How to Become a Travelpreneur with Tips and Resources

Are you wondering how to become a travelpreneur and create a business based on your love of travel? This article is for you! We will explore what a travelpreneur is and some different travelpreneur jobs. Then we will share some of the first steps to launching a travel business. We will follow with some of  the exciting benefits of this lifestyle.

Being a travelpreneur is also a lot of hard work so I will also share the biggest challenges because it definitely isn’t for everyone. If you think it looks like a good match for you, you will find all of my favorite resources throughout the article so you can get started today.

As the founder of Trip Scholars, I am a travelpreneur myself. My vision for helping people learn more through travel encompasses many of the jobs we will discuss below, so I have firsthand experience and useful tips for people just getting started. I also coach travelers with their long-term travel dreams and help aspiring travelpreneurs create this lifestyle for themselves. I am a lifelong learner and avid researcher so I have taken the time to find the best resources to save you time and money as you launch.

This post may contain affiliate links which means Trip Scholars may make a small commission (at no extra cost to you) if you make a purchase.  As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.  Read more here. Thanks for your support!

Travelpreneur Meaning

First, what exactly is a travelpreneur? It is a new word and not yet recognized in established dictionaries. But, a quick search on the internet will give you volumes of search results and there are over 500,000 travelpreneur hashtags on Instagram. Chances are, the term will be formally recognized soon. 

The word is a portmanteau of travel and entrepreneur. In this article we will be using the Wikipedia/Wiktionary definition: An entrepreneur in the field of travel services. You will also find other interpretations like being an entrepreneur (in any industry) who also loves to travel or is nomadic. But in this article, we will be talking specifically about building your own business based on travel. 

Erica Forrest, the author typing on a computer with the beach an ocean in the distance, illustrating life as a travelprenuer
The author working from a beachfront room on Tortola in the British Virgin Islands.

Travelpreneur Jobs

There are many travelpreneur jobs to choose from. Lots of people creating this lifestyle have multiple income streams and do more than one of these. For example, you will find people who start as a travel blogger, become a travel advisor or coach to better support their growing audience, and eventually lead their own tours as people let them know they would love to join them on their travels. Read through some of these travelpreneur jobs to see what might be a good match for you.

Travel Blogger

Imagine writing about your journeys, sharing tips and guidance about travel, and inspiring others to explore the world. That’s the essence of being a travel blogger. 

This role involves crafting engaging blog posts, guides, reviews, and personal anecdotes about your travels, supplemented with captivating photos and practical tips. 

It’s a great match for those with a love of writing, an apptitude for storytelling, and a thirst for exploration. Successful travel bloggers are curious, persistent, and adept at digital marketing and SEO.

Recommendation: She Knows SEO

She Knows SEO is consistently recommended as the top training for travel bloggers learning SEO. I have taken the 6 Months to 50K Sessions course and found it both engaging and packed full of actionable steps. If you are just getting started with travel blogging the more comprehensive SEO Roadmap is an even better bet if you can afford the investment. Students in the program are becoming profitable much faster than average. 

Another course consistently recommended in  many travelpreneur communities is Scale Your Travel Blog.  Students frequently report great success and very supportive instruction and community. I have not personally taken this class but have learned some great ideas from them and I plan to take this course in the future. 

Early on I took The Business of Travel Blogging course with Nomadic Matt, but it is no longer offered. 

Travel Advisor 

Travel advisors are the architects of dream trips, offering personalized travel planning services to clients. They research destinations, curate itineraries, book accommodations, and arrange tours and activities. 

If you’re detail-oriented, love researching and planning, and enjoy making others’ travel dreams come true, this could be the job for you. 

Successful travel advisors are knowledgeable, resourceful, and possess excellent customer service skills, ensuring clients have unforgettable travel experiences. The most profitable advisors often focus on high end trips, group trips, cruises, and resorts.

Travel Coach

Travel coaching blends the art of travel with personal development, helping clients overcome fears, set travel goals, and enrich their lives through travel. A travel coach is part guide, part motivator, and part travel expert. 

