Travel more and work less, how great does that sound?
I started traveling internationally when I was 18 years old. I was almost immediately hooked on it. I loved being in foreign countries where everything was new for me, I loved being around people speaking another language, and I loved exploring all of the beautiful places other countries have to offer. I have been to El Salvador 5 times, I lived in Nicaragua for a year, I was in Cuba for 2 months, I have lived in Costa Rica for over a year, and I have been to Panama twice. My dream is to spend the rest of my life traveling and exploring, and I think I have a pretty good idea as to how to make that happen. Throughout all of my time abroad, I have had several jobs and believe I have really learned how to find jobs and make money while living in a foreign country. In order to save you the few years that I spent learning these ways to make money abroad, I have put them into this blog post for you.
This is how you can start making money and traveling right now!
1. Get your TEFL Certification
This is one of the first things I did when I decided I wanted to start traveling. I did so much research about how to make money while abroad and all roads led back to getting this certification. For those of you that don't know, a TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) Certification certifies you to teach English to children and adults at language schools around the world. Some countries require a bachelor's degree and a TEFL Certification while other countries only require a TEFL. I was 19 when I got my TEFL and did not have my bachelor's at the time. This is a big reason why I ended up in Nicaragua, because they didn't require me to have my bachelor's. Most countries in Central and South America do not require a bachelor's degree while countries in Europe do. I got my certification from International TEFL Academy online and then moved to Leon, Nicaragua where I did my student teaching in a classroom in Nicaragua. The experience was amazing and I 100% recommend it. One of the main reasons why I recommend getting this is because YOU WILL ALWAYS HAVE THIS TO FALL BACK ON! I don't always look for English teaching jobs first, but when all else fails, I have this certification and it is pretty easy to find a job abroad teaching English. Another huge benefit to this is that almost all English teaching jobs are part-time!
2. Work for VIPKid
VIPKid is an online English teaching company. THEY REQUIRE A BACHELOR'S DEGREE! So, sadly, if you don't have your degree this isn't for you. However, if you have your degree and want to make money teaching online, this is great! The schedule is a little weird because you are mostly teaching to children in China so you are teaching early in the morning and in the evenings but it pays $22/hour! If you are interested in this, here is the link to apply with my referral: https://www.vipkid.com/mkt/landing/personal?referralToken=ea54fa06e802306e1340f382b252bfe3&refereeId=40320876
Honestly, even if you aren't looking to travel this is a great way to bring in extra money before or after your regular job.
3. Do your Research and be Persistent!
This, is probably the most important of all of my tips. I have been creative and proactive when I decide I am going to find a job in whatever country I am in. I google all of the businesses in the area I'm living in and email ALL OF THEM. Sometimes, if I really like the company, I email them multiple times until they give me a chance to meet with someone or talk to someone. I'm going to give you a couple of examples. I got one of my English teaching jobs in Nicaragua after emailing the woman in charge three times. I got a job with a luxury real estate company in Nicaragua because they heard about me from a local business owner that I had interviewed with, and had also offered me a job. I got a job in tourism in Costa Rica after reaching out multiple times via email until I emailed at the right time and they were hiring. Finding a job abroad is all about being innovative and persistent. Jobs won't just fall into your lap, however I have found that if you are willing to put in the work, there is ALWAYS a way to get what you want.
The time I have spent abroad has definitely been the most fulfilling and rewarding for me. Being a solo female travel has enabled me to grow and evolve in ways I never would have if I took a more traditional path in life. This life isn't for everyone and along with the beautiful beaches and the once in a lifetime moments, there are also struggles and hard moments when you question yourself. I have found that the hard times are actually the moments that have promoted the most growth for me as a person. If moving abroad is something you have dreamed of but thought just couldn't happen, I am here to tell you that it can. If I can move to Nicaragua at 19 years old without a college degree and without speaking Spanish, so can you!