Making Money On The Road?

14 replies
Hey guys
I've been traveling on and off for most of the year with money I earned online.

I'm trying to keep the business alive and growing even though I often have no idea in what country I'll be sleeping in tomorrow night.

It presents a few interesting challenges (ie, i'm trying to focus in a very loud bar in Greenwich which happens to have free Wi Fi at the moment) but overall is great fun.

What are your experiences with keeping your business alive whilst on the move? Do you have any tips?

Cheers,
Nathan Thomas
#making #money #road
  • Profile picture of the author YouDontKnowMe
    With noise, get earbuds and listen to music! Get the kind that seal off sound from the outside completely. Then whether you are into classical, smooth jazz, or headbanging metal, that is all you will hear! No annoying chatter of random folks around you
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  • Profile picture of the author Jay Jennings
    Tip #1 - If you don't have a cable to lock your laptop to a table or something, get one. That way you can run to the bathroom without worrying too much about someone walking off with it.

    When I do that I stick my wireless mouse in my pocket and also don't leave things like external drives hooked up.

    I've seen people use cable and lock their laptop to a table leg -- and all you'd have to do is lift the table up an inch and the cable would slip off, so make sure you've looped it through something. If you're on a pedestal table with nothing to loop through, wind the cable around the leg several times until it just reaches the slot on the laptop.

    Even with a cable I still wouldn't read a book while in there, and there are some places I wouldn't even trust a cable, but most coffee shops with wifi seem to be pretty safe.

    Tip #2 - Get an AT&T Wireless account. For $20 a month you get wifi access at 65K different places around the US, including almost every Starbucks and every McDonald's. It beats running all over the place looking for free wifi.

    Tip #3 - Invest in an offsite backup solution, preferably one that's online so you can backup wherever you find wifi. When you're mobile there are a lot more "things" that can happen to your computer and while replacing one might be a hassle, think about replacing one AND trying to replace all your data, too.

    Jay Jennings
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    • Profile picture of the author EbookLover
      This is a great subject/topic!

      However, I have to ask jay something...

      Originally Posted by Jay Jennings View Post

      Tip #1 - If you don't have a cable to lock your laptop to a table or something, get one. That way you can run to the bathroom without worrying too much about someone walking off with it.

      When I do that I stick my wireless mouse in my pocket and also don't leave things like external drives hooked up.

      I've seen people use cable and lock their laptop to a table leg -- and all you'd have to do is lift the table up an inch and the cable would slip off, so make sure you've looped it through something. If you're on a pedestal table with nothing to loop through, wind the cable around the leg several times until it just reaches the slot on the laptop.

      Even with a cable I still wouldn't read a book while in there, and there are some places I wouldn't even trust a cable, but most coffee shops with wifi seem to be pretty safe.
      Since you already have to disconnect any peripherals and drives, seems to me like it's more of a pain in the arse to chain your laptop to a table or whatever than to just close it up and bring it to the bathroom with you. No?

      And this way at least you can use it if you are going to be in there for a while...LOL.

      Sorry if someone already brought this up. I'm in a hurry
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      • Profile picture of the author Jay Jennings
        Originally Posted by EbookLover View Post

        Since you already have to disconnect any peripherals and drives, seems to me like it's more of a pain in the arse to chain your laptop to a table or whatever than to just close it up and bring it to the bathroom with you. No?
        I usually don't leave any drives attached longer than I need to just for that reason. So most of the time I'm just grabbing the mouse.

        Usually when I'm somewhere like that working I'm going to be there long enough that I know I'll be going to the counter once or twice for drinks and then to the bathroom once or twice -- so when I lock it up at the beginning don't have to worry about it (as much) for the duration of my "work day."

        Plus, if you take it with you someone might take your spot -- and in a *lot* of places there's only one or two tables that have access to a power outlet.

        Jay Jennings
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  • Profile picture of the author Alexander CPA
    #1 Backup everything, you never know when something bad is going to happen, on the road it's even worse, your laptop screen could smash etc. Just back up everything something, then all the important data to a usb stick or something similar.

    2# Have a backup system, perhaps consider investing in a notebook? They are lightweight, usually can fit in your current laptop bag and it means you know your going to secure with a backup.

    3# Most places you can find free wifi.
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  • Profile picture of the author jazbo
    1. Always be prepared in finding free wifi ahead of where you are going.
    2. In your own country always have a blackberry or other phone with push email and ease of reply functionality.
    3. Most importantly, make sure you can access everything you need to via a phone in case of emergencies - ie consider all those passwords you store in roboform but won't be able to access from a phone etc
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  • Profile picture of the author MarkSherris
    yeah just make sure you back up your files really, either on an external harddrive or usb will usually do the trick, and its useful if you have a blackberry or phone will good push email :-)
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  • Profile picture of the author Darryl Smith
    Like you I travel. Presently I am in Thailand for New Year(Songkran) and am unable to fly out due to volcanic cloud in Iceland.
    When I travel here, I use a netbook as it is small enough to carry about in a day bag as well as fitting in a hotel room safe.(It does everything clever I need too.)
    A cheap USB rubber roll up full size keyboard makes life easier when typing a lot.
    As others say, back everything up, I use a waterproof 8GB stick which I find gives pleanty of space and I carry on a small un-noticeable(?) neck chain.
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  • Profile picture of the author markament
    Hey Nathan,

    I've had an online business for 5 years. 2 of them I was traveling through Europe and then later in Asia. It was really difficult for me until I read a great little book called "The Four Hour Work Week." There are some really helpful strategies in there especially for outsourcing work.
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  • Profile picture of the author Ernie Lo
    I dont know how you could do your work in a busy, noisey and populated place. Id be too paranoid that someone will steal my laptop or Ill lose it somehow.

    But sounds like great fun though, travelling around doing IM
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    • Profile picture of the author George185
      It's impressive that you can work in noisy foreign surroundings. I have trouble thinking with the TV on.
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    • Profile picture of the author John Atkins
      Originally Posted by Ernie Lonardo View Post

      I dont know how you could do your work in a busy, noisey and populated place. Id be too paranoid that someone will steal my laptop or Ill lose it somehow.

      But sounds like great fun though, travelling around doing IM
      Yeah it's fun alright, & it can be much more productive if you ask me.

      Working on the same computer in the same room daily can get
      really boring.
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  • Profile picture of the author binko
    In some countries you need to equip yourself with a lot of patience to survive. I stayed in Cambodia for two years using a 128kbps line that "died" 20 times per day but still cost me $80 / month ($750 / month for a 512kbps line). Try to upload a 30MB video on Youtube when that happens, sometimes i succeeded on the 20th or so attempt. Close to a nervous breakdown a couple of times...

    Cambodia is nice though despite flaky and extremely expensive internet.

    I'm now in Vietnam and here they have quite OK free WIFI. Finding places with good and hopefully free WIFI is necessary when you're traveling.

    Difficult with noisy places if you try to record a video...
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  • Originally Posted by keystothemind View Post

    What are your experiences with keeping your business alive whilst on the move? Do you have any tips?

    Cheers,
    Nathan Thomas
    I tried it last summer: 3 months on the road with my laptop while traveling through Asia. I can guarantee you that my productivity sunk. I could only manage the content/sites I had already running, but I failed miserably to create new content and to get new campaigns rolling: too many distractions, too small of a laptop, too shaky internet connection, too little peace, etc.

    I simply couldn't feasibly run my business while on the road.
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