How To Make Travel Look Good On Your CV

Many people, especially those on a competitive career path, are very hesitant about taking some time off to travel the world. I’ve met people who say that they would love to travel the world for a year, and that they probably will – one day. “One day, when I’ve finished studying”, “One day, when I’ve made it in my career”, “One day, when the kids grow up”, “One day, when I retire”….We both know that day will never come, because there will always be something in the way. There is no right time to travel, which is why you should do it RIGHT NOW – we can’t live our whole lives dreaming about the future. But what about that career? Won’t it look bad on my CV – having a whole year just blank? Here are some tips on how to travel and still make it look good on your resume…

How To Make Travel Look Good On Your CV

How To Make Travel Look Good On Your CV

How To Make Travel Look Good On Your CV

 

Volunteer Or Work

Taking a whole year off to volunteer will look very impressive on your CV, and you’ll have a great time doing it. Besides, there are so many types of volunteer work that you might actually find something which will be directly related to the skills needed in your job.

This will show that you have an incredible passion and love for your work, care about others and aren’t afraid of hard work.

If you have training and work in health care, taking a year off for medical volunteering abroad will be both a rewarding as well as a beneficial experience for your career. A more general but also very beneficial option is to teach English abroad. There are both jobs where you volunteer for free as well as jobs that actually pay you a salary. That way you can work, but still have time left over to explore the country you’re in and enjoy the best it has to offer, be it on the weekends and afternoons.

Just Want To Travel?

If you’re not into volunteering or working abroad but just want to travel, then don’t lie about it on your CV and say you had a work experience when you didn’t. Instead, be honest about it and put your gap year under “Other Experience”, including the dates. This, however, doesn’t mean that your experience wasn’t important. You learn a lot of skills from traveling, it’s just about putting it down the right way on paper. If you learned how to bargain and haggle, you’ve learned some great “negotiation skills”.

The planning, financing and organization of your trip taught you “planning and budgeting”, and how to keep a record of your expenses.

Your unplanned situations, culture shocks, and how you dealt with them can be put down as “adaptability”, and you can write about how you cultivated great “language and communication skills” when communicating with people and overcoming language barriers.

Show Off The Blog

If you have a travel blog, it’s definitely something to include on your CV, and why not include the long list of skills you learned from maintaining your blog: Website designing, php coding, networking, writing, SEO and social media skills are all very good and useful skills to include!

The Big No-No

Many companies like that their employees have taken a year off because it often means they’ve “done it” already and won’t be traveling again. Don’t let on that you might be leaving for another big trip, even if you are. For those of you who are doubting whether to take that year off to travel the world, I hope this article gave you a kick in the right direction, and for those who have just finished a big trip, I hope this helps with working out what to write on your CV.

5 Things We’ve Learned after our 1st Year Of Travel Blogging

What?! Was the first thing that came to my mind – how the hell did we get here?!

This year has gone past so fast – we have had As We Travel for exactly one whole year, and we’re enjoying it more and more as every week goes by. We have definitely had our ups and downs, and despite having so many great bloggers to learn from, we still learnt SO many things the hard way. Here are a few things we have learnt during our 1st year of blogging – ENOJY!

Blogging Is Easy – Travel Blogging Is Not

Sitting at a desk in a nice ergonomic chair with your laptop, having all day to work, food in the fridge and a home to live in, is far away from the reality of a travel blogger. We write on our 11 inch laptops lying in awkward positions on hard beds in run-down hostels, moving every few days and trying to explore the places we visit while working on a website. To me, the most difficult task has been to keep the focus and inspiration while trying to deal with Visa applications, transport, finding WiFi etc. Traveling while running a blog full-time is unlike anything we’ve done before. It has really taken our travels to a whole different turn.

Good Things Take Time

I’ve found that many people I meet who know nothing about blogging (and don’t have a blog themselves), have many presumptions about it. They either think it’s really easy to create a successful blog – that it’s just to start writing a few posts and you’ll make heaps of money, or they think it’s a waste of time and don’t see it as an actual job. Either of the two, they don’t take it seriously at all. This can easily make you doubt yourself and question what you’re really doing. You know you would never work at a place without getting paid the first month, never write for a magazine for free everyday for months, but at the same time you’re spending as many hours as a full time job without getting paid for your blog at first. Just try to remember that all good things take time. Soon you will be rewarded for your hard work, and you can give all those who didn’t believe in you the middle finger 😉

Without Passion You Lose The Drive

To keep up a blog, you need to have a true passion for what you do, or else you can stop doing it right away. We learned pretty quickly that blogging and traveling is exactly what we want right now in our lives. We want to share our travels, our thoughts and our tips, and we want to do it on our own terms. We want to be our own bosses, no matter how much we have to work for it. People always go on and on about how the young people today want to start their own businesses but never realize how much work it means. I don’t care how much work it means, I want it. And I know that if I didn’t want it so bad, I would have quit doing it a long time ago…

Even The Smallest Things Make A Big Difference

We like to play around a little and test different things on our site. Sometimes it works, sometimes not. But if we’re curious, we’ll give it a try. What we have noticed, though, is that some of those tweeks sometimes make a big difference. Put a plugin here or there, and you can either lose subscribers or gain subscribers. – “It’s in the little things”.

