Editor’s Note: Another great way to work and travel is to be a videographer! We recently held a contest to “Win Your Dream Travel Job” where we selected 4 finalists to travel the world shooting video. For 60 days, these teams traveled and filmed in some of the world’s top destinations, documenting their experiences along the way. Go here to watch their unforgettable journey!
Do you dream of traveling the world and getting paid? There are plenty of careers that can make this dream a reality. Of course, there are the obvious jobs like working for the airline industry, cruise ships, tour operators and more, but then, there are also the jobs that require a passion for something other than just travel.
The tried-and-true travel gigs, like those in the airline industry, are getting harder and harder to come by. And they aren’t easy.
Common travel jobs
A flight attendant’s job doesn’t just begin and end on the airplane. There are pre-flight briefings to attend, cleaning and preparing the airplane for passengers, and then the in-flight service. The job requires a steady smile, the utmost patience and even temper and the ability to not crumble under pressure. You’ve all seen the Jet Blue flight attendant’s freak out, right?
While there are plenty of perks to being a flight attendant, particularly if you can score the international routes, the job requires long hours, oftentimes cranky people, and nights, holidays and weekends. Oftentimes airlines do intense training programs to prepare people for these jobs. They typically require the person relocating to a training facility for a month and receiving a stipend for their time, before actually being offered a position.
As for being a pilot, you’ll need to have an intimate understanding of flying, including being in-the-know in regards to flight instruments, weather, math and safety standards. Pilots are required to maintain their knowledge and receive continuing education. You will also need to have an Airline Transport Pilot’s License. Like a flight attendant, the job requires dedication, long hours, and nights/holidays/weekends.
Being a tour operator isn’t always as glamorous as it sounds. In this position, you are responsible for arranging and promoting travel options, working with vendors (hotels, airlines and more) and being an expert on what you are selling. While this job does let workers experience the tours, don’t expect to be traveling full-time. Most of the time, you will be behind a desk.
There are plenty of options for working on a cruise ship – from being a server all the way up to captain. The opportunities on a ship are nearly endless, and let you wake up to a soft rocking of the water or in an exotic locale. The hours can be long, being on the sea can get tiring, and not being able to partake in the vacation aspect can grow frustrating, but it is definitely one way to hone those interpersonal skills while relishing in the beauty of the world.
And now … the jobs you might not think of!
For those with a creative eye, think about pursuing a career in videography, photography or even being a location scout for films and television shows. Jobs like this let you see and explore while getting paid. Granted, you won’t be sitting on a beach sipping cocktails while you work, but on those days off… no problem!
If you’re a talented writer, think about becoming a reporter or journalist. You don’t have to be a travel writer to see the world. From politics to entertainment to festivals and food, opportunities to tell stories about the world abound. The stories might not always unfold in ideal locations, but taking this path opens you up to opportunities most don’t experience.
If you’re super organized and like to plan events, becoming a meeting planner is yet another option for travel. A job in this field means scouting venues for space, and handling every detail of a meeting, including trying the foods, checking out hotels and planning the entire conference. It’s not an easy job, and the hours can be long, but the potential for travel is definitely there.
For those with a passion for being behind-the-scene, there are jobs as techs for bands and traveling shows that take people all over the world. You have to come with a knowledge of what it is you are doing, so think about what it is you love and then see if there is a fit. From rigging stages to tuning guitars and running lights, a job like this can take you all over the world. Like most jobs, the hours are long, oftentimes unconventional, and the traveling isn’t always comfortable. It includes overnight bus rides, early wake-up calls and driving through towns versus stopping to experience them. But it is a great way to see the world.
Being a sales rep is another way to travel. As a sales rep, it’s your job to take meetings with potential clients and tell them about your products. From hitting the trade show floors to personal meetings, travel is a huge part of the job. This one comes with perks, too, like a company credit card to wine and dine potential clients. But jobs like this also require being on the road (and working) for long periods of time.
- Diana Edelman
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