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In this episode of The RV Entrepreneur podcast I talk with Michael Boyink on how to find workamping jobs while RVing.
At different times while pulling into campgrounds, Alyssa and I have considered the possibility of workamping (or camphosting). We have mostly had these thoughts when pulling into epic campgrounds like the KOA near Santa Cruz, California. You want to pay me and give me free lodging to work here part-time, just a few miles away from the ocean? Okay, no problem.
Camphosting is where you work part-time at specifically an RV park or campground and they cover your lodging payment.
Workamping is the all encompassing term used when talking any kind of work exchange for lodging. Workamping can mean many things (i.e working on a farm, being a security guard, tourist guide, etc).
While workamping at a campground, a few of your duties might include:
- Registration with campers
- Cleaning park facilities
- Office management
Pros to Workamping
Workamping can save you thousands of dollars during peak travel season.
Michael and his family have sought out workamping gigs during the peak travel season, because RV lodging is most expensive during this time. By finding a workamping gig they can exponentially lower their travel costs.
Workamping can open you up to unique experiences you wouldn’t have otherwise.
Some of our friends we met in Santa Cruz, California workamp at a KOA there. They live a few blocks from the beach and are able to stay in one of the most expensive parts of the country with zero lodging cost. They’ve also workamped out on the east coast near Myrtle Beach. They will both work part-time during the week at the campground and in return, paid for their time and receive a free place to park their RV.
At this point in their lives, they wouldn’t be able to afford the $2,000/month that it would typically cost to stay at that luxury RV park.
Workamping allows you to get rid of your largest expense.
Most of the time, RV park lodging is going to be one of your biggest expenses. By workamping, you can eliminate it all together.
You can experience a new town like a local.
Because you’re working and staying for a longer period of time, you can try out local restaurants, make friends, go to church, or have the comfort of getting to know a town better.
Cons to Workamping
You have less autonomy of your time.
A lot of full-time RVers we’ve met chose this lifestyle because of “ultimate freedom”. While workamping, you are beholden to someone else’s schedule and time.
Most Workamping jobs don’t pay very well.
While workamping covers the cost of lodging, not all of these gigs pay fantastic. If you aren’t making money on a side hustle, then you won’t be getting ahead financially (just covering costs of living).
There will always be drama in the workplace.
Just like any other work situation, Michael says that RV parks and campgrounds have their fair share of drama to deal with while workamping.
How to find Workamping Jobs
Do your homework on any park before applying for a position.
What’s the location like? What kind of reviews does the park have online? All of these could potentially be red flags if you don’t like the location or the park has terrible online reviews. Where there’s smoke, there’s fire.
Workamp only at parks where you would actually stay.
Michael says this is some of the best advice he could give. You should only apply for workamping positions at parks where you would want to go stay.
Just because there isn’t a workamper position posted somewhere, doesn’t mean they aren’t looking for workampers.
Michael said that for one of his workamping positions he simply emailed a park where his family had stayed before. They’d had a great experience with the campground and he asked if they needed help. As it turns out, they did.
Workamper Job Boards
The resources below are a great place to start sourcing jobs as a workamper. However, there are also sites like WWOOFing that allow you to find unique workamping jobs on ranches and farms. You can read more about WWOOFing here on Mike’s blog.
- Workamper News
- National Park Service Volunteer Jobs
- KOA Campgrounds Work Kamper Program
- Workers On Wheels
- CoolWorks Seasonal Jobs
- Camp Host Jobs
- National Forests Job Opportunities
A few Additional Things We Cover In Today’s Podcast:
- The best and worst workamping experiences Michael has had
- Tips on how to increase your chances of landing a great workamping job
- How does workamping compare to running your own business on the road