If you want to move abroad or travel, there is no time like the present. Although many higher-paying jobs are reserved for those with advanced education or entrepreneurial skills, there are tons of ways you can get started and earn a living while you travel, live and work abroad.
In the past you had to specialize in a specific career that would allow you to work abroad, such as English teacher, engineer, diplomat, etc. This is how I started my international career — as an English teacher.
After some time I realized that I could achieve more freedom and opportunities by not just working in a specific country abroad, but by actually working online. And the interesting thing is that although I did study for a master’s degree, advanced degrees are not needed for the following ways you can work online from anywhere with internet.
This article is for you if you’re interested in having the flexibility to bring your work with you no matter where you want to live!
Here are five ways that I have created work for myself or paid others for work online immediately. Unlike making money via YouTube, or as an expert business coach, or other location-independent career, these suggestions do not require a long time to build up an audience, do not require many years of experience or advanced degrees.
For all of these, entry level pay rates for native English speakers start around $10/hour. Keep in mind that if you’re living abroad in a country in East Asia, Eastern Europe or South America, your pay will go a lot further than it does in the US! Also, these are great ways to start and build your experience while you think of your next online freelancing or entrepreneurial work..
1. Teach English online. If you like helping people to communicate clearly, are patient and culturally sensitive, this could be a great fit for you! I recommend getting started on one of many language-teaching platforms that already exist before trying to strike out on your own. See if you like it, and gain the knowledge and experience you need for possibly doing your own thing later like I do at Go Natural English. Some company suggestions that I have worked with as sponsors in my English teaching YouTube channel are Verbling, iTalki, Lingoda and Cambly.
2. Become a Virtual Assistant (VA). If you are organized and enjoy administrative, communication, and other business-building tasks, this could be a great fit for you. Usually you need to have good English writing skills, be able to follow directions, and meet occasionally online or on the phone for meetings with your boss. As a VA, you could provide a variety of tasks including blog post writing, email writing, data entry, basic image design, and much more! You might want to specialize in one area. I have found VAs through my personal network, so if you’re interested in this kind of job, reach out to your friends who are already working online.
3. Social Media Community Manager. Do you use Facebook? Do you know how to engage people? With a little research into how online social media marketing works, and understanding the needs of your boss, this could be an awesome job for you to do while you travel. You’ll need good English skills, professionalism, and social media marketing savvy.
4. Writer. Do you enjoy writing? Always got “A”s in English class? Want to be able to batch your work and work well under deadlines? Then think about becoming a ghost writer, which means you help established writers with their work. You could write blog posts, social media posts, and even help with ebooks. There are tons of opportunities, you just need to get connected with an individual or agency that needs help.
5. Audio / Video editor. Are you detail-oriented? Love spending hours pouring over making audio or video awesome? Prefer working with media than directly live with people? Learn an audio or video editing program and start offering your services to save content creators time! As someone who creates a lot of audio and video content, and with lots of friends who do too, I know there is a huge need for reliable A/V editors. Try posting for your first gigs on Fiverr or Upwork, or ask around and approach content creators for work.
These 5 ways of working online allow you to work from anywhere without an advanced degree, but you do need to be professional and have a solid basic education. Probably the most important thing in working online is to be reliable, communicative, and ethical. If you can do this and are ambitious to create a life where you can live wherever you want, then go for it! Trust me, opportunities are out there just waiting for you to do it!
If you are American or have spent most of your life in the US, it is key to emphasize your native English communication skills and cultural understanding of the US market. This will make you stand out in the global online freelancer market.