This role suits empathetic, insightful individuals passionate about personal growth and travel’s transformative power. To thrive, you’ll need strong coaching skills, deep travel knowledge, and the ability to inspire and empower others.

Recommendation: The Travel Coach Certification Program

This is the only ICF certified program in the world for travel coaches and the one I earned my  certification through. I wish I had started with this program sooner in my journey as a travelpreneur since students are highly supported in building a whole travel based business and not just the skills needed for effective travel coaching. There is a strong community, ongoing support after certification, and a heavy emphasis on service, values, and meaningful travel. 
Erica Forrest, the author and travelpreneur behind a microphone and with headphones on in front of a bookshelf.
The author presenting online

Travel Vlogger

Travel vlogging is all about bringing destinations to life through video. As a travel vlogger, you’ll create captivating content that showcases destinations, cultures, cuisines, and adventures, sharing them on platforms like YouTube or Instagram. 

This job is perfect for outgoing individuals who are comfortable in front of the camera and have a keen eye for visual storytelling. Skills in video editing, content planning, and social media engagement are key to building a loyal audience that is inspired and educated by your content.

Travel Podcaster

Travel Podcasters are the voices behind the mic, bringing the world to listeners through engaging audio content. Perfect for storytellers with a passion for exploration and conversation, this role involves creating episodes that delve into travel tales, tips, cultural insights, and interviews with guests around the world. 

This job is ideal for those with a passion for storytelling, audio editing, and an insatiable curiosity about the world. It requires a good voice, research skills, and the ability to engage listeners. If you plan to interview others, it also requires excellent listening skills and a genuine curiosity about others. Successful podcasters are communicative, creative, and consistent, building a community of like-minded wanderers. If you dream of sharing your adventures and connecting with fellow travelers on a deeper level, this could be for you.

Recommendation: Start as a Podcast Guest

If you are thinking of launching a travel podcast one of the best things you can do is be a guest on other people's podcasts first. You will learn a lot and improve your ability to inform, entertain, and inspire. You will need to start with a one sheet (tip: make it with the free version of Canva). You also often need an established online presence before being accepted as a guest. Podcast Guest Collaboration Community and Professional Podcast Guests are two active and supportive groups to find guest opportunities.

Travel Podcast Equipment

Tour Operator or Host

This role involves creating and leading tours, whether they’re local day trips, retreats, or multi-week international excursions. As a tour operator or host, you’ll design unique travel experiences, manage logistics, and guide groups on their adventures. 

It’s ideal for those who love interacting with people, and sharing their passion for places. To be successful, you’ll need excellent organizational skills, a talent for storytelling, and a deep understanding of the destinations you’re showcasing.

Recommendation: TravelKinetics

I recently started a training with the founder of this company and highly recommend learning from her. There are multiple offerings for tour hosts including Global Guide Alliance, Tourprener, and private coaching. She is a leading force in modernizing the tour industry and is also in charge of trips at Atlas Obscura.

Check out the free group Tourpreneur for Tour Operators/Tour Professionals.

Online Travel Content Creator

Online Travel Content Creators craft e-books, courses, and guides, turning their travel expertise into valuable resources. By identifying travelers’ needs and packaging insights into engaging digital products, you empower others to experience richer journeys. 

It is perfect for those with an aptitude for research, writing, and digital design. This role demands creativity, technical skills, and a passion for sharing knowledge. 

Travel Influencer

In the world of social media, travel influencers inspire and educate their audiences about travel destinations around the world. You will share your travel experiences, tips, and stunning visuals on Instagram, TikTok, Facebook, and beyond.

This role is tailor-made for charismatic individuals who have a talent for photography, videography, and engaging storytelling. The essence of being a successful travel influencer is a genuine love of travel and the ability to connect with and grow your audience. You’ll need to master the art of social media strategy, content creation, and eventually, build relationships with brands for collaborations. 

Travel Writer

Travel writing allows you to craft stories and articles for magazines, websites, publications, or your own books. It’s about capturing the essence of destinations, cultures, and experiences through words. 