You Can’t Do This On Your Own

Blogging is a social business. Bloggers interact and share with each other. A blog with good content and design would be nothing without readers and other bloggers sharing your site with others. Social network means everything for a website, being able to connect in different ways with people. As much as you would like to, you can’t only rely on yourself, but you also need the social network to help you out. Well there you go – we feel so blessed to be able to do this as our full-time jobs, sharing our content with you as we travel around the world – hoping that a picture, a few lines will provoke and inspire you to also go out there and live this life the way YOU want. We thank you from the bottom of our hearts, since we know none of this would be what it is without you reading these words, and sharing what we do with others around the world – SO THANK YOU SO MUCH!! :)

5 Things We’ve Learned After Our 2nd Year of Travel Blogging

It almost feels like a lifetime has passed since we started AsWeTravel.com exactly two years ago today – so much has happened in our lives since then. Last year we posted a blog about some of the things we learned from our first year of blogging, in the hopes that you might learn something from our experiences as well. This second year has been different in so many ways and we have learnt as much about travel blogging as we have about ourselves and the kind of life we want to lead. Here are some of the main things we’ve learnt from our second year of travel blogging…

Limit Your Daily Time Online

During our first year of blogging we became obsessed with having internet access everywhere and being connected online all day every day. During our second year we realized that the blog doesn’t ALWAYS need ”round the clock care”, it can take care of itself for most of the day – and, more importantly – many things you think you need to do can wait. We realized that we were spending many more hours online than we actually needed – the work we had to do could have taken only a few hours, but we were messing around, working ineffectively which would result in us spending 6-8 hours instead. By giving ourselves a deadline, or a time limit, we worked much more effectively, and gave ourselves more free time to explore the places we visited. Decide how many hours you really need to spend online every day, and then only spend that time working.

Learn How To Separate Travel & Travel Blogging

When you travel full-time like we have for the last 2 years, it is very important to learn how to separate work and travel, then draw a clear line between the two. Rather than sitting in a café or bar tweeting on your iPhone (for your blog) – sit back, relax and look around you – learn to enjoy the moments just as a traveler, not always as a travel blogger. By always being connected with your iPhone, updating Twitter telling everyone where you are etc – you risk not actually enjoying the places you visit. As a travel blogger, it is easy to lose yourself in work, and by always “looking for the story” you might actually miss it. We noticed that when we disconnected and simply went out as travelers – the right story for the right city came to us by itself.

Ask & You Shall Receive

This year we’ve realized that if you want something – sponsored trips, free hotel stays, travel products to test etc – all you really need to do is ask. After getting sponsored stays in over 30 hotels and hostels in the last year, and getting plenty of other sponsored attractions, passes and activities with tourism boards – we’ve realized that the worst that could happen is to simply get a ‘no’, and that shouldn’t put you off but instead push you to grow your site & connections even more. The same goes for other things as well – if you tell yourself that you will reach a certain goal (monthly traffic, twitter followers, earnings etc) eventually you will find a way to achieve it – if you just trust and are passionate enough to work hard for it. We’ve really learnt how to appreciate the power of positive goal setting and mental focus on what we want, rather than giving any focus to negative events which may show up.

Pace Yourself & Don’t Try To Do Everything

In the last year, we completely overwhelmed ourselves and tried to do too many things rather than taking one thing at a time – one example was the Europe Train Challenge. During the train challenge we traveled to 33 countries in 75 days, spent 2 days in each place, filmed a video episode from each city & wrote 2 articles about each city – phew! 😛 That really was an amazing experience, and it forced us to really focus and work hard, but looking back we have learnt that it is better to focus on fewer things and do them as well as you can, than trying to do too many things at once. By trying to film, take photos, stand in front of the camera, write articles and at the same time capture and experience every place we visited – traveling became pretty stressful, especially with a time-limit. We learned to focus on one thing at a time and pace ourselves so that we wouldn’t get overwhelmed – remember that you can always go back next year again. 😉

What Others Think Of Your Blog Is None Of Your Business

You will meet a lot of people who don’t understand why or what you’re doing when travel blogging (my parents still don’t understand what we really do), and some will even disapprove, but just because people don’t agree with what you do, that doesn’t mean they’re right. Never do anything you don’t want to do, and never give up on something you believe in just because others don’t. When I heard Wayne Dyer say “what you think of me is none of my business”, I could really relate this to travel blogging. Learn to meet jealousy, doubt, ignorance and confusion with a smile. Our second year of blogging has been full of many great successes and a few big mistakes, but that’s what life is for – to live, to learn, and to see every mistake as a learning curve which helps you grow as a person. We still have a lot left to learn, and I’m really looking forward to see what lessons this year (2012) will bring.

