How to Ditch the Day Job and Travel Full Time

How to Ditch the Day Job and Travel Full Time

Are you tired of feeling tied to a desk and getting ready to indulge your inner nomad? You don’t have to commit to a traditional home or job if your heart belongs on the road. Ditching the conventional and exploring a drastically new lifestyle is easier than you think.

Eliminate Ordinary Expenses

Image via Flickr by aag_photos

If you’re ready to commit to full-time travel, one of the easiest ways to free up funds for the venture is to get free of the ordinary investments that eat up most family budgets. Put your belongings in storage and sell or rent out your home and you’ll no longer have monthly expenses like rent or mortgage payments and utilities. If you’re traveling abroad, you can also get rid of your car, cutting gas, insurance, maintenance, and automobile payments out of your budget.

Find an Alternative Living Arrangement

While you can cut back drastically on your belongings, most people will find that they want to hold on to more than what they can comfortably take along in a backpack. In these instances, it’s helpful to set up a small home base somewhere. This might be a friend’s basement where you can store a few boxes or a guest room at your parents’ house where you keep your bed and some major pieces of furniture.

If you’re traveling within the United States, you can also opt for a movable home. Trade your house for an RV, and live full-time on the road from your compact house on wheels.

Spend Like a Local

The key to affording full-time travel is to approach your expenses more like a local than like a tourist. When you’re on a traditional short-term vacation, you tend to spend and splurge so you can make the most of your limited time away. If you’re living on the road full-time, you’re not really on vacation anymore, you’re simply living in a wealth of different destinations.

Ask locals for recommendations as to the best places to eat, and you’ll often uncover inexpensive food stands and hole-in-the-wall restaurants where you can dine for just a few dollars. This is particularly true when you’re headed abroad. Better yet, skip Michelin-starred dining and instead learn how to cook simply with whatever facilities are available, relying heavily on local produce and groceries.

Invest in Affordable Entertainment

Seek out activities that are free or extremely cheap to keep you busy while living on the road. Rather than pay admission individually for great museums across the country, you can purchase a membership that gives you access to numerous institutions. The North American Reciprocal Museum (NARM) Association partners with destinations in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Bermuda, and El Salvador. Your membership will get you into everything from the Mark Twain House and Museum in Connecticut to the Daytona Beach Museum of Arts and Sciences to the UC Botanical Garden at Berkeley. If you’re interested in outdoor wonders, purchase an annual pass to the National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands throughout the United States. Valid for 12 months from the date of purchase, this pass admits up to two pass holders as well as all accompanying passengers in the vehicle.

Earn On the Road

Leaving the traditional desk job to travel doesn’t mean you have to give up your income entirely. There are many ways that you can earn money from the road. If you have a talent for writing and marketing, you can build your own travel blog to share your experiences and adventures. Are you a skilled salesman? Sign up to be a distributor for a company like Amway and you can connect with new customers everywhere you go.

If you’re living out of an RV, you can often sign up to work as a camp host at various campgrounds throughout the country. These stints last for a few months at a time, so you can enjoy the stability of getting to know a local area in-depth while still experiencing the nomadic pleasures of moving on to a new destination several times a year.

Don’t get caught in the daily grind if you yearn for something different. You can ditch the day job and explore a new lifestyle.


  1. Great suggestions! Somewhere in an alternate universe, this is the life I am living. Kid free, little responsibility and seeing as much of the world as possible.

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