How To Work Abroad: Remote Jobs

Clear waters in the Philippine Islands

This was my view for several weeks while working in the Philippines.

Tired of the office lifestyle and want to hit the road with your laptop? If you have a marketable skill such as writing, web design, visual effects, graphics, photography or things of that nature, you may be able to successfully travel and make income from anywhere. If you don’t have technical skills, don’t worry, there are other remote jobs in demand such as virtual assistants for those who are organized and have good communication skills. If you’re already a freelancer, you’re one step ahead. Here are some resources to help you find a remote-based job:

Job Sites for Remote Freelance Work

  • GeneralAssembly is a global community offering both online training and opportunities for instructors in a wide range of skills such as web development, design, business fundamentals, digital marketing, product management and beyond. The classes are affordable and a good place to start if you want to expand your digital skill set so you can work from anywhere. They often have great specials, for example right now if you purchase one class you will gain access to their entire library of live online classes and videos.
  • VFX Artists can search for jobs (both remote and in-studio) on the CG Meetup job board or the following job boards: FilmTVPros, TutorialsPlusJobs, VFXJobs, CG Society, ArtJobsConnectionCreativeCow, CreativeHeads, CGGig, 2-Pop, UtopiaPeople and 3DJobs. As I’m frequently asked to help find talented VFX artists, I now post job openings on my own job board at suzfx.
  • Graphics artists jobs can be found at Motionographer.comMandy.com99designs and Dribble (make sure you tick off the box that says “Location: Remote / Anywhere”).
  • UpworkoDesk and Toptal are great places to pitch your work and offer niche services.
  • RemoteOK, Freelancer, KropWorkingNomads, VirtualVocations, SkiptheDrive, AuthenticJobs, StackOverflow, PeoplePerHour, Guru, UpWorkFiverr and Sortfolio are massive central job boards mostly for technical jobs but others too including customer support, sales, finance and marketing.
  • FlexJobs spans a massive 100 different career categories for freelance and telecommuting opportunities. It has a monthly fee of $14.95 but could be worth it for the caliber jobs they offer including CNN, NBC, etc.
  • Envato Studio seeks out designers and web developers and they accept applications from freelancers.
  • Crossover connects quality talent with companies looking for you. They offer only remote jobs of 40 hr work weeks and up, and high-paying positions.
  • LinkedIn, VelvetJobs and MyOpportunity lets you search for full time or contract jobs of your preference (unlimited skills and industries).
  • Become a Virtual Assistant and work from anywhere in the world doing admin work for small businesses. Check out timeetc.co.uk for those based in the UK, timeetc.com or zirtual.com for the US, and the Australian Virtual Business Network (avbn.com.au) for those down under.
  • Digital Tutors is a site that works with digital specialists (like you) to create online tutorials. This is a a paying job if you are highly skilled in any software on their list, 3D, VFX, design, digital painting, illustration, web development, programming, game development, etc. and you can do it from anywhere in the world.
  • GlobeTrotterGirls have assembled a great resource with job listing sites and tips for how to earn money while you travel. Many of their resources are specific to the UK and Europe.
  • Teaching English Online. If you have a masters degree you have the option of working for a University doing online teaching. Englishtown English Language Teaching requires a university degree and you must be a native English speaker, but if you qualify, the classes are online and make a good supplemental income.
  • Buddy School is an online tutor site, no University degree needed and requirements are minimal. You have the option of teaching any language or skill via Skype. Consider starting with a low rate and investing a small amount in advertisement on the site ($20 US) to get your first clients.
  • If you have an excellent command of the English language you can likely find remote work as a Proofreader or an Editor. Here is a fantastic list of Editorial job sites, while proofreading jobs can be found at ProofreadAnywhere (whom also offer training), ProofreadingServices, ProZ, as well as freelancer sites named above including UpWork and FlexJobs.

