Pursuing a career, or even a part time job in the adventure travel industry just might be one of the best financial and personal investments you could make. This industry is booming and offers hidden perks hard to come by in a traditional career. While the opportunities in this field are endless, this post is going to focus on the benefits of being an adventure travel guide or instructor (scuba instructor, backcountry skiing guide, hunting guide, sky diving instructor, etc).
This industry is huge, valued at $263 billion in 2012 (source) which doesn’t even take into account the $82 billion (source) spent on related gear, apparel and accessories! Those numbers are even more impressive when you take into account the market’s growth of 65% from 2009 and 2012. To put that in perspective, cruise tourism is valued at $119.9 billion and showed a growth of 68% over 10 years, 2004 – 2014.
2) Job security
Automation is quickly disrupting industries across the board and it’s just getting started. McKinsey & Company says, “…our research suggests that as many as 45 percent of the activities individuals are paid to perform can be automated” (source). Self-driving cars, computer aided surgeries, 3d printers and the list goes on. So how does this apply to the adventure travel industry?
People opt for adventure travel because they want a break from their digital lives. The outdoors gives them a chance to reconnect with nature and spend quality time with friends and family. By working as a guide you are providing a very personal and hands on experience; something automation will never be able to replace.
3) Side hustle
Just like Uber says, “Get your side hustle on”. Having a side hustle is a great way to diversify your income while maintaining the safety and security of your full-time job. By working as a guide, you can do something you love while creating your own schedule and earning additional income. That’s a pretty sweet deal!
4) Giving back to others
Giving back is good, you’re a good person, go do good things! Along with giving your clients an education you’re also creating priceless memories for them. Taking a father and daughter out on a fishing trip could easily become an experience they will talk about for the rest of their lives. The lessons you teach your students could be ones that are passed on for generations.
5) Stay active
“Today, the average office worker sits for about 10 hours.” (source)
With today’s office culture it’s easier than ever to live a sedentary life, and those hours sitting in an office chair are slowly killing you.
“A study published in the journal Diabetologia in November 2012 analyzed the results of 18 studies with a total of nearly 800,000 participants. When comparing people who spent the most time sitting with those who spent the least time, researchers found increases in the risks of diabetes (112%), cardiovascular events (147%), death from cardiovascular causes (90%) and death from all causes (49%).” (source)
To put it another way, picking up an adventurous job makes you a healthier person!
6) Work in beautiful places
Because adventure travel doesn’t occur in the great indoors. Rivers, beaches, mountains, prairies, forests, deserts or the bottom of the ocean – you can take your pick. Each landscape provides different opportunities and office views that can’t be topped.
7) Get paid to travel
The explosive growth of adventure travel creates a higher demand for skilled guides around the globe. These career opportunities have “offices” in almost every country. Master your craft, pack your bags, and take your skills on the road.