3 Years of Travel Blogging – It’s About Learning & Growing

It feels like these past 3 years have gone by so quickly and yet we’ve experienced and learned so much since we started blogging – when we began this journey 3 years ago we never realised how much it would end up changing our lives and the decisions we made. Who knew a blog could be life changing in such a way? Today we want to take a moment to look back at our year and the things we’ve learned about ourselves, blogging and business, and what we’re most grateful for …

Learning Skills For Any Industry.

Sometimes there is just no short-cut, and you have to do things the hard way by learning from your mistakes – this year, we’ve done that more than ever before with the 3 new non-travel related websites and 2 iPhone apps we are working on. But while we learned so many new things, we also realised just how much the knowledge and skills you get from travel blogging can be used in other industries online.

Next to the good old “make-money-blogging-bloggers” – travel bloggers are among the most internet-tech-savvy of bloggers, and it’s a great industry to learn new things which you can implement in other projects.

Techniques we take for granted or are over-used in travel blogging can be used to really push and promote your company websites to another level elsewhere.

Our YouTube Fans Are Awesome!

Among the things we’re most grateful for this year with AsWeTravel are our YouTube followers – if you are not following us on there yet, make sure you join us: www.youtube.com/AsWeTravelAfter we released 50 travel videos in 2011 and 2012, it was a big anti-climax when nobody seemed interested in them on our blog – not many comments, not much appreciation – nothing … we thought the hard work of making these videos had been a massive waste of time. But it turns out that good things sometimes take time. Today we have over half a million views on YouTube, and 50,000 monthly viewers watching our videos – we love the crazy comments and wild discussions that our videos provoke, from laws about filming publicly to how you’re really supposed to drink Turkish coffee. We have had TV channels from America, Canada, China, and Czech Republic reaching out to us wanting to use our video content on their official TV channels, and it’s really fun to see that people appreciate the effort we have put into them.

Every Path In Life Has Sacrifices. 

No matter what you do in life, there will always be sacrifices – there will be as many sacrifices if you choose to quit your 9 to 5 job as there will be if you choose to stay. This isn’t something many people care to talk about – we live with this illusion that getting away from everything will cure every problem we have, when in fact leaving will often bring up even more problems than if you were to stay at home if you don’t understand the real cause. During the last 3 years we have been tested over and over again if this life choice to travel and work the way we do really was the right decision to make – the amount of times we nearly decided to give it all up for a “morally-correct” job can’t be counted on our fingers.

The realisation that you will have to sacrifice things with any choice you make in life really helped us stay on track and continue to build what we have done.

It all comes down to what means more to you, and what you’re willing to let go of. We chose an uncertain life over a safe path, and we have to deal with the consequences of that, but in the end it has all been worth it

30 Responses to How To Make Travel Look Good On Your CV

  1. Waegook Tom July 30, 2012 at 4:58 pm #

    Great tips, especially about volunteering and teaching abroad. Travel is definitely something you can turn into a positive on your CV. Nice info about the blog skills too – I’d never have thought of that :)

    • Sofia July 31, 2012 at 3:52 am #

      Thanks Tom, yes it’s easy to forget that everything you know about travel blogging today are things you’ve learned along the way and skills that most people don’t know anything about.

  2. Vi July 30, 2012 at 3:17 pm #

    I really loved approach in New Zealand. I got best paid job I ever had before and nobody cares you will be leaving country in a year. I think it because kiwies travel a lot and it is much easier to understand each other.
    I doubt it would happen in US or Canada.

    • Sofia July 31, 2012 at 3:45 am #

      Great to hear it was easy for you, I also think that because they’re so isolated and far away they realize that a foreigner might not have come to New Zealand to stay forever and are more used to having people staying for a shorter time.

  3. Beverley | Pack Your Passport July 31, 2012 at 5:14 am #

    Great tips! I’ve just arrived in Auckland and two years in Australia and I’m looking for jobs here. I recently added my travel blog, the skills I’ve developed from running it and the social media management I do on a freelance basis to my C.V and the response from potential employers and recruitment agencies has been great actually :-)

    I’m actually getting put forward for social media roles just from travel blogging and freelance work which is great because, even though I have a marketing degree, I’ve never done that kind of job in an actual full-time role.

