RVing for both short and full-time travel is more popular than ever, but is there a way to combine making money while still enjoying camping trips?
The good news is plenty of remote or mobile jobs are ideal for RV life, and I put the top choices and tips on how to work from your RV right here.
As a full-time remote-working RVer for over seven years, I know the importance of making money on the road, especially for those who aren’t retired or have an alternative income stream.
Being able to pay your bills and enjoy a life of freedom traveling across our beautiful country is the American dream, and it’s well within your reach using the helpful tips below!
What Do Full-Time RVers Do for Work?
Most full-time RVers who work have jobs that fall into these three categories:
- Remote jobs through a corporation or business
Let’s dive deeper into each category and how these jobs blend with the RV life.
Workamping for RV Owners
Within this RV job category, there are two options.
The first option is working at a private campground. Most RVers choose a six-month contract and often extend their stay if they enjoy the job or the location.
State and National park campgrounds also hire workampers, but the contract length is usually three or four months long.
Work hour requirements can run from as low as 12 hours per week up to 40+ hours.
The second option is non-campground workamping positions. These jobs will offer convenient RV parking spaces and hookups but require employees to work their shift elsewhere.
Pros and Cons of Workamping
Choosing to work from your RV by workamping has these benefits and disadvantages to consider:
- Reduces or eliminates campsite fee
- Many offer cash payment after a set number of work hours
- No commute (and fuel expense)
- Most cover your electric, water, Wi-Fi, and cable connections
- Lots of free food and entertainment
- Most receive a standard W-2 which simplifies taxes
- Must secure a position many months in advance
- Campgrounds pay poorly, usually minimum wage
- Most offer no benefits
- Easy access to campground guests leads to off-hours interruptions
- Many workamping RV sites are the worst in the park
- Not fulfilling your contract can blacklist you from similar jobs
Remote Jobs Through a Corporation or Business
While workamping, I’ve met many campground guests who work remotely through a large business either part-time during short camping trips or full-time which allows them to RV all year.
With the current world health crisis, more jobs now have a remote-work option that many RVers can take advantage of while traveling.
The most significant difference I see in this RV work is that the focus is more on the job over the RVing experience.
Work-hour requirements for employees are often the normal 9-5, which can ruin plans for a day hike or other activity.
Some workers need to make in-person appearances at headquarters or the office every few months and must plan their RV life around that schedule.
Pros and Cons of Remote Jobs
Choosing to work from your RV remotely has these benefits and disadvantages to consider:
- Pay is typically higher and reliable
- Most offer health insurance and 401K
- Can work from just about anywhere
- Allows continual exposure to industry peers
- You receive a W-2, making taxes easier
- Most require a solid internet connection
- Working hours are more structured
- Must pay full price at campgrounds
- Need to make room inside the RV for an office
Working Freelance Jobs From Your RV
I find that many RVers love the flexibility and freedom freelance jobs provide.
Working only when you need to or feel like it opens up more time to explore local sights and enjoy the camping experience.
Hours for an RV freelancer can range dramatically. Someone needing to hit budget goals may need to work 80 hours a week, while others may make enough income putting in 5-10 hours weekly.
Depending on your job, you may only need a laptop or mobile phone to complete work, or you may need lots of supplies or space to create a product to sell.
With so many freelancing job options, which I discuss later on, many RVers find this type of work the best fit to make money while on the road.
Pros and Cons of RV Freelance Jobs
Choosing to freelance from your RV has these benefits and disadvantages:
- Freedom to set your own hours and wage
- More time to enjoy local sights
- Can turn a fun hobby into an income source
- Can often complete work without internet
- Paychecks can be sporadic/unreliable
- Must pay full price at campgrounds
- Must set aside a portion of income for taxes
Top Ways to Earn Money Working From Your RV
According to the RV Industry Association, over one million Americans live full-time in a motorhome, travel trailer, or truck camper with over three-quarters doing some type of mobile job for income.
These statistics show that being able to sustain an income stream while enjoying the perks of full or part-time RVing is possible.
Next, I detail the best jobs to earn money from your RV and how to find them.
Become a Campground Workamper
Workamping is an ideal blend of work and the RV lifestyle. It also gives you insight into how campgrounds function, which is very enlightening.
Job positions at private campgrounds include:
- Activities Director
Office staff handle reservations, phone calls, and camp store sales, usually within a climate-controlled building.
Maintenance staff is outdoors taking care of campsite clean-up and repair, customer service, swimming pool care, propane fills, parking assistance, and general park beautification.
Housekeepers maintain clean bathrooms, showers, cabins, community buildings, and pool areas.
Management handles hiring, bookkeeping, scheduling, paychecks, park projects, and customer complaints or issues.
The Activities Director arranges games, excursions, potluck meals, dances, crafts, and other fun things to keep campground guests occupied.
State and National Parks often refer to their workampers as “camp hosts.” These workers can take on a variety of jobs, such as:
- Onsite campground host
- Ranger work
- Field research
- Park maintenance
- Gift shop clerk
- Educational program staff
- Gate entry staff
Where to Find Workamping Positions
Paying the small fee some sites charge is worth the up-to-date job listings and information on who to contact at each park.
For State or National Park campgrounds, look into CampHost.org or contact specific parks directly and inquire about current or upcoming open positions.
