Travelling can be an expensive business. Even once the flights, accommodation and car hire are all booked and paid for, you still have to factor in expenses once you are there, such as public transport, eating out, drinking at bars, and buying souvenirs to take home to friends and family. It can all quickly add up, meaning your carefully worked out budget is suddenly down the drain and you are facing the prospect of having to either go home early or ask for a loan from someone who you think might take sympathy on you. Or, you could work while you travel. Working while on the move has become an increasingly popular way for travelers to make money and extend their travels beyond the period that had initially been determined, while in some cases, injecting a bit of authenticity into their trip by spending time staying and working alongside locals. From freelance writing to looking after children to helping with the building of an eco-house, there is virtually no limit to what you can do to make a bit of money on the side when on your travels.
As a result, we’ve devised a list of the top six sites for travelling and working abroad, be it Bangkok, Berlin or Buenos Aires. Discover amazing jobs, access them on the move via smartphone, apply filters to narrow down results, read blog posts, and more, all by simply referring to the options on this carefully curated list. Working abroad has long been a popular choice for many travellers, however such a wide range of online resources now available it can be difficult to know where to look. Each site was thoroughly assessed to ensure that a selection of only the best were selected, with each review containing a brief summary of the service, its highlights, what makes it unique and its potential drawbacks, while the pros and cons of each one are listed in an easy-to-read set of bullet points below each review. There are hundreds of platforms all promising to offer you the best jobs available, however we’ve chosen only the ones that most suitably fit our criteria by considering a number of factors outlined below.
One of the first aspects of the travel and work abroad sites that was taken into account was whether it was mobile-friendly or, if not, then offered an application that could be downloaded to a smartphone or tablet. Naturally, when travelling you are constantly on the move meaning you will not always have access to a desktop in order to respond to messages and search for jobs. However, one thing that nearly every traveller will have on their person at all times is a smartphone, be it to take photos or send Whatsapp messages to family members back home. Therefore, the presence of a mobile-friendly version of the platform is an important attribute to be considered, as one that is difficult to navigate and does not offer all the same features on a smaller screen is not much good unless you carry your laptop around with you or find an internet cafe. When compiling the list, we ensured that only ones with a least a mobile-friendly version were included to ensure that all features of the platform could be used while on the go.
Another similarly important feature that was taken into account when reviewing the websites was the presence of search filters and ‘Sort By’ options. Clearly, when it comes to finding work, a number of different variables can come into play, such as pay, hours per week, location (if any), type and experience. The potential to quickly narrow these parameters down so that they match users’ specific requirements is, therefore, a useful feature to have included, saving time in scrolling through jobs in which you have no intention of undertaking. ‘Sort By’ options, meanwhile, work in a similar way to filters, however as the name suggests, they sort the results once users have added the appropriate filters, so jobs can be viewed in ascending or descending order depending on the category chosen. If, for example, you are desperate to find a job and do not want to be hampered by a lack of experience, you may sort results so that the ones requiring the least experience are displayed first and continue in ascending order. Or perhaps you are strapped for cash and need to make a significant amount in as short a time as possible, you may sort by jobs that offer the biggest salaries first.
A feature that is often overlooked but can make a website more comprehensive is the presence of a blog. Articles contained on blogs can range from inspirational destinations for travel, to stories of past experiences from fellow travellers, providing a useful resource for gaining tips, advice and general information on a variety of travel-related topics. Upwork is one example of a website that offers a blog, featuring stories from fellow freelancers, expert tips and advice, articles on different marketing strategies, as well as how to demand higher rates for your work. New articles are posted weekly, making it a infinitely resourceful place to gain insight into the world of freelancing, and find out if it is something that would suit you before getting started. Worldpackers, meanwhile, offers a ‘Content from the Community’ section, which includes a variety of different articles containing tips, guides and inspiration offered by other ‘Worldpackers’. Posts include ‘How to work with social media while abroad’, ‘Dos and Don’ts of solo travelling as a girl’, and ‘The best travel apps that will help you save time and money in Europe’. These contribute towards making the websites more comprehensive and resourceful for travelers, and were ultimately factored into the review process.
Pricing was another aspect of the services that was taken into account when reviewing each one. Not just pricing but also value for money, as ‘free to sign up’ platforms do not necessarily represent the best option as there may be commission charged on work later on down the line. Upwork is a service that is free to register, granting you access to thousands of job listings that can be applied for using free credits. However, once you have completed a job and received payment, Upwork with take a 20% fee for acting as a middle man between worker and employer. Over time, this can make their platform significantly more expensive than one such as Workaway, which charges a fee of around $30 to sign up, but do not charge anything after that. Worldpackers, on the other hand, offer a great platform with a mobile application and 24/7 support and personal travel experts available before, during and
after trip. Nevertheless, where Workaway charge a yearly membership, Worldpackers charges $50 USD per trip confirmation, meaning if you plan on making multiple trips in a year it can end up being quite expensive. Therefore, it was important to consider price and value for money as you do not want to end up feeling as though you have worked hard only to have your hard earned cash taken away from you.
Altogether, our list of sites for travelling and working abroad is a great resource for taking full advantage, and potentially, extending your trip away. By taking into account the various different factors mentioned above, we’ve been able to narrow down the list into six of the very best. Working abroad may seem like a drag when you should be kicking back and relaxing, however it can often enrich the experience, helping you to connect with local people and experience destinations in a unique way. Freelancing, meanwhile, will provide you with the freedom to work where you want, be it a beach-side bar or a bustling city cafe, and continue to travel without having to worry too much about your finances. Each has been carefully checked and extensively reviewed to provide six genuine and trustworthy websites to help you find work while on your travels.