    I don’t think people should worry so much about taking a break in their career, why do people think this is the be all and end all of life?! You can have a career anytime in your life but travel is always going to be easier to do when you’re younger and don’t have all the commitments of a family/mortgage etc :-)

    • Nathan July 31, 2012 at 10:26 am #

      Hi Beverly, great to hear that you’re getting such great response from potential employers.

      I agree, taking a career break shouldn’t be something to worry about, and a gap year could easily be turned into something positive on the CV that will actually separate you from the rest.

  4. Jen July 30, 2012 at 11:29 pm #

    This is fantastic and really useful. I believe it’s called “funemployment”!

    • Sofia July 31, 2012 at 3:53 am #

      Thanks Jen, haha yes funemployment sounds like a great word 😉

  5. andiperullo July 31, 2012 at 12:17 am #

    Brilliant ideas!

    • Nathan July 31, 2012 at 4:50 am #

      thanks :p

  6. Tiny Girl with Big Bag July 31, 2012 at 4:14 pm #

    Very creative writing, I really like the idea. You could also put in the “marketing” skills for yourselves, as I am pretty sure that this article will go a long way 😉

    • Nathan August 1, 2012 at 2:44 am #

      haha yes marketing online is also a skill we learn while blogging – thanks for adding that one!

  7. mzansigirl July 31, 2012 at 9:25 pm #

    This is a great post for all long-term travellers. I’ve added my travels in my CV but not as creatively as you suggested. Thanks for the tips!

    • Nathan August 1, 2012 at 2:42 am #

      Hey – thanks for the comment, glad we could help :)

  8. Jesse August 1, 2012 at 10:01 am #

    I can say that I’m not one of those lifeless office workers who don’t have the light to at least experience the outdoor.

  9. Sophie August 2, 2012 at 6:44 pm #

    Great tips guys. People put up all these barriers that stop themselves from travelling when they should just go and be free and enjoy the world. Hopefully anyone reading this article will feel inspired!

    • Sofia August 5, 2012 at 2:28 am #

      Hey Sophie,

      I agree, people put up a lot of barriers for themselves of what they can and cannot do, or should and shouldn’t do.

  10. Harrison August 3, 2012 at 3:40 pm #

    These are great tips I will consider when I create a more travel focused CV.

    Interestingly, majority of US hiring managers/recruiters would hate any type of gap year (or just gaps of time in general). They are okay with volunteer experience, with some reputable organization, but usually the idea of travel bloggers or travel in general is held in negative light with the US, which sucks.

    But like someone else mentioned, certain countries like New Zealand have an open mind to being able to travel. It’s awesome. Wish the US was more like that.

    • dansandersn August 5, 2012 at 1:45 am #

      That’s because the US isn’t as forward thinking as the rest of the western world (or even ‘non-western’ English speaking countries). The general view held in America is that any time doing anything not directly related to a career/somehow earning large amounts of money is wasted time, and don’t see travel, particularly travel outside its own borders as worthwhile. Very telling, no?

  11. Jennifer August 4, 2012 at 7:20 pm #

    This may work for some careers, but others such as engineering are a lot trickier.

    • Sofia August 5, 2012 at 2:23 am #

      Hey Jennifer,

      funny that you mentioned that, I just met an engineer in Malaysia who had been traveling the world for about 8 months, and had just spent three months working on a building in Cambodia.

      He had found some temporary jobs along the way of his travels, and was on his way to Australia to see if he could get some work there for a bit.

      I agree that it’s definitely trickier, but I’m sure he could include those temporary jobs on his CV 😉

  12. Jeremy August 5, 2012 at 3:49 pm #

    This is a great idea for a post! I think sharing that you’re a travel blogger would be very value-added information for a potential employer as blogging is something many companies are interested in. Just make sure you’re not Roosh V and sharing a link to your site!

  13. Anthony August 11, 2012 at 12:15 pm #

    Great post….AWFUL photo of me 😛

  14. Skott - Get Up and Globe August 12, 2012 at 2:33 pm #

    This may be the most well-timed post I have ever read. Shawna and I are headed back to Canada in the very near future, ending our 15-month RTW honeymoon. We are absolutely thrilled to go back, and although we are not to concerned about jumping back into careers, the whole concept of how to sell our time away on our resume was something we just discussed yesterday.

    Super helpful guys – appreciate it!

    Skott

  15. Jason - iCotswolds August 14, 2012 at 7:41 pm #

    Great post, i did something very similar but finaced my travel by playing online poker, its a great way to see the world and work at the same time, once it came to my cv i dropped the bit about poker financing my trip as it can sometimes have negative effect.

    My only wish was that i had blogged the trip although it was a few years ago now, oh well!

  16. matt August 14, 2012 at 8:35 pm #

    Great tips, will try this out for my next trip.

  17. vidisha September 2, 2012 at 8:59 pm #

    These are great ideas and a nice way to present travel on the career front. Thanks!

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