INSIDER TIPS: Have a short single or “couples” resume and current pictures of yourself and your RV handy to email. All campgrounds ask for this information and often toss applications if you don’t include it.
Apply for positions as early as possible, at least three to six months ahead. For winter gigs in the south or high-tourist areas, a year or more in advance is necessary to snag a position.
Take on a housekeeping position if you need to get your foot in the door, as these jobs are the least desirable.
Become a Seasonal or Gig Workamper
Other typical workamping jobs RVers take on are seasonal or gig jobs.
Most of this employment runs for short spans and revolves around the holidays, jobs harvesting crops, or working security gates at remote oil fields or industrial facilities.
Where to Find Seasonal Workamping Positions
Contact the Amazon CamperForce website for details on how to apply for jobs and which locations and time frames are available.
Be aware that you’ll usually have a very short span to commit to CamperForce jobs. There are many applicants, and positions fill quickly.
Sugar Beet Harvest
If you can swing 10-14 days of possibly backbreaking work, the sugar beet harvest in Montana, Minnesota, or North Dakota is another popular RV job.
During the duration of the harvest, you’ll get a free full-hookup campsite. At the end, an RVing couple will leave with a hefty paycheck.
Security / Gate Guard
Security and gate-guard positions are perfect for RV couples who prefer to work and camp in solitude.
Many locations are oil fields or industrial complexes in Texas or out west that provide a full-hookup RV campsite during your contract’s duration.
RV Remote Telecommuting Jobs
If you already work from home, it’s possible to transition your job to an RV without any issues.
Some companies currently encourage employees to work remotely. As long as you can deliver your work on time, they won’t care from which location you send it.
You can contact your employer and get direct permission to work on the road in your RV, or you can go rogue and keep the details of your travels to yourself.
Where to Find Remote Job Positions
FlexJob is the go-to job placement service for full-time RVers looking for a flexible working arrangement, especially for people with niche skills such as:
- Graphic Designer
- Data Entry
- Software Engineering
- Copy Editor
RV Freelancing Jobs
The free-spirited nature of RV enthusiasts often goes hand-in-hand with freelance jobs, such as:
- Building a multi-level marketing business
- Selling handmade artwork or crafts
- Providing in-person services
- Picking up tasks from freelancing websites
- Having a blog, social media or youtube channel
- Working rideshare or grocery delivery gigs
I always pick up extra money by using my artistic skills at every campground I visit by selling customized RV signage to display at the campsite.
RVers are also appreciative of instant campground services. A person willing to dog sit/walk, cut hair, paint nails, sew, do RV repairs, or help with computer issues can be in demand.
How to Pick Up Freelance Work From Your RV
Most campgrounds won’t allow outright advertising of services on the side of your camper, or a sign stuck in the grass at your campsite for legal reasons.
If your freelance business isn’t strictly online, promote it by printing business cards listing your services and contact info. Take a stroll around the RV park, talk to guests in person, and hand them your card.
Post your information in the RV park laundry and community rooms.
If you create custom or unique items, display them at your campsite. When guests inquire about them, you can often make a sale.
Sell at Craft Fairs or Flea Markets
I know of many talented RV artists who sign up for local craft or art shows or flea markets around the country. Between stops, they work from the recreational vehicle to build an inventory of unique pieces to sell.
Search online for craft fairs and flea markets in destinations you’d like to visit to see what’s available.
Use Freelance Websites
To take on singular tasks that can add up to a decent paycheck, look into websites like Textbroker, Fiverr, UpWork, or CrewScale.
7 Tips for Working While Living in an RV
1. Decide Upfront on Your “Home State” for Tax Purposes
Full-time RV options include income-tax-free states that can stretch your income even further. Check out RVMail.com for a service that also provides a unique address to qualify for residency.
2. Dedicate a Specific RV Area to Work
Having a single spot in your camper to hold paperwork, laptop, or crafting supplies is vital for efficiency. An RV with office space is even better to avoid moving work materials in and out of storage compartments every day.
3. Invest in a Hotspot
To work remotely without worry, you’ll need plenty of reliable Wi-Fi, and you won’t find that at any campground or by using your mobile phone.
The Verizon Jetpack is a top choice for working RVers who need to be online for hours each day.
4. Create and Stick to Working Hours
Set working hours and days so everyone can be on the same schedule. Have others plan time away from the RV so the person working can concentrate or handle work calls without interruption.
5. Inform Camping Neighbors That You Work
Give other campground guests the “signal” when you don’t want to be disturbed, such as shutting your door or hanging out a flag.
6. Consider Monthly Stays to Reduce Work Downtime From Travel
If deadlines or crafting projects are time-consuming, staying longer at each campsite will streamline your work schedule by eliminating travel and campsite set-up delays.
7. Get a Portable Power Station
Having a solar or electric charging power station removes any fear you’ll be without your phone or laptop when you need it most.
Working from your RV isn’t difficult when you know where to look for mobile jobs or learn how to create effective and efficient RV office space and work practices.
If I can sustain a good RV lifestyle by workamping and freelancing, so can you.
Please remember one thing. You didn’t decide to RV to be constantly working, so use the information above to find the perfect balance between work and fun!