It is ideal for independent spirits with a love for writing and a gift for educating and inspiring readers. To excel, you’ll need excellent writing skills, discipline to meet deadlines, and the persistence to pitch your work to editors consistently or successfully self publish. 

Travel Photographer

With a lens in hand, travel photographers capture the world’s beauty, diversity, and moments of wonder. This job entails shooting photos for clients, selling images as stock photography, or working on personal projects. 

It suits visually artistic individuals with a keen eye for composition and storytelling through images. Essential skills include photography expertise, creativity, and the business savvy to market your work and manage freelance projects.

The author and travelpreneur, Erica Forrest holding a camera in front of the dry stacked monk dwellings on the island of Skellig Michael in Ireland.
Taking photos is part of the job!

Travelpreneur MLM

There are also some businesses who have included the term travelpreneur in the name of their company. These are sometimes recognized as MLM (Multi Level Marketing) businesses. This post will not be reviewing any of these specific businesses. If you are interested in working with any of them, I encourage you to do plenty of research first.

Challenges of a Travelpreneur Lifestyle

The greatest challenges to being a travelpreneur are the same as they are for any entrepreneurial venture. There is no guaranteed income and it can take years of dedicated hard work before your business becomes profitable. 

The truth is that being a successful travelpreneur is a lot of hard work. In fact, depending on the study, it can take bloggers 6-12 months to start earning any income at all. Only about half of all small business ventures survive over five years

Because of this, many travelpreneurs need to already have savings or another source of income while getting started. They also need to be psychologically prepared to work hard on a daily basis without expecting a significant reward for months or years. 

Of course there are plenty of examples of people who are financially successful much sooner, especially if they already have a related background or they get the right training at the beginning. But this is not the norm and aspiring travelpreneurs should be aware of this before they start. If you decide to become a travelpreneur, I hope you can find success more quickly using some of the resources in this article.

An additional challenge that people dreaming of this lifestyle should consider is that it means you will often be working while traveling. That might sound obvious, but when many of our past trips have been relaxing, it can be surprising how different trips can become. 

For example, established bloggers, influencers, and advisors can take FAM trips (Familiarity Trips) for free or at greatly reduced rates. While on these trips they are gathering information, photos, videos, and often meeting with owners, directors, and the staff from different establishments so that they can create compelling and helpful content to share with their readers or clients about the destinations.

The author, Erica Forrest surrounded by glacial carved land, lakes, and glaciers in Norway.
The author enjoying life as a travelpreneur

Benefits of a Travelpreneur Lifestyle

The most obvious benefit to being a travelpreneur is that you can travel more! Most of these jobs are location independent so you can earn an income from anywhere. Additionally, many of them pay you specifically to travel or allow you to have travel experiences that are free, tax deductible, or at greatly reduced costs.

This ability to intentionally craft a meaningful lifestyle that allows you to travel long-term and deeply immerse yourself in your travel experiences can not be underestimated.

Some travelpreneurs are nomadic while others choose to keep a homebase and travel some of the time. With these jobs, you get to decide and can change your lifestyle based on your fluctuating needs and desires.

Another important benefit is that you can support and promote travel in alignment with your values. As an entrepreneur, you get to build a business based on your values with a focus on serving the audience of your choosing. I built Trip Scholars on values that promote meaningful, educational, and sustainable travel. You can do your own personal version of that too.

First Steps to Becoming a Travelpreneur

  1. The first step is to do a lot of self-reflection. Ask yourself these questions:
  • What do I believe about travel that I want to promote in the world?
  • What are my strengths that I bring to this endeavor? 
  • What problems exist in travel that I can help solve?
  • Who can benefit from what I want to offer? 
  • How am I different? How can I be unique and authentic in the industry? 
  • What do I want my lifestyle to be like now? In the future?
  • How much time can I commit to being a travelpreneur now? In the future?
  • How quickly do I want/need to make money from this business?
  • How much money can I invest in this endeavor? 
  1.  Look at the travelpreneur job ideas shared earlier in this article and see which ones match well to your answers in step one.
  1. Research! See where there are gaps in the market that you can fill. Learn what other people are doing in the field to learn more about your preferences. Pay attention to the recommendations of those who have been doing this for a while.
  1. Create a business plan and get feedback from a trusted mentor.
  1. Get out there and start sharing! 
The author, Erica Forrest with her daughter on a canal bridge in Amsterdam with a pink floral decorated bike, canal boats, and old buildings in the background.
The author sharing the travelpreneur life with family

