Being a full timetravel blogger is probably the hardest thing I’ve ever attempted doing, and that’s coming from someone who went to school for pre-med, and has had 9-5 jobs in veterinary, PR, and publicity. Travel blogging isn’t a job that I applied for, it’s not something that I just “got”, it’s something that I had to create, that had to be built from scratch from the bottom up.
You do not make money from travel blogging right away. It seems like everyone all of a sudden wants to become a travel blogger because we make it seem so easy and awesome, and literally make it look like anyone can get paid to travel the world, but that doesn’t always happen for everyone, or all of a sudden.
It takes a full time commitment to building your site and your audience, not to mention traveling a lot in order to produce content. I’d say on average, travel bloggers work 12-14 hours per day (we literally never stop working), and for most of us, it’s work that isn’t even paid! You have to first get to the level of audience and notoriety that you can offer publicity in exchange for free travel, and once you get big enough, you can start getting paid, but it’s extremely rare to actually make a decent profit. I’m just now at the level where I can get sponsored, or ” free trips” (they aren’t exactly free since I have to do a ton of work for them in exchange), and can make some money off of brands, sponsored content, and press trips. But it isn’t much, which means I have to be doing something else in order to afford rent, bills, and plane tickets right?
Well, remember how I said I’m at the level of getting “free trips”? I saw that as not only an opportunity to travel and produce content to build my site, but also to make money in another very lucrative way; renting my apartment out on Air BNB.
I can literally make over $400 by renting my place out for 2 nights…
In fact, I make such a good profit from renting my apartment out, that it makes more sense for me to go travel and stay somewhere for free, than stay home. I literally have to travel a minimum of 2 weeks per month, just to make enough to cover all or some of my rent, which, by the way, is a whopping $2400. But, I have not paid more than $1000 out of my own pocket for rent, because of Air BNB.
I know renting your place out on Air BNB sounds sketchy, and you’re probably wondering if it’s weird or unsafe to have people stay at your place, but I’ve had no problems so far, and have been able to enjoy traveling often and having a nice place to live and work while I’m home in LA. You’re able to screen and speak to people before agreeing to rent your place out, and even if there is a problem, Air BNB covers up to $100k in loses or damages. Plus, you have to keep in mind that most people that use Air BNB are travelers, just like you, which means they tend to respect the place they stay.
You may be wondering why in the hell I got such an expensive apartment. Trust me, there is no way in hell I’d ever be able to afford a 1000 square foot, one bedroom apartment, with two private entrances, and a driveway in a prime location in West Hollywood for $2400 a month. But I specifically got it because my landlord was Ok with me Air BNBing it out when I traveled, plus it was furnished, and had potential to be fixed up. I invested about $500 of my own money to completely redecorate the place, and made it the ultimate pad for travelers.
My apartment BEFORE I re-decorated (which increased my price per night)
After I redecorated 😉
You can increase the price per night once you gain reviews, and once you get the hang of it, it’s really easy to manage, even with multiple bookings while you’re away traveling. You also get to charge a cleaning fee, which means you can have a cleaning person come in between bookings. I’m not always home to let cleaning people in, so I use one company I trust who uses a key I keep in my lock box.
Even if I don’t have a scheduled sponsored trip coming up, but I know I could use some extra cash or have a booking request I can’t refuse, I’ll take a road trip and go camping somewhere, because that’ll make me around $400-500 just by renting my place out for the weekend! In fact, camping has become one of my favorite hobbies because I can go awesome places for free while I rent my place out for around $150 per night.
I’ve literally taken up camping as a hobby because I can make $150 per night by Air BNBing my place out and camping in a tent for free..
I’ve been Air BNBing my apartment out for about 6 months now, and would highly recommend becoming an Air BNB host to other frequent travelers or aspiring travel bloggers. If you decide to become one, please use my referral code so we both make a little extra money www.airbnb.com/c/alyssar68?s=8!
Also, to give you a better idea of what Air BNB places are like and what yours should look like, it’s always a good idea to stay at one or a few. This code will also get you a $20 credit if you’d like to try it! www.airbnb.com/c/alyssar68?s=8
Here’s some more photos of my place after I re-decorated it and made it Air BNB friendly!
Alyssa is a self-made, full time travel blogger who loves adventure and typically travels the world solo. She's been to 53 countries and 6 continents so far, and believes she has mastered the art of chasing waterfalls, traveling solo, wine drinking, and making budget-traveling look good. Curious to know how she started this career? Check out the About section above!