Funding longer term adventure travel that spans months or years can be financially challenging, but there are several approaches for financing your adventure, including savings, active income, and passive income.
Here we’re diving into four common financial models to fund adventure that we’ve seen over the years for adventures . While many adventurers straddle these categories, breaking them into distinct groups allows for an easier examination of the pros and cons of each.
When you’re developing the model by which you will make money and travel, you’ll likely determine how much of each financial type of adventurer you are.
Let us bring you adventure every day.
Like AdventurePossible.com on Facebook.
The Once-In-A-Lifetime Adventurer
The Once-In-A-Lifetime Adventurer saves money in order to realize the big and awesome adventure of which they have always dreamed, perhaps cycling across America or thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail.
“Once-in-a-lifetime” is probably a little too finite for this category, and maybe the moniker “Once-Every-Decade Adventurer” is more accurate. The point, regardless, is that this adventurer does not intend to adopt a lifestyle of adventure. The person is more likely to follow a more normal arc in life, growing a successful corporate career or being committed to philanthropy. That’s their normal life, and adventure is the occasional departure from normal.
In this type of adventure, paying for an adventure entirely through savings makes a lot of sense.
On such a short duration adventure, there may be less need to develop passive and active income streams as we describe later in this article. This is especially true if the adventurer has saved wisely for adventure and has a neat exit plan for leaving behind employment and home and also a solid reentry plan.
The great advantage of this approach is that the adventurer can fully commit to the experience. Cash reserves may be dwindling, but that’s all part of the plan and therefore shouldn’t induce much stress.
After the adventure, the traveler returns to their home and job, changed for the better by their adventure.
The Repeat Adventurer
The Repeat Adventurer lives an intentional cycle of work and adventure. This person works for long enough to save and plan for an adventure. They quit work, embark on the adventure, and deplete their travel nut. When they run out of money, they return to work to do it all over again.
Pros: Unlike those adventurers attempting to make money and travel, you don’t have the stress of trying to make money. You don’t have employers to placate, clients to please, or a business to run. You know that you only have a certain amount to spend, and you’re often at ease as your travel nut shrinks because you know that you’ll soon be back at work to refill the kitty.
Cons: If you depend on other people or companies to hire you, then a track record of short tenured jobs and periods of unemployment can make starting and stopping work a challenge. Also, one of the biggest pains of any adventure is simply getting out the door. It takes commitment and planning to leave, and the trappings of a normal life often create inertia that is difficult to overcome.
The Working Adventurer
The Working Adventurer makes money by working while traveling. This is an increasingly popular option as people turn the adventure lifestyle into a sustainable lifestyle.
The work for adventurers on the go often comes in the form of consulting or contract work, odd jobs along the journey, or perhaps running a small business. For adventurers that are more inclined to be in one or two places, perhaps there are opportunities teach language abroad or manning the front desk at a resort.
Some occupations where people tend to make money and travel are nurses, teachers, graphic designers, web developers, engineers, construction workers, and day traders.
Most of the folks that we know who squarely fit into this Working Adventurer category have found a way to turn their original full-time occupation into a part-time or remote job.
Pros: In this situation, an adventurer can likely save less money overall and head out sooner than if they were to spend the time saving to pay for the entire journey.
Unlike The Repeat Adventurer, who depletes their savings to $0, The Working Adventurer will have cash flow while traveling that will at least cover the burn rate. For the really fortunate, perhaps they can even begin to save or invest money, developing passive income streams to supplement or replace active income streams (i.e. work).
Cons: The biggest con is that you carry some of the stresses of work with you on the adventure, perhaps limiting your mental and emotional liberation.
For those adventurers working while roaming the world, there are significant work challenges and headaches. Work will likely impact the adventure travel itinerary, affecting the places you go and the time you spend there. If you rely on the internet to make your living, then you’ll spend time cussing at poor signals and hunting down coffee shops for wifi.
If you are working a more stationary job like working at a hotel or school, you’ll likely have many of the same life limitations and stresses that you would have with a part- or full-time job at home. You will have to put in hours, potentially work weekends, and earn vacation days for exploration.
The Financially Independent Adventurer
The Financially Independent Adventurer is the adventurer of independent means who largely derives income from passive income earning activities, such as real estate, investment income, or royalties, which cover the cost of the adventure, emergencies, and other expenses.
While there is probably a sliver of Financially Independent Adventurers who are super rich or trust fund babies, this adventurer is not necessarily rich. They do have enough cash flow though from various investments or assets to pay for their adventure so that the lifestyle is sustainable. They have little obligation to work or other people, such as employers and customers, and they can focus on the people, places, and experiences of the adventure.
A large group of adventurers who fit this mold are retirees, those who put in forty years of work and savings to build a nest egg that funds the adventure lifestyle. However, there is an emerging group of younger adventurers who are Financially Independent Adventurers. These folks aren’t rich, but they have made financial decisions and personal investments that have allowed them to develop various passive income streams that can sustain a modest adventure lifestyle.
While there are drawbacks to this lifestyle, such as closely managing risk to protect investments and mitigate adventure disasters, we at AdventurePossible.com strive to become financially independent adventurers, and we aim to demonstrate the ways in which ambitious people can achieve the lifestyle as well.
The Possibilities for Funding Adventure Travel are Endless
These four models significantly generalize the models for making money while traveling, but the simplicity of comparing a few categories helps demonstrate some of the core approaches to funding adventure.
Know another financial type of adventurer? Share below in the comments.