Six Things Travelpreneurs Wish They Had Done Sooner

I am in multiple communities for different types of travelpreneurs and there are six things I hear repeatedly about what we all wish we had done sooner. I hope to help save you years of frustration and get your business off to a great start.

1. Start now

You don’t have to launch a website or invest money in the beginning, but get started today exploring your options and putting your ideas out into the world. Whether you do this on social media or in conversations, you will start to find your voice, your business values, and learn what resonates. You also might find that you don’t actually like being an entrepreneur and would rather find other ways to travel. (There are plenty– so don’t worry if you decide this isn’t for you!) This step is so important that I will cover it in full below.

2. Treat it like a business, not a hobby

You undoubtedly already have many responsibilities, but to be successful as a travelpreneur, you need to prioritize this as a business. That means adding it to your calendar and committing to work on it on a regular basis. Give yourself goals and deadlines and do regular check-ins. Consider getting an accountability buddy or coach who can cheer you on, hold you accountable to the goals you set for yourself, and help you pivot as you grow.

3. Get Training and Find Mentors

Consider investing in some of the excellent courses, trainings, and certifications available to help you grow in different aspects of your business. You can also learn an enormous amount for free through books, podcasts, videos, summits, and websites. 

Keep in mind that free versions might not be presented in a comprehensive and linear way. When using a hodgepodge approach you will also encounter contradictory ideas and advice shared by people without a proven track record themselves. Finally, there are also a lot of sub-par trainings created by people who excel more at marketing than the actual subject matter they are teaching, so do your research before investing or following someone’s advice.

If money is tight, many of the established trainings and classes I mention in this article have free resources and Facebook communities that you can start learning from today. You can slowly add paid classes and tools over time.

4. Join Communities

There are valuable online communities that you can learn from and get support within. You will usually need to have an established site or social media presence for your business before being accepted into most of them. But once your travelpreneur endeavor has a solid online presence, seek out communities. Use these to help build friendships, collaborate, network, and find the best conferences and learning opportunities.  

Recommendation: Wanderful

This is a  travel community that has been a great help to me-- and a lot of fun! There are membership levels for content creators and small business owners that come with lots of opportunities for collaboration, connection, training, and in-person events like WITS (Women In Travel Summit). I am such a fan that I am the Director for the chapter in Seattle, Washington! It is an inclusive community for anyone supporting women. They also offer scholarships if cost prevents you from participating.

5. Start Your Email List

Next to your body of work and what you learn, your email list is one of the most important things you can have as an entrepreneur. Your subscribers are the people who actually want to learn from you and appreciate what you have to share. 

When people start enjoying your content– whether through your blog, podcast, or social media– if they find it valuable, you should try to keep them in your world. Getting set up with an email provider, creating an opt-in, and crafting your emails is something that can take a significant investment of time, so many travelpreneurs put it off for months or years. I highly recommend you do this shortly after establishing your business’s online presence. 

Over time you will share your best content and advice with your subscribers, nurturing authentic relationships with them. If you eventually decide to publish a book, launch a course, or offer new services, these are the people who will likely benefit the most from it. They already know, like, and trust you. They are your ideal clients. You won’t be chasing sales, instead you will be providing something valuable that people are happy and even excited to pay for because you made it for them.

