This guide to the best passive income ideas will help you make money while traveling the world!
Is it just a pipedream to think you can make money while traveling the world? Not at all!
In fact, there are plenty of ways to make passive income as you travel. So, whether you just want to earn a little extra cash, or are looking for way to make money that will support your entire trip around the world, these ideas should help.
What is passive income?
First of all, I should say that the idea of passive income is a myth. Nothing is 100% passive.
For example, investments need to be managed to one extent or another, and renting out your property on AirBnB through an agency would involve emails and calls at some stage. Even trust-fund kids probably have to check in with their relatives or financial advisors regularly!
Another thing that some people don't realize, is that to generate money passively in the present or future, means you (or someone else!) had to put in some work in the past.
For example, I can probably leave this travel blog untouched for a few months and receive a healthy 5 figure income each month. Sounds great, but I did put 15 years of hard work into it previously though!
So, what I'm trying to say, is that there is no magic button to press that generates a passive income stream. Instead, you need to invest either time or money into a project or investment that can produce a relatively hands off income stream as you travel.
Related: How to quit your job and travel the world
Passive Income Ideas For Travel
For the purposes of this article on how to receive a passive income when traveling, I'll describe some methods that require minimum time input when you are actually out on the road. As mentioned, some or perhaps even all of these ways of earning a passive income so you can travel require either a time or a money investment up front.
If you're interested in digital nomad jobs or ways of making money as you travel, these other articles will be a better read for you:
Invest in rental properties
Rental properties can be a great source of passive income if you purchase them in favorable locations, and can produce a healthy income stream if you manage them correctly.
To be more hands off, you might want a management company to take care of the day to day running of the properties, although this will eat into your potential profits.
As a way of making passive income, rental properties sound attractive, but keep in mind that as we transition from 2022 to 2023, a possible recession may affect companies that want to rent commercial property, so this is something worth looking into.
Related: Common travel mistakes
Rent out your home long term or on AirBnB
If you are planning to travel for a year or two (or longer!), and want to keep your home so you have something to return back to, then rent your home long term or on AirBnB.
This can be a great way of generating passive income while you are away, but as with investment rentals, there are potential drawbacks such as the difficulty of finding the right tenants or managing the property.
Getting a property management company to take care of the logistics of your rentals can be a great way to secure steady income and take care of the smaller hassles that might arise.
Invest in stocks, shares, and index funds
Diversifying your investments is one of the best techniques for generating passive income. Investing in stocks, shares, and index funds can give you access to different markets and asset classes that provide you with a steady income stream.
Stocks can go up, and they can go down. Stocks and shares that offer great dividends one year may cut dividends the next. As such, you really need a good mindset and to cope with any downside to stock market movements.
The advantage though, is that investment in stocks is different to trading. If you have bought stocks and shares with a mind to hold them for 5 years or more, you don't have to pay close attention to the markets every day.
By taking a long-term view and investing in stocks, shares, or index funds with good dividends you can generate a steady passive income stream while you are traveling. The key is picking the right investments for your risk appetite.
Related: Living a laptop lifestyle
Create and sell digital products, such as ebooks, courses, or printables
In order to align with the passive income ideal, setting up this type of business requires some investment of time and money at the beginning, but once it is set up, you can generate a steady income stream with little effort.
In order to do this successfully however, you need to create high quality products that people actually want to buy. They would also need to be based on ever-green concepts rather than following trends, so you don't need to constantly update your product.
Once you have created and marketed your products, you can set up an automatic payment system so customers can purchase your digital products anytime and anywhere across the globe, while you are out on the road traveling.
Depending on the scale of your operation, this concept could create passive income that could cover some or all of your expenses while you travel.
Related: How to plan a workation
Affiliate marketing is another way to begin your passive income journey. You'll need to research affiliate programs related to your niche and join a few of them. You then need to promote the products or services you are affiliated with via social media, websites, or blogs.
When visitors click on the affiliate links, they get redirected to partner websites where they can make a purchase. Each time someone makes a purchase through one of your links, you get a commission, usually in the form of a percentage or flat fee.
As with creating digital products, this can be relatively low effort once it is set up and running, and you can generate income while traveling as long as people are buying through your affiliate links.
Related: How to afford travel long term
Sell physical products through an online store or drop-shipping service
Developing your own business that can be run remotely is one of the best passive income strategies. The business can even grow as you travel!
Now, in order to generate passive income, you don't need to manufacture and stock your own products. You can simply use a drop-shipping service that allows you to advertise products online and ship them directly from the supplier to the customer.
This eliminates all of the hassle of stocking and shipping products yourself, while also allowing you to focus more on marketing your business. Many people make a good monthly income from Amazon FBA for example.
Related: How to keep your travel memories alive
Semi-Passive Income Ideas
The ideas of ways to make money passively listed so far require minimal effort once the work has been put in first. If you are looking for other ways to earn money that might require a little more time such as a few hours a week, here's some suggestions:
Start a Travel Blog or YouTube Channel
This can be quite a competitive field, but it is still possible to generate a decent income from either a travel blog or YouTube channel. You'd need to produce high quality content and invest time in building your audience, but if you can do that then the rewards can be significant.
The key is to monetize your blog or channel – this could include selling products directly via your platform, affiliate marketing, or advertising like Google Adsense.
Youtube offers the better means of earning passive income as you only need to make the videos once, and they will stay live on your channel forever. Don't underestimate the amount of work needed to get to a point where you can generate passive income from either platform though – it will take time, effort and patience.
Related: Reasons to travel around the world
While it is never completely passive to sell your services as a freelancer, you could perhaps devise a service which is relatively replicable. An idea for this, would be to perform SEO analysis of people's websites and produce a report for them.
Also read: Digital Nomad Jobs For Beginners
Teaching English Online
You only need a few students to make a decent income, and you can even work with other teachers to cover multiple time zones. Again, the setup is not completely passive in the sense of everything being automated – but you can outsource certain elements such as marketing, or even teaching in some cases if you transition from being a teacher into a business owner who employs teachers.
Related: How to plan the trip of a lifetime
Finally, rather than committing to a full time location independent job, why not pick up casual work such as fruit picking over summer? Not only is it good for the bank balance, but you also get to travel and experience a variety of places.
Related: How to work and travel around the world
I hope this guide on how to generate passive income while traveling the world has helped you decide whether you want to earn money online, look at investments, or sparked your imagination in some other way!
Do you have any tips to add? Please leave a comment below!
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