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I’ve been asked many times how I afford to do so much traveling. I think the obvious answer here is to save money. Every extra dime. But when that’s not enough, there are a ton of other things you can do. I like to think of them as Side Hustles. Except I can do them from the comfort of my couch while watching TV. Or my bed when I’m in my pajamas. And the awesome thing is, you can do it too. So today I’m going to share the wealth and give you the 12 ways I earn extra money to fund my travels!
I love Swagbucks. Seriously, there are so many ways to earn some extra money with this website. Swagbucks is a research/marketing tool for a LOT of companies. They offer surveys, polls, videos to watch, special offers, shopping, coupons, games, and the list goes on. When you complete any of these things they reward you with Swagbucks (points) that you can redeem for CASH or gift cards. There are a ton of different gift cards you can redeem your Swagbucks for. My favorite is Amazon or sometimes I choose the PayPal option and have cash deposited into my account. They also have gift cards to various airlines and hotels.com. In the past couple of years I’ve earned 10,758 Swagbucks with not much effort. That is roughly $107. If you want to sign up, click here. And if you use that link, you’ll be helping me out by giving me a referral bonus.
This is one of my favorite ways to earn money because it adds up quickly and I don’t have to do anything I don’t already do. Cross Media Panel is run by Google and it uses a Chrome Extension or an app to basically record what websites you visit. I figure Big Brother can already see what websites I go to so why not get paid for it? I make $2-$3 a week surfing the internet on my computer, phone, and tablet. Then once I reach a certain threshold, I can redeem my rewards for gift cards. Since I signed up back in 2014, I’ve earned $386.50 (their payout used to be smaller). They aren’t always accepting new members but you can sign up here.
Achievemint is pretty awesome. If you have a FitBit or other fitness device, then this one is for you. All you need to do is sign up for an account, connect your device, and then forget about it. Okay, you do have to sync your FitBit to the app but seriously, it’s that easy. Achievemint will reward you with points for your steps and other things like if you record your water intake, meals, sleep, and weight. After you reach 10,000 points (and they keep record of everything for you), you can redeem it for $10, which they will directly deposit into your account. I flipping love it. Sign up with my referral link here and we both earn 250 bonus points!
Walgreens doesn’t give you cash per se but they do offer rewards within their own store. Sign up for an account or a rewards card in store (which a lot of people probably already have) and then just like with Achievemint, you just need to connect it to your FitBit or other fitness device. You get points for your steps and then they turn into Walgreens store rewards, which work like cash. So if there is an item I need from the pharmacy or a hygiene item, etc, I can use my Walgreens rewards and the money I normally would have spent on that item goes into my savings! Note that they do have other ways of earning points, but attaching my FitBit to my account is the only way I use this program. Sign up here.
I love the app for Ibotta. It is free to download to your phone and you can get money back for buying food you were already going to buy. Kind of like coupons, except they call them Rebates, because you actually get cash back instead of just lowering your total price. So basically you find the rebates you want to redeem on the app. After you finish shopping you take a photo of the receipt to prove you did buy the products and then sometimes you have to scan the UPC barcode. Within 24 hours they will email you to tell you the money was deposited into your account. That’s it! If you sign up using my link here I will earn a bonus.
6.) Facebook Selling Groups/Selling Apps
I have not had any success in the Facebook Selling Groups but I have used the app LetGo and seen good things from that. If you have anything extra lying around that you don’t need or want list it on one of these groups and see if anyone else does. You can meet up some place public, like a gas station or a police station, and make a sale in cold hard cash. If you have a bunch of stuff to get rid of, this adds up fast.
7.) Quest Mind Share
This is a survey company but it’s completely legit. They are pretty good about finding surveys that you would qualify for so you aren’t getting a ton of spam. And the surveys aren’t crazy long either. The payout isn’t huge because of that but it’s something while you are sitting there watching TV. For instance, yesterday I took a survey that took me 2 minutes and I got $0.50 for it. I signed up a year ago and frankly haven’t committed much time to it at all so I’ve only earned $14.13 through them. However, due to my involvement with them, I was contacted by a research company doing a survey for a local radio station in which I had to do a very extensive survey listening to music and rating it. I was contacted twice and I made $60 both times I took the survey for a total of $120. There’s no referral bonus but you can sign up here.
You had to know this was going to be included right? Everyone has seen the commercials so I’m sure everyone knows what this is. You shop online, you get money back. I use the Chrome extension because it reminds me when a website I’m shopping on is a participant. You activate the link and bam, you get money back. I forget to activate the link ALL THE TIME so I’ve missed out on a bunch of opportunity but I’ve still managed to earn $63.44 over my account’s lifetime. Sign up here with my referral link and I can get a bonus!
So this one doesn’t give you cash back at all and it is only good if you have a child in diapers. But if you sign up online and redeem the codes on Pampers brand items (like diapers, wipes, training pants) then you can redeem your points for stuff! They offer a lot of toys but they also offer rewards with their partner Shutterfly. I LOOOOOVE Shutterfly. The last few years I have gotten photo Christmas cards and I haven’t paid for ANY of them. That’s saving a lot of money right? Money that I can be putting into a savings account. And I still have enough points stocked away for a few Christmases to come. Sign up here.
Now we are getting to the really big ones. The ones that can earn the big money. I started this blog because I love to travel and I love to write. But I also know that a lot of people make money blogging. So I thought “Self, why not get paid to do TWO things you love to do?” And NowViewingTheWorld.com was created. It’s my hope and dream that I can do just that – get paid to travel and write about it. That’s where you come in – by reading and sharing my blog. And then if you think that’s pretty awesome, you can do the same thing too. Which means you can also earn money to travel by writing a blog.
A couple of years ago I started my own Etsy shop called Mrs. Sara G Designs where I make and sell custom invitations, cards, paper goods, and party supplies. Then I was able to add custom vinyl decor and t-shirts as well. My Etsy store is what helped fund quite a bit of my trip to London. If you are creative and can make, literally anything, there’s probably a market for it and you can own your own shop too!
Many many moons ago I created my own YouTube channel, but I wasn’t serious about it at all. I’ve recently started getting into it more and more and loving it. But then YouTube started cracking down on people who were abusing the system (which is good!) and now it takes a good bit of time before beginners can actually make any money (which is bad, for me, since I’m really just starting out). Now, in order to get a custom URL you need 100 subscribers – so subscribe to my channel everyone! And before you can start making money you need 10,000 views. I’ll be honest, I’m only around 2300 views. So check out my vlogs. I’ll be sure to film my beach/Canada/Portland trips that are coming up.
Oh what, I didn’t tell you about Portland? I guess you’ll have to stick around for that.
In the meantime, here’s my newest vlog that I did describing exactly what you just read:
If you liked these ideas, don’t forget to share them!