Recommendation: Amy Porterfield's Subscribed Bootcamp

If you have been thinking of starting a business, you might have come across Amy Porterfield and her NYT bestselling book, Two Weeks Notice. Once a year in February she offers a very affordable short class to get your email list started called Subscribed. It's packed with value and worth taking. It is also an exceptionally well designed pitch to encourage you to sign up for her more extensive (and expensive!) courses, so prepare to be tempted. 
Recommendation: Liz Wilcox

If you are looking for a relaxed and authentic approach to figuring out your email, check out Liz Wilcox. I haven't paid for any of her trainings, but I have seen her present multiple times and she is next on my list of people to learn from. The main reason I want to learn from her is because the small business owners who send me emails that I actually look forward to reading and get a lot of value from have been her students. I want my own subscribers to get  as much value and enjoyment from the newsletters that I send them.

Learn SEO

Search Engine Optimization is much more important than many new travelpreneurs realize and most established business owners wish they learned about it much sooner. Yes, at the beginning of starting your business you will feel overwhelmed learning new tech, creating a business plan, establishing your online presence and so much more. But I urge you to learn SEO as early in your journey as possible.  

SEO is the science and art of improving your visibility on the internet. You want to make it easy for the people you serve to both find you, and get what they need. You will do this by creating high-quality and relevant content with an excellent user experience. 

Even if you create incredible content, without SEO, people may never find you. 

I promise, it really isn’t as hard as it seems and once you understand it, you will have a much easier time knowing what your audience actually needs and wants. This will empower you to support your travelpreneur lifestyle by genuinely supporting your audience. SEO is important for travelpreneurs outside of blogging too– if you have an online business presence of any kind, it is a valuable skill.

The longer you wait to learn SEO, the more time  and energy you will need to go back and fix things. Take it from me, I am still cleaning up my early posts! These early articles have a lot of great content and are very helpful, but they will never show up in search results until I rewrite them with my new SEO strategy in mind.

Don’t plan to wait until you have a successful business to learn SEO, it doesn’t work that way. Learn SEO early, you will be so glad that you did!

Recommendation: She Knows SEO

She Knows SEO is consistently recommended as the top training for travel bloggers learning SEO. I have taken the 6 Months to 50K Sessions course and found it both engaging and packed full of actionable steps. If you are just getting started with travel blogging the more comprehensive SEO Roadmap is an even better bet if you can afford the investment. Students in the program are becoming profitable much faster than average. 

I took my original SEO training with Digital Nomad Wannabe. It was excellent but the course I took is no longer being offered. You can still learn from her super helpful Facebook Group and podcast. 

I have also completed the free training through Yoast Academy. If you can't afford to invest in your education right now, this is a great first step. You will learn a lot about general SEO, just without a lot of depth or focus on earning money.
Recommendation: Key Search

To learn and implement your SEO strategy, you will need a tool to find keywords. I'm a big fan of Key Search. Now that I have learned a lot about SEO, I use Key Search and am able to get most of my new articles on the first page of Google. There are many keyword tools out there, but Key Search costs a small fraction of the other major players and has almost as many features. It is also frequently the top recommendation from many others in the industry. You can test it out with their free trial.

What Not to Do When Starting as a Travelpreneur

Don’t Make Things Perfect

Start where you are, use what you have, and learn as you go. The path to success is paved with adjustments, not perfection. Let your passion and adaptability be your guide, not the elusive quest for the perfect beginning. Launch your ideas into the world even if they’re not polished to perfection. Feedback and real-world experiences are invaluable, offering lessons no amount of planning can provide.

Many new entrepreneurs spend hours choosing the right font, colors, and layout or years building courses without actually teaching or coaching real people first. Eventually these things may be important, but at the beginning it is much more valuable to get your ideas out into the world, interact with real people, and be imperfect. 

As a long time educator with a passion for learning, I love the Miss Frizzle quote, “Take chances, make mistakes, and get messy!” 

Don’t Make It About You

In the early stages of a travelpreneur journey, people often focus too heavily on personal narratives and adventures, neglecting the needs and interests of their audience. This approach, while rich in personal enthusiasm and passion, limits our ability to connect meaningfully and provide tangible value. 

Recognize how important it is to shift your focus from self to service. Storytelling is integral to the human experience and including your own travel stories will probably be a fundamental part of building your business. But it is crucial to adapt your approach to center on how your experiences can educate, inspire, or solve problems for your audience. A great thing to always ask yourself as a travelpreneur is, “how can this help my audience?”

