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Old 02-06-2019, 05:47 PM   #1
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Nomadic Income??

Hi all. Wanted to pick a few brains. What do you do for nomadic income while living in your Skoolie/traveling.

I will be jumping into the bus life hopefully within the year, and really have to figure this out in order to do so.

I have a background in law enforcement, and as a first responder... as well as doing freelance photography.

Any and all advice is appreciated! Thanks - Owen
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Old 02-06-2019, 08:30 PM   #2
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Your LEO background could help with a private investigator license, although depending on your state you may be required to work for a company instead of a private individual. This pretty much locks you into the state with the exceptions of some allowances for investigations originating in other surrounding states.

Not too much in terms of income with first responders and a skoolie, I could see disaster relief efforts but these are usually charity. Not suggesting we need to make money to help people, but trying to stay with the topic.


Photography is a darn good skill to have when traveling a lot, be it a skoolie or a trucker or long distance contractor. How you go about publishing and making an income though, that's beyond me, but I know a few people I came upon during my skoolie research worked as graphic designers and photographers, although I'm not sure at what capacity.


Look for and consider any remote based jobs that don't require you to have any form of set office. Remote generally suggests this, but not always - in Colorado you had "remote" positions....in the middle of nowhere in a little building.


IT seems to be a good field, from personal experience both as a career and hobby. As long as you have cell signal and cellular modem, a remote tech or developer is a good fit for the travel lifestyle. This is the route I'm going to end up taking most likely.


My dad is thinking of building a skoolie as well, but using it as a mobile mechanic. Not in the skillset you suggested, but staying within the mobile theme, a mobile business is something I'd consider. Mobile photography studio, although this may eat up space.
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Old 02-06-2019, 08:52 PM   #3
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Work camping

Have you read anything about Work Camping (some people spell it Workamping but that seems both cute and a remnant of Nazi Germany so I stick with the normal spelling)? I've never done it but lots of people have. These are jobs where you work at a campground, park, or facility either short term or for a full season in exchange for money and a free place to camp. I'm not sure how receptive these jobs are to skoolies, especially the "camp host" positions, because we seem to have a bad rap in comparison with "regular" RVs.

I write articles online, which of course can be done anywhere; I'm a writer by profession but lots of people who are not do this, mainly because they have a particular area of expertise and they seek out places to write about that topic.

I understand a lot of nomads spend the holiday season working for Amazon. They apparently have a program called Camperforce that actively recruits nomads for their fulfillment centers.

Nowadays, any job you could do from home, you can do on the road. I know people who worked from home doing customer service on the phone, even telephone psychics, before they hit the road, and they kept right on working once they were out there.

Myself, I've designed my bus so that once I go full time I will be able to continue my other current occupation - selling vintage and antique items - right out of the bus. It of course means having a lot of discipline; I used to have a 2000 square foot store and a warehouse, now I have a 75 square foot living space that doubles as a warehouse.
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Old 02-06-2019, 08:59 PM   #4
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" I used to have a 2000 square foot store and a warehouse, now I have a 75 square foot living space that doubles as a warehouse."


"Smalls"for sure.
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Old 02-06-2019, 09:01 PM   #5
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" I used to have a 2000 square foot store and a warehouse, now I have a 75 square foot living space that doubles as a warehouse."


"Smalls"for sure.
Yup. Moving toward ephemera and jewelry exclusively, but right now my overheads are full of tchotchkes of various types.
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Old 02-06-2019, 09:06 PM   #6
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I had a couple of antique shops for years. Hard to get out of your blood ain't it? My place is still full of stuff I didn't want to part with but most have been better investments than the Stock Market...and a whole lot more fun!



And then there is always the thrill of the hunt for that next "big find"!


Best of luck in your travels.
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Old 02-06-2019, 09:19 PM   #7
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And then there is always the thrill of the hunt for that next "big find"!

Lucky for me the hunt is the big high - I never was much for keeping things. I'd prefer to find them, find the person they're supposed to move on to, then use the money they pay me to fund the next hunt!

Thanks for your good wishes, I'm a while from being able to go full time but I am soooo ready.
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Old 02-07-2019, 06:20 AM   #8
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I've worked as a freelance marketing consultant and web designer for the past five years. I'm able to work completely remotely which means there shouldn't be a change in income when I move into the bus. You could look into some sort of consulting business related to your background.
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Old 02-07-2019, 06:56 AM   #9
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The folks who I know living nomadic lifestyles in buses all have IT businesses or something involving computers or the internet.
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Old 02-07-2019, 07:59 AM   #10
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The folks who I know living nomadic lifestyles in buses all have IT businesses or something involving computers or the internet.
There was also a goat owning couple that worked the sugar beet harvest and other types of seasonal labor jobs.
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