It’s a question people ask me all the time: how do I manage to travel so much and how do I make money to travel the world?
The important thing to realize is travel is my number one priority, whether I’m personally paying for it or a company is sponsoring my trip in exchange for work. For most people, their priorities are their children, their lifestyle or their job. Thankfully, my job happens to mesh well with my passion for travel.
I spend almost every penny I make on travel versus a home mortgage, new vehicle payments or eating out several times a month. In fact, I covered the basics of affording travel here with a few of the major ways I save my money.
But when I do earn money – what am I doing to make the cash to survive another year?
The quick answer is I am a digital media content creator. But after stating that, you might still be wondering what I do.
There are 6 main ways I make money to travel (and I am always looking for new gigs – so if you are looking for a content creator in any of these areas or know someone who does, don’t be afraid to reach out. I might just be able to help you create something for your business!):
Writing is one of my main sources of income. In fact, I often share my writing projects on my social media channels so you probably know about many of them! It’s also why I don’t blog quite as much as I used to. I try to sell my stories to publications rather than post them online for free when possible. It also allows me to be location independent which is how I can appear to be road tripping to Alaska but still completing assignments (as long as I have internet).
I freelance for magazines like CAA Saskatchewan, Prairies North, or the Green & White University of Saskatchewan Alumni Magazine. I write pieces like this Insider’s Guide to the City of Saskatoon or blog pieces for Tourism Regina, Tourism Saskatoon and Tourism Saskatchewan. I also do other freelance gigs like helping businesses create the foundation content for their websites. I am always on the lookout for new magazines or writing gigs to help me fund my travels.
One of the main reasons I fly back to Saskatchewan is because I often speak around my home province. This year I’ve spoke at the IABC Dare to Lead Conference, the IBAS Convention, the Ministry of Parks, Culture and Sport annual conference and numerous other conventions and AGM’s for groups.
I speak on a variety of topics focused on motivation and inspiration. Sometimes I speak on Saskatchewan and the amazing aspects of the province, and other times I focus on my journey to becoming a travel writer and how I made it all work. I also focus on content creation, social media and how to successfully reach a digital audience.
3. Video Creation
A growing passion of mine is creating promotional videos for clients to help showcase their business. Whether it’s a promo vid or a vlog to share through my social media channels, I love helping clients capture the spirit of their company in an interactive way for people to learn about it. A few years ago I teamed up with Sun Fun You: Mediterranean Voyages in Turkey and Greece to help promote their fitness cruises in the Mediterranean. This year I worked with the North West Company to help share what it’s like living and working in remote Canadian communities.
4. On-Camera Presenter and Event Host
In addition to behind-the-camera work, I also do on-camera work as a vlogger or presenter. I’ve worked with the Saskatchewan Snowmobile Association promoting both live videos through Facebook and static videos on their YouTube channel. I’ve also worked with the Canadian Press and the Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada to create a piece on Indigenous tourism in Saskatoon. I also host or emcee events like TEDx Saskatoon event as well the University of Saskatchewan Orientation for first-year students.
5. Social Media Influencing
Social media influencing has become more popular over the years and you’ll have noticed this in my channels, particularly this past year. It’s become a major part of how I earn an income. Clients reach out to me to partner together on collaborations to help promote their business or product through my channels and to my audience.
I’m particular with who I work with. They need to be companies I’m already a customer of, like McDonald’s. (If you haven’t read my “Big Mac in Every Country” you need to check it out). Companies I’m curious about, like Float Now here in Saskatoon. Companies I’m excited to try new experiences with, like with NFL Canada, or companies who are speaking up and changing our mindsets, like body positivity with Swimco.
I also specialize in travel landscape and Saskatchewan photography and sell images from my collection to interested clients as well as magazines. I’ve been featured in CAA Saskatchewan, Prairies North Magazine as well asthe 2016 and 2017 ExploreYXE Guidebooks. I’ve also had a small gallery in Shaunavon, Saskatchewan at Harvest Eatery and Fresh Market.
It’s a variety of ways but it all helps me get out and on the road – the one thing I love most.
I’m always looking for new projects and work, so if you know someone who may be interested in my services, don’t hesitate to contact me.