Are you a full-time RVer wanting to make extra cash? Or are you thinking about full-time RVing but can't make the leap unless you make extra money?
I'm writing this article in December. Even in the middle of winter, Googling "making money while traveling" pulled up 350,000 results.
Make money workamping
Workamping is holding a full-time or part-time job while RVing.
You can find employers looking for temporary help by Googling "workamping".
One of the most popular workamping employers is Amazon. You can read about their job opportunities by Googling "CamperForce". and Camp Hosting.
Join Amazon's CamperForce
CamperForce is perfect for people who are full-time RVers and want to make extra money. It's a great way to have a job without a long-term commitment. And if you stay with them for more than 90 days, you can qualify for benefits.
Become A Camp Host
As a camp host, you'll have a free camping spot, usually with full hookups. In exchange, you help manage a campground. If you look you can find paid camp host opportunities, but most are volunteer positions. Usually, there is a commitment of 6 to 9 months.
We've been camp hosts for over 3 years. It's a great way to take a break from camping.
Google "Camp Host" and you'll find a lot of possible employers who need your help.
Sell online from your RV
You can make money from garage sales, estate sales, and buying small storage lockers. We do all three.
We look for small items that we can carry with us. You can sell what you find on eBay and Etsy. You'll need an account with one or both companies. And you'll need a printer. We ship everything in gray plastic bags.
Tip: You will get returns. Because the things we buy and sell are inexpensive, we return the buyer's money. It's easier than working with returns.
Garage and Estate Sales
In any city there are garage and estate sales on most weekends and they are easy to find.
Tip: Name-brand jeans have been good for us. They're easy to find, package, and ship. And we rarely get a return.
TIP: Go to sales during the weekday when you can. You'll still find a lot of people at them, but not as many as during the weekend. Also, group items you want to buy into a pile and then make an offer on the entire group. Sellers will usually give you a great deal on a lot rather than individual items. And watch for bad weather. We've gone to estate sales on rainy days and only found one or two people there. Not only will you have less competition, but the people running the sale get discouraged. They'll often give you a better deal.
Set Up Wholesale Accounts
Setting up a wholesale account without a permanent address isn't easy. But there are companies that don't care where you sell. We've had an account where we buy small bells, for example. We've also sold costume jewelry that we buy from a wholesaler. At our peak, we had over 60 wholesale accounts, so it can be done.
TIP: Be honest with the wholesale company about how you live. If they want a permanent address and you don't have one, they'll shut your account down.
Where To Sell What You've Found Or Bought
Love it or hate it, eBay works. The company and its customers can be frustrating, but its customers buy, and they buy a lot. To date, we have sold over $5,000,000 in products through eBay.
eBay is not difficult to use. Their selling platform is simple and anyone can list there. And as long as you ship fast, the company doesn't care if you are living in an RV.
The key to success on eBay is having competitive prices (cheap). And you'll need plenty of good, clear photos, and accurate descriptions.
TIP: Shipping fast. If you aren't able to or are unwilling to ship within a day or two at the most of the sale, this might not work for you. EBay customers punish slow shippers.
We sell digital products on Etsy. There are endless opportunities. If you have a creative streak, you can sell on Etsy. There are a lot of YouTube videos about digital products. You can learn everything from how to get started to design.
We sell through Amazon's Merch On Demand program
Amazon’s Merch On Demand is perfect for people who want to make money while RVing.
If you aren't familiar with the program, it's simple. You create a design for a t-shirt, sweatshirt, etc., and then put the design on Amazon. If the item sells, Amazon charges the customer, makes the product, and ships it. They even handle the returns. And they pay you a small commission on the sale.
Tip: This isn't as easy as it sounds. At first, you can only list 10 items. As you sell, they allow you to sell more. There are a lot of YouTube videos about Merch On Demand. Watch a couple and you'll see how it works.
We love blogging. If you can write, then blogging should be on your list of money-making opportunities. We use Amazon’s Affiliate Program and Google Adsense to monetize our blogs.
We have websites where we sell to the public. This is a long-term strategy.
If you can imagine it, you can sell it. Running a commercial website operation from an RV isn't difficult. We currently have two websites.
Frequently Asked Questions
What About Selling What We Make?
To make most things, it takes equipment and materials to make things. Because space is at a premium on an RV, we don't make anything for sale. We either buy things from garage sales, etc., or we create digital designs.
How Do You Stock What You Sell?
Everything we sell is small and compact, so we can put everything in a small space. We have a bunkhouse trailer, so we converted part of the bunkhouse to a mini warehouse.
How Do We Ship?
We ship each order in a plastic poly mailer. You can buy them on Amazon or eBay. They are lightweight and don’t take up much room. And they are hard to tear open, so we rarely have anything lost in shipment.
How Do You Connect To The Internet?
We use our phone's mobile hotspots for internet connectivity. We print our packing slips and labels at the kitchen table. We have a laptop and a small Brother printer that take up a small amount of space.
What About Drop Shipping?
We have drop-shipped products in the past, but we don’t like it. Customers are more demanding than in the past. And they want the item they've ordered shipped immediately. Not all dropshipping companies feel our urgency and some don’t do a good job of keeping their inventory up.
If you can find a good and reliable drop shipper, it can work. We’ve done it, but it isn’t our preferred way of doing our business.
It isn't necessary to have dozens of money-making ideas. All that's needed are a few good ideas that you repeat over and over.