Airplane window view of Mount Rainier and the surrounding Cascade Mountains in Washington state.
The office view on a good day!

Why Travelers Make Great Entrepreneurs

Travelers and entrepreneurs share a unique set of traits that equip them with a distinct advantage in the business world.

Curiosity and Lifelong Learning

A hallmark of avid travelers is their insatiable curiosity and desire to learn about new places, cultures, and experiences. This lifelong learning mindset is crucial for entrepreneurs, who must continually research and acquire new knowledge and skills.

Passion and Perseverance

A deep passion for exploration drives travelers to persist through challenging journeys. Similarly, successful entrepreneurs are driven by a passion for their venture, persevering through setbacks and failures with an unwavering commitment to their vision.

Adaptability

Travelers, much like entrepreneurs, thrive in changing environments. They’re adept at navigating unfamiliar territories, adjusting to new cultures, and overcoming unexpected challenges. This adaptability is crucial in entrepreneurship, where market trends, consumer needs, and technology evolve rapidly.

Problem-Solving Skills

Encountering and solving problems is a daily routine for travelers, whether it’s dealing with language barriers, finding transportation, or managing a budget. These problem-solving skills are directly transferable to entrepreneurship, where identifying issues, brainstorming solutions, and implementing strategies are key to success.

Creativity and Innovation

Travel inspires creativity, exposing individuals to diverse ways of thinking and living. This exposure broadens perspectives, fostering innovative thinking in entrepreneurs. They learn to approach business challenges creatively, finding unique solutions that set them apart from competitors.

Risk-Taking

Traveling involves a certain degree of risk and uncertainty. Travelers who embrace these risks develop a comfort with uncertainty that’s essential for entrepreneurs, who must often make decisions based on incomplete information and take calculated risks to capitalize on new opportunities.

Networking and Communication Skills

Travelers frequently meet new people, building networks across different cultures and backgrounds. This skill in building relationships and communicating effectively is invaluable for entrepreneurs, who rely on networking to find partners, customers, and mentors.

Yellowstone River and waterfall running through the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone with blue sky and white clouds above.
Teaching people about some of the most extraordinary places in the world is part of the job

When Should I Start as a Travelpreneur?

Many people wonder when they should begin their journey as a travelpreneur. If this is a pursuit you are interested in, my advice is to start now. There are many reasons that today is the day to begin. 

As  mentioned above, it can take months or years before you start to earn an income and become profitable. In this industry, profitable may sometimes mean covered travel instead of money– but still profitable in some way. If you are planning to use these income streams to fund a worldschooling, retirement, or other exciting adventure in your future, get started before that chapter begins.

Whether you are a student, stay-at-home parent, are working nomadically for someone else, or still have a day job– making time to start your travelpreneur endeavor now allows you to time learn more new skills than you ever knew you could. 

No matter what your current powerhouse skill set is, being a solopreneur means that you are going to be out of your comfort zone on a daily basis for a while. In most jobs we know we have landed well when we are surrounded with a team of people around us who do many things better than we do. But as a solopreneur, you’ll likely be doing all of them yourself, at least for a while. Starting early also allows you to make thousands of inevitable mistakes without the risks being too high. 

Additionally, you can take this time to  find your voice and really clarify your mission and your why behind your business. You will have time to let people know what you are doing as you naturally build your audience. You will be able to listen to them and find out what they actually need and want and eventually, truly serve them. 

Remember, everyone starts from the beginning. Every blog has a first post, every social media account starts at zero, every writer gets published for the first time. Today is the day to start, you can only grow from here!

The author, Erica Forrest, in Antelope Canyon X in Arizona, USA. Woman with a camera looking up to towards the sky in a dramatic orange and yellow slot canyon.

Becoming a Travelpreneur

Are you interested in becoming a travelpreneur yourself? What questions do you still have? If you are already a travelpreneur, what tips and advice do you have for those who are just getting started? I’d love to hear in the comments!

Like It? Pin It!

Leave a Comment

Almost there...

Get Your Free Gifts