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The ideal life would be to have an excellent retirement income, and just be able to travel from one place to another, without a care in the world. But, Jim and I have been doing this since I was 48 and he was 51 — nowhere old enough to retire. So, how do we do it?
The answer to how people support themselves on the road is not the same for everyone.
There are many ways to create the income you need to accomplish the RV lifestyle.
- Work a few hours each week in exchange for your campsite
- Work fulltime for a campsite and pay for every hour worked
- Volunteer at state or national parks and see what comes from that
- Or just about anything in between
The point is… there is a way for you to live the dream of fulltime RVing and not break the bank.
How To Find Jobs On The Road
Before Jim and I ever sold our house, we subscribed to Workamper News. A magazine for people who live in RVs and work at campgrounds and resorts, it is published every other month. We eagerly anticipated each new issue of our “dream book”. We read every page and highlighted our dream jobs for a couple of years before we ever sold the house.
For an additional fee, you can have electronic access and download the new issue in a PDF file. They allow you to create a resume online at their site. The Awesome Applicant resumes are searchable by employers, who can then contact you if they wish to interview you over the phone for jobs at their property. There is an excellent online community with a forum. You don’t have to be a subscriber to the magazine to join the forum, but there are parts of the forum open only to subscribers.
Cool Works is a free website that posts openings for lots of “cool” jobs. Here you will find jobs at national parks, cruise lines, dude ranches, and other fun places. There are many places that advertise jobs on this site that are aimed at college students, international exchange students, and younger folks. But one section, called Older and Bolder, is aimed more at the, ahem, “more mature” fulltime RVers. They also have a forum, where you can ask questions about different places to find out more about them before you apply.
We have gotten a couple of good jobs from a free site called Happy Vagabonds. At HV, in addition to job ads placed by campground employers, there is a section for volunteers, as well as a wealth of other RV related information.
If you do have a retirement income, and would just like to volunteer a few hours per week in exchange for a campsite in some of the most beautiful places in the country, take a look at Volunteer.gov. Their website is searchable by state, zip code, or keyword. Or, just click on the map to look for opportunities by state. To find all camphost opportunities, just click on the lefthand side where it says Campground Hosts. While some of the postings there may be old, don’t hesitate to call the telephone number listed in the ad. We got a 3-month volunteer job at a National Forest Service campground that way, even though the posted ad was a couple of years old.
While these suggestions are certainly not the only ways to work on the road, they will give you a good variety of places to look for a job that includes a full hook up site — sometimes with pay, and other perks, so that you can start living your dream earlier than you might think.
My hubby and I have been living in a travel trailer and working at campgrounds and resorts for the past several years. We decide where we want to go, and look for a job there.