Let’s get one thing clear, I’m not much of a guru on the subject of money. If making money is your main objective then click here to exit this page and enter Bloomberg’s mind-numbing money-making portal.
Still here? Then this means you’re ready to even consider letting go of your conventional pre-programmed get-a-job-after-college-and-save-money-until-you-retire-and-die values.
That’s exactly what I did after I worked in several companies (big & small), started my own, and even became a corporate expat (imagine that!). I realized after a certain point that I’m not a career driven money making humanoid, and this became very clear to me a few years ago while travelling to an exotic location. I realized there and then that the world is too big and too diverse to be stuck in only one place, let alone a cubicle or an office, and I decided to become a traveler. I’m sure a lot of you are in doubt as well and think you don’t have other options but wish you could just quit and travel the world. I’m here to tell you that you do and you can. Now I’m not claiming I have all the answers but what I can confidently say is that I’ve been able to dabble rather successfully with a little bit of everything to “make a living”. This diversification allowed me to develop independent, free style entrepreneurial thinking, with an ‘on the move’ philosophy.
Almost everyone is unhappy with their current job, and what’s keeping them from moving forward (or moving at all) is the overshadowing concern of their financial situation, so they stagnate and stay where they are, endlessly running in a loop, like the proverbial hamster, with the words ‘stuck’, ‘I wish’, and ‘freedom’ forming a pattern of general dissatisfaction. I’m here to tell you that with an open mind, a little courage, creativity, and some luck, it’s possible to take a different unconventional approach and even turn your passion for traveling into a lifestyle and a source of income.
Why not become a travel entrepreneur?
During my travels I discovered so many interesting opportunities and ideas, especially in developing countries, that could change the way you look at business and the concept of work. Your 9 to 5 job is not the only option you have. Don’t be scared to go off the beaten path in search of inspiration. The ‘deeper’ and more remotely you go the more valuable the information you gather becomes to you and to other people. You can sell that information, use it for yourself, or share it with other like-minded people who would possibly join you in a profitable and fun venture.
While traveling you should keep a look out for investment and business opportunities in each specific country. Generally it seems that all around the world businesses are conducted in similar ways and under the same rules. People share the same basic needs normally, with a few exceptions here and there, so your ideas are just as good and can be appreciated anywhere. You want to open a bar or restaurant in South America? Teach diving or a language in Asia? Import fabrics or accessories? Export your country’s famous herbs? Become a tour guide? Start a dot com? I don’t see why not! Just start somewhere.
While on a trip find out about the country’s foreign investment laws and tax information, as well as the price of real estate, and keep an eye out for what products are lacking and in demand, and the Internet start-ups situation (what are the success stories, what’s booming, and what’s still lacking…). Do your research before you go and especially while there. Speak to the locals, ask questions, even silly ones, and for god’s sake get immersed into the culture! These are the steps that will open up your mind and widen your gaze.
Hopefully I have helped jump-start your entrepreneurial thinking to help you see the opportunities in your travels. We travel to ‘find ourselves’ but in fact we are also ‘investing in ourselves’. By looking at traveling with an entrepreneurial perspective you are potentially building something of great importance that will assist you financially during and after your travels.
In the future, I’ll be posting additional insights, tips and other interesting opportunities out there. For now, the rest of the story is up to you…