A Travel Income that Pays While You Sleep

Tim Leffel and his family live among the cobblestone avenues, pastel-colored colonial buildings, and leafy plazas of Guanajuato, one of Mexico’s prettiest towns.

“I really love the pace of life, the emphasis on family and fun rather than wearing ‘busy-ness’ as a badge of honor,” he says. “Since Mexican cities are geared to pedestrians and people are always out and about on foot, we don’t need a car and all the related expenses. Since healthcare costs are reasonable, there’s no fear of a doctor’s visit costing more than a car payment either.”

Tim’s move would have been impossible without the income from his blogs.

Back in 2003, Tim began what was one of the first travel blogs on the web looking at affordable destinations.

Tim was working 9 to 5 at a tech company in the U.S., writing on his nights and weekends and traveling when he could take the time off.

As his blog readership grew the money from the ads on his site starting paying his monthly mortgage. That’s when he realized that he could take the leap and give up the day job.

“The ads are great because you can make money no matter what you are doing,” he says, “while you sleep, while you’re on vacation.”

In a few short years Tim’s blog attracted more than 10,000 views a month and he expanded into blogs that covered other topics—practical travel gear, professional travel writing, and luxury travel in Latin America.

All of Tim’s blogs now have from 10,000 to 80,000 views a month and his payments from advertising make up about 70% of his income…while 30% comes from freelance writing and book sales. He is on track to make six figures this year from his various income streams.

He says that one of the biggest benefits of his work arrangement is the freedom he has to spend time with his wife and young daughter.

“We travel a lot more as a family because we can just hop in a bus and zip off to somewhere exotic-sounding like Zacatecas, Zinuatanajo, Real de Catorce, or Queretaro,” he says.

Tim travels at least once a month, most recently to Peru and Baja California, and can write almost all of it off as a business expense.

“Since we don’t have money worries, we’re less stressed so it’s easy to go with the flow,” he says.

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