Nine ways travel bloggers can actually make money

Travel vacation background - Beautiful sea tropical island and sky - Phi-Phi island, Krabi Province, Thailand.
Photo credit: Getty

Getting to travel the world a few weeks a year is something most of us spend plenty of time dreaming and scheming about.

Yet the idea of actually making money from these adventures is a concept very few of us give serious thought to. 

But Business Insider has proved it's possible by interviewing an Australian couple who make between US$2000 and $6000 a month while gallivanting around Earth. 

Starting out their backpacking adventures in 2014, Jarryd Salem and Alesha Bradford run travel blog NOMADasaurus, a brand which makes money in nine different ways. 

Business Insider took a look at these different methods and how they enable this couple to maintain their wanderlust dreams.

Affiliate partnerships 

This is where travel bloggers make links to retail websites within their blog. They can then take a cut when readers follow these links and proceed with purchases. 

NOMADasaurus can make between US$100 and US$1000 a month from referrals on travel products such as hotels and insurance. 

Press Trips 

These are trips where travel companies and organisations pay bloggers to experience their services and share it with readers. 

NOMADasaurus charges US$2000 for a press trip which Mr Salem says is a fairly standard amount - some bloggers can make up to $10,000 in a single trip.

But these writers are exceptions to the rule and usually those who've been in the industry since the beginning, he says. 


Sponsored campaigns 

This is an approach similar to traditional advertising where money is made through ad banners or social media posts discussing products and services. 

"A startup will reach out to us and ask if we'll write a post about what they do," Mr Salem says. "Those start as low as $50, but our range is $800-$1500. We usually limit it to one post and maybe a few mentions in other articles. If possible, we always try out the product before we promote it."

Freelance writing 

Mr Salem freelances for a range of travel sites where he can make anywhere from US$50 to US$500. 

Social media promotion

Travel bloggers can be paid to run a company's Instagram or Twitter feed and then post their own photos and thoughts.

Twitter chats in particular give them a chance to hold conversations with readers, something which can earn NOMADasaurus up to $US750. 

Photography and Videography 

Mr Salam and Ms Bradford use photography and videography as a key income stream, with many companies pursuing them to take photos.  

"If it's exclusive photos of their tour or whatever, we charge $1000 a day and they get all the photos," Mr Salem said. "To purchase one photo it's $100-$750 a photo, depending on what they want to use it for."

Digital products 

Ebooks and online courses can provide a form of ongoing income - Mr Salem is currently writing an ebook on travel blogging. This could sell between US$15-$20 per copy. 

Google AdSense

This is a way of getting ads on websites which Google pays bloggers for. 

However this isn't a large income stream with a high volume of traffic required for bloggers to see any serious profit. 

Brand ambassadorships 

Bloggers can be paid to represent companies through social media use. NOMADsaurus are currently in talks with an adventure clothing company which could pay between US$1000 and $2000 per month.