Ideas for Working Abroad

  • Jobbatical offers one-year long career adventures around the world; find a good-paying job and have the chance to explore another country or city at the same time.
  • Coolworks is a job portal for those who have an interest in adventurous, outdoorsy, unusual or remote jobs in the US only.
  • EscapetheCity is a unique board of remote opportunities designed to help you find fulfilling paying jobs, internships and volunteering positions. You can search by factors such as ‘exotic’, ‘social impact’ and ‘entrepreneurial’. They call these jobs “exciting alternatives for mainstream corporate professionals.”
  • If you’re fluent in English, teaching English is a very common way to live and work abroad. Many companies will also pay your travel expenses and accommodations: TEFL Job Board .
  • Learn a digital skill so you can offer your services internationally. Newbie or pro, Envato Tutorials and Adobe KnowHow offer a ton of free tutorials to help you learn design software and techniques. Perfect for anyone interested in doing freelance graphic design, web development, photo editing, or anything in the design world. Additionally, FXPHD offers online training for graphics and visual effects, while Lynda.com offers training videos for photography, animation, web development and business skills. (Side note: Lynda.com is FREE to anyone with a Los Angeles County library card.)
  • Europe Language Jobs has listings of thousands of jobs across Europe, and they are looking for candidates with language skills and a desire to travel. Register for free and start searching by language, country or skill.
  • Going Global offers job listings by country. Their sites include tips for getting hired in each country, work permits and visa information and financial considerations in each country.
  • Internations is a website that connects expats around the world and you may find connections here to help with relocation and employment.
  • Craigslist has short and long term opportunities in nearly every major city in the world. Browse the ‘gigs’ section for freelance jobs and don’t be afraid to post post your skills and services on craigslist boards overseas. Don’t work for free!
  • Set job alerts at Indeed, Monster or Career Builder by key words or company names and your location. I have found this very useful.

Global Change / Relief Jobs

  • Relief Web offers listings for paying jobs around the world related to humanitarian and development efforts.
  • InterAction is a company that for 30 years has been acting as a united voice for global change. They provide listings of hundreds of NGO job opportunities internationally.

Sell Your Art, Photography and Stories

  • Travel Photography and travel writing can be a difficult avenue to generate income, but if this is your passion check out MatadorU which offers education in travel writing, photography and filmmaking and may help you get your foot in the door.
  • Travel writer Jessica Festa assembled a helpful guide to selling your travel photographs whether you shoot on an iphone or a DSLR. Other outlets looking for your high quality images to sell as stock photography are Twenty20 and EyeEm.
  • Redbubble is an online marketplace that helps artists get their work seen and sold. They create products such as wall art, phone cases, t-shirts, vinyl stickers, posters and more, all of which require artwork from you! Photography, digital composites and sketches are great for an outlet like this. There are a slew of other wall art companies that will pay you for your images and artwork so they can print and sell them online; if you have artistic images and are looking to make some extra money, sign up at any of these sites (or all of them!) and start delivering images: Society6, Crated, Zazzle, Papirmass, Fine Art America, Minted, Creative Market, Graphic River and Artist Rising.
  • Looking for freelance photography gigs whereever you might be this month? Search contract photography jobs on LinkedIn, Film/TV Pros, Zerply, Mandy, Krop, Guru, FlexJobs and VelvetJobs.

Blogging Partnerships

  • Bloggers Required and Ghost Lamp are sites that companies come to looking for bloggers to review their product and blog about it. Just sign up for their weekly email of blogging assignments. These aren’t paying jobs, but if you are already a blogger, then chances are these features could expand your exposure and potentially bring you some income from advertising, sponsored posts or product reviews.
  • Luxury Travel Blog keeps a database of travel bloggers looking for assignments, both free and paid, giving you a chance for additional exposure by offering a travel article, product review or photo of the week. This site is not exclusive to luxury travel bloggers or popular blogs. Whatever the nature of your travel blog, you can submit your site for inclusion.
  • MassiveSway is a company offering paid opportunities to bloggers for their reviews and coverage of specific brands and products; it could bring you some income if they list a product that you stand behind and want to promote.
  • If you are looking to get your articles published, FreedomWithWriting shares a list of editors, publishers and magazines who accept work from freelancers and rate info is included.
  • Problogger Job Board offers great options for those with good web skills, or bloggers looking for writing and partnership opportunities.

Advice From People Who Made it Work

Handling Taxes While Abroad

  • Check out the site Taxes For Expats for information for details about filing your taxes abroad and an explanation of all the taxes rules you should be aware of.