At the risk of starting an argument with certain Workampers, I’ll say it once again: Workamping is not a career. As a matter of fact, workamping is not defined by any one specific job. It is a sector of work with many options. None of which on their own will set you up for the future.
Call it a matter of semantics if you wish. But I will argue the point that workamping is not a career path one takes for successfully making a living on the road. On the other hand, we learned early on, that takes developing multiple revenue streams and maintaining a budget. It requires focus and determination to grow income that supports your nomadic lifestyle. Financial sustainability means consistently putting money in the bank. It means having an emergency fund. And it requires saving for the future. Not only this, but it’s important to have funds to pay important expenses like insurance, health care, food, rent, and fun. Workamping alone will not do this.
Workamping can, however, help you get on your way down that path. It’s just not a career.
If workamping is not a career, what is it?
Workamping is a methodology. It is a means to an end. It is a unique and diverse class of job opportunities available to RVers and nomads of all ages. But workamping is not a career. Let’s break it down to basics. Resort management may be a career path one chooses to pursue. This may allow plenty of opportunity for advancement as one earns experience. Landscape maintenance, plumbing, office management, these are careers. They are also all examples of jobs readily available for workampers to gain experience.
Technically speaking, “workamping” is the term used to describe a type of work that involves camping or RV living while also working temporary or seasonal jobs. The work itself depends upon the job and location. It may be related to a variety of industries or careers. These may include hospitality, tourism, or recreation and leisure management. The workamping gigs available may include jobs like campground host, tour guide, landscape/pool maintenance technician, security guard, or seasonal retail associate.
Workamping is merely a method to gain experience. In terms of any professional path, workamping is more of a lifestyle choice. It’s one that enables people to travel and work on a temporary or seasonal basis. Workamping is not a career, nor is it necessarily a stepping stone on any specific career path. What workamping can do, is give you valuable experience. As a result, certain workamping jobs can also help improve abilities that might help you advance in other fields or career paths. Common workamping skills that may be transferable to other industries or career paths, include customer service, sales, project maintenance, or hospitality management.
Fry cook is to restaurant management as workamping is to what?
Let’s take a look at one example of how workamping is not a career. An entry-level position of “campground host” in the workamping sector may lead to prospects for management roles within the hospitality or tourism industry. One possible comparison would be the fry cook job, on the career path to a restaurant manager profession. In this sense, campsite hosts are like short-order cooks. They could be in charge of routine duties like cleaning, maintenance, and customer service. Therefore, the workamping job provides the opportunity to develop their communication, problem-solving, and troubleshooting skills. Just as operating the fryer introduces one to the many aspects of managing a kitchen.
Fryer operation is not the career here, just as workamping is not a career. Successful campsite hosts may eventually be able to assume management positions within the hospitality or tourism sectors as they gain experience and greater responsibility. And as a favorite scene in Repo Man suggests, “There’s room to move as a fry cook.”
So, is workamping a career?
No. Workamping is not a career. Our workamping jobs have been a fun way we’ve explored new areas and saved on rent over the years, while developing our own entrepreneurial careers. And that is the only way we’ve become confident with our financial future. Not by workamping alone.
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