve read, unless you have a huge and constant amount of traffic, then you’re unlikely going to make a lot (if any), money from ads and affiliate links on your website. Our affiliates include, Amazon, booking.com and World Nomads.

b) Ebook: writing and selling an Ebook. I’m experimenting with this at the moment: check out our ebooks!

c) Selling a course/ giving advice.

  • Teach English online

I have taught English as a second language for English First. Before English First, I taught for a Japanese English school, called Best Teacher. The pay isn’t fantastic, but if you’re travelling through Central America, or Asia, then you’ll definitely be able to save some money through teaching online. Maybe not a good option to make money while cycle touring, but perhaps a good way to make some money in between touring. I’ve just started teaching for a new school that is really flexible on how many hours you can teach, which is great for when you’re on the move. It’s called Cambly.

  • What do we need money for?

All we really will need is food and accommodation. There are a few good options for working in exchange for your food and board. I’ve had some great experiences on helpx, when I first moved to Canada and was looking for work. Some other alternatives include, wooffing and workaway. Hostel International also have an intern program, which works in the same way, and of course you could always contact places directly to find out whether they offer work exchange.

  • Sponsorship/ Grants

Pretty difficult and time consuming to get, but definitely worth a try. I’ve started to put together a list of grants and potential sponsors to contact, however I think perhaps, we will have more luck, once we have built up our followers. So far we have received free cycle gear to trial, but no financial sponsors.

Keep in mind the more followers you have the more likely you are to receive sponsorship.

  • Crowdfunding

I haven’t looked to much into this, but I have noticed that trevolta is crowdfunding platform for travel related crowdfunding projects. This is a bit controversial, and probably not something we will pursue, unless we start cycling for a cause!

This is something else I’ve just started playing around with. Like the affiliate website links, I think you need a lot of traffic before you actually start making much money, but once established it could be a good way to make money while cycle touring. YouTube has also just changed their requirements, meaning you have to have at least 10,000 total views before you can earn anything. They have also decreased the amount you earn per view.

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How do you make money while cycle touring or travelling? We’d love to hear your tips and tricks.

If you enjoyed the article, then you might also enjoy our article on Accommodation Options for Cycle Tourists.

5 Replies to “How to make money while cycle touring”

  1. I’ve tried a couple of these and they’ve worked really well! I love helpx and workaway, it’s such a great way of meeting new people and learning about the local culture. There’s no better way to experience a city or country than with a local host.

    1. Hi Karen, I did helpx in Canada and it was amazing! I even delivered a newborn lamb. I’m glad you also had a good experience with helpx and workaway.

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