Grey nomad jobs: How to build savings while on the road

Nov 01, 2019
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There are plenty of jobs for grey nomads across Australia with several websites listing opportunities. Source: Getty

Grey nomads have generally already bid farewell to full-time employment when they hit the road for an adventure of a lifetime, but this doesn’t mean you have to forego any work opportunities while exploring the country.

You may not want to re-enter the workforce on a permanent basis but if the funds are lacking a bit, or you want to settle down somewhere for a few weeks or months at a time, then casual jobs may suit your needs. From picking grapes to helping with maintenance around a caravan park, over-60s still have plenty of options when it comes to adding a few dollars to the bank account.

As a grey nomad you’re probably quite flexible which employers will love, so as long as you’re not afraid of a bit of hard work, you’ll easily be able to land a job.

Identify your skills

There is nothing better than experience and as an over-60 you’ve no doubt got some good skills under your belt. Have a good think about what expertise you have that other people might want to tap into while on the road, you’ve no doubt gained plenty over the years, either from previous paid employment or in day-to-day life.

Do you have a knack for making hand-crafted Christmas cards, for instance? Can you sew? Or are you a bit of an IT bug who has the ability to solve computer issues that leave the rest of us scratching our heads? Did you ever work in a restaurant waiting on tables when you were putting yourself through university? Do you have a truck licence?

Once you’ve made a list of your skills and experience, add them to your CV, and don’t forget to include life skills, such as competent home cook.

Gain further qualifications

If you have the time and money, you could consider updating your qualifications by completing a course through TAFE. For those who are planning a holiday in advance, you could do this from the comfort of your own home before you hit the road or, if you’re already out exploring, some courses are offered online, meaning all you’ll need is a laptop and access to the Internet.

While this certainly isn’t necessary, it’s a good option if you plan to settle in a caravan park for a few months. For example, if you’ve cared for your elderly parents, think about obtaining a Cert III in Aged Care so you can pick up casual work wherever you go.

Search job seeker websites

Just like you did while working full-time, you can find opportunities for work online. There are plenty of websites with a variety of job postings from all around Australia, such as The Grey Nomads, Grey Nomads Jobs and No Boundaries.

All operate fairly simply, with the ability to search different areas of the country for the perfect fit. The jobs range from a grounds person at a caravan park to a farmhand on a large outback property, there are even teaching roles at local schools.

If you plan your trip around what is happening where, such as grain or grape harvesting, you will no doubt have an influx of job opportunities to choose from.

For those travelling around Christmas time, then you could consider popping on a Santa suit and helping out at local shopping centres. They generally provide some kind of training to help get you into character and will have the red suit to slip into ready to go.

In some cases, the employers offer accomodation and meals in exchange for work, which is a good option if you’re looking for a bit of a break from travelling for a month or two. Others are just after a helping hand for a couple of weeks in tending to the property.

Look into house-sitting opportunities

While life on the road is appealing, there could come a time when you need a bit of a break and want to settle somewhere in the comfort of a fully-furnished house. House sitting is a great way to relax for a few weeks or even months while the home owners are away holidaying and, although you won’t be earning an income, you will be able to put your feet up and enjoy the luxuries of not having to share a communal bathroom or kitchen for a bit.

As well as sharing job opportunities for over-60s on the road, the website The Grey Nomads also has a section where people can browse house sitting options. Most home owners are generally after someone to look after the house and property for a month or so at a time, with the only requirements to ensure the garden is maintained and perhaps care for the family pet.

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Have you ever considered finding work while travelling around the country? Where have you taken up jobs during caravanning holidays?

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