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3 Ways to Work Abroad

By Amanda Sides on Jun 09, 2016

So you know you want to be your own boss and have your own business, and that's great! But maybe you haven't yet decided exactly what you want to do. Perhaps you're already exploring the possibilities, but why not explore in a bigger way and have some adventures at the same time? Why not try working abroad for a year?

Traveling helps build your confidence, and it can make you better at your job. Working while traveling helps you afford a lengthier trip and have a richer, more local experience than you might get if you stay in hotels and hit up nothing but tourist attractions.

Here are a few ways to enable a work-abroad adventure. Remember to research the visa requirements in your country of choice, although sometimes you will get help from your new employer.

1. Be an Au Pair

I did this for over a year and it was one of the best experiences of my life. Lots of families around the world are looking for live-in nannies, and that could be you! Get up close and personal with the language and the customs. Each situation is very different, but you often you get room and board and a small salary in exchange for childcare and maybe some cooking and cleaning. There are lots of websites that connect au pairs with families.

Most assignments last at least a year, although some families are looking for short-term nannies to help them through certain situations, like summer break, a vacation, or the birth of a new baby.

What you'll practice: patience, creativity, multi-tasking, quick thinking, awareness, communication.

2. Teach English.

Just because you can speak English doesn't mean you can teach it, so you might feel more comfortable if you get a TEFL or similar certification. Many schools require it, anyway.

Often, the contract will be for a year, though there are some that offer semester contracts.

What you'll practice: leadership, public speaking, creativity, organization and planning, time management.

3. Work on a Cruise Ship

Be aware: these jobs sound glamorous, but they often involve long hours. Do your research and make sure you know what you're getting into. You won't get such long periods of time in each country, but you will see a lot of different places. There are also jobs available on private yachts.

What you'll practice: teamwork, cooperation, stress management, dealing with conflict and challenging situations, customer service and people skills.


Have you ever worked abroad? What did you do?

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