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Working on the road: How to make money remotely and live in a van

Working on the road: How to make money remotely and live in a van

One of the best things about van life is that it allows you to travel and see new places. But for most people, the only way to make van life possible is if they have a steady source of income while they are on the road. If you’re someone who is looking to live in a van and work remotely, there are a few things you need to keep in mind. Here are some tips for working on the road and making money remotely!

How I work remotely

There are tons of ways that people are working remotely. I left my old job and found a new one that was remote-based. Meg convinced her boss that she could do her work remotely. It was a slow process, but it worked out for us, obviously.

Before working in my current van life-friendly job, I was required to be on location for things like TV interviews and influencer gatherings that I put together for the brands I worked with. It sounds glamorous but I wanted to see the world and my 60 hours working week with much of it being location-based made my traveling dream really challenging. I knew I needed a change. It took a little while to work up the courage but I finally started applying for jobs on LinkedIn that advertised working from home.

I ended up applying for a company that I worked for while going to college. It was a lower-paying entry-level job that I was pretty overqualified for but it was a remote-based position, exactly what I wanted. Plus, my wife worked in a different department at the same company so we’d get additional HSA contribution bonuses that made a big difference for us.

The problem was that they require their employees, for tax purposes apparently, to work from Utah and I didn’t know how that would work if we moved into a van.

To be honest, at this point, we weren’t serious about living in a van full-time. I was just happy to stop working when I clocked out (that’s right, it was also hourly) and save money and time on the commute to work.

However, moving to a job that was already remote made the transition to working from a van all over the united states much easier. I’ll get into that transition in a minute. Meg was the one that had to be in the office 1-2 times per week so she had the heavy lifting when it came to convincing her boss that working from a van would work out.

You may not want to hear this, but Meg worked with her boss for at least 6-months, before he agreed that it was something she could try, and then another 6-months before we were actually on the road.

It started with her joking with her boss that she could do her job from anywhere, even in a van. You know, just to feel the water out. Then she told him that she actually wants to, sometime in the distant future, work from a van. She explained how she saw her current position working for that. She kept him updated with things that we learned along the way like how wifi would work in a van and how we’d ensure the internet was working. Eventually, he said that it might work out.

And then her boss left the company. All of that work, warming up her boss, and getting him to agree to let her work from a van, seemed to be blown out the window. Little did we know, that he had been talking to his boss, you know the big boss about it. The big boss was a bit less convinced that Meg could work from home but after reviewing her performance, talking to the HR company, and I’m assuming some other people that work remotely, they decided it was worth trying for Meg.

I didn’t think my manager knew that we were moving into a van because I didn’t outright tell her. I figured that I could probably get away with it as long as I kept my performance up. Plus, I didn’t talk on the phone with customers or answer emails so I had clear expectations for what doing a good job meant. I was wrong though – my manager did know. Luckily, she was really nice about it and honestly happy for me. She recognized that I was performing well on the team and that as long as I kept my performance up, it’d be ok.

The only challenge from there was that tax question. The company still required that both of us be Utah residents. If we could work that part out, then we didn’t have to jump through any other hoops, and company requirements wouldn’t need to change. Luckily, we already planned on keeping our address in Utah. My parents and brothers also live in Utah and they agreed that it’d be ok if we used their address for our billing and mailing address. Essentially, we’ve maintained our residency in Utah – perfect.

Decide what type of work you can do remotely – consider your skills and experience

For those looking to embark on a life of van dwelling, one of the first decisions you will need to make is how to sustain yourself and your lifestyle.

Thankfully, with today’s digital opportunities, there are more options than ever when it comes to remote work — no need for constant location fixed employment! Consider the skills and experience you have; what can you offer the world from your living space on wheels?

Brainstorm ideas in terms of what type of service or product you can provide remotely, from writing freelance articles and blogging to teaching online lessons and web development.

As you travel, take advantage of every opportunity that comes your way, perhaps attending networking events or utilizing virtual platforms such as LinkedIn. There are plenty of ways to earn an income using your various gifts and capabilities – so don’t be afraid to get creative!

Can you do your current job remotely?

Depending on the task of the job, many roles and responsibilities can actually now be completed from virtually anywhere with the help of modern technology.

This can benefit both the employer and employee; while the employee has an alternate work setup that fits their lifestyle goals, it can also save costs for the company such as rent or equipment fees.

Approaching your boss with this idea should be done professionally and respectfully; you should illustrate clearly how working remotely will be beneficial for you and them, with a plan as to how you will stay productive outside of a traditional office setting.

Though this isn’t how Meg did it, you may want to approach your boss more formally with an email broaching the topic.

Even something like this: I’m confident that with the right technology and communication, I can still meet job expectations while living my van life. That’s why I wanted to reach out to you and see how we could arrange for me to work remotely.

With what types of technology would you feel comfortable with this arrangement? What routine check-ins and updates do you want me to provide? I’m happy to do whatever it takes for us both to be satisfied with this arrangement if it works out as planned.

Look for remote jobs in your field – there are many websites that list remote job openings

If you are serious about living the van life, it is important to make sure you have a secure financial foundation. Finding work in your field that can be done remotely is a great way to make this happen.

Luckily, their are many websites out there devoted entirely to promoting job openings you can do from any place with an internet connection.

With just a few clicks, you may find the perfect remote job and embark on a journey without limits – no office, no boring commute – accessing amazing new places while doing meaningful work that aligns with your career goals.

Consider freelance work or starting your own business – this can be a great way to make money while living in a van

If you’re looking for a way to sustain a living in your van, consider freelancing or starting up your own business. This option allows you to remain mobile while still earning an income.

Whether you are a skilled writer, artist, consultant, or any other type of service worker, the digital age has created opportunities that allow you to make money remotely.

While it can be daunting starting off on this your own, there is so much potential with this option as you have the ability to create your own hours and work on projects that are meaningful to you.

If this sounds like something that would work well for your lifestyle then it’s definitely worth considering.

Make sure you have a good internet connection – this is essential for working remotely

If you want to make van life a reality, having strong internet connectivity should be one of your key concerns. After all, if you want to make living on the road sustainable, it’s essential that you have a steady source of income in order to do so – and for most people, this means working remotely.

Having a good connection wherever you go can help ensure that you can work as efficiently as possible while traveling; with reliable internet, you don’t need to worry about saving documents or staying productive wherever your journey takes you.

So don’t forget: if tackling van life head-on is your priority, make sure to bring along a great internet connection!

Be prepared to live a simple life – van life is not always glamorous, but it can be rewarding

When people choose to embrace van life, it’s important to come fully prepared for simpler living. While there are certainly moments of adventure and breathtaking beauty, van life is not always glamorous.

But don’t let that scare you away! Accepting a simpler lifestyle will allow you to get out and explore more than ever before, thus providing countless rewards and advantages.

With some planning ahead of time and a steady income source, you can make van life possible with relative ease – making memories of a lifetime in the process.