Natalie Sisson is a #1 bestselling author, podcaster, speaker and adventurer who believes everybody has the right to choose freedom in business and adventure in life. She’s on a mission to ensure 1,000,000+ entrepreneurs do just that by 2020 over at the Suitcase Entrepreneur.
Born in New Zealand, Natalie has built her multiple six figure business from her laptop over the last five years while living out of her suitcase, traveling to 70 countries and showing others how to build a profitable online freedom business that supports their ideal lifestyle through her definitive Freedom Plan program.
Read on to see the inner workings of Natalie’s career and business in this fascinating Financial Case Study.
In this series, we’re exploring the various careers of world travelers, and how they make ends meet financially while living abroad. Yes, financially sustainable full-time travel is possible!
This post was originally published in 2015. It has since been updated for accuracy of links and content.
How long have you been living/working on the road, and where have you traveled to?
5 years. 69 countries and counting (from when I was a toddler) and probably around 40 since my business started.
Please describe what you do for income.
I sell freedom. I show and teach people how to find their sweet spot, monetize themselves and create a business that supports their ideal lifestyle.
I have around six revenue streams that support my business and community.
How many hours per week do you work on average?
Depends on if I’m launching or exploring the world. Anywhere from 15-45. Typically around 20-25.
How much money do you make?
When I first started I made something like $16K in my first year in business and that was after making nothing for six months and going broke. The next year I made closer to $90K and in 2012 I broke the six figure mark. This year I’m on track for multiple six figures. The bulk of that income comes from my Freedom Plan Program, and then digital product sales. I’m sure my new Freedom Collective community membership will start to become influential soon too as a revenue stream.
Outside of this there’s my book, speaking and sponsorship, plus referral partner revenue.
Do you make enough money to support your lifestyle?
Absolutely. I’m a minimalist so I don’t really buy stuff but I spend money on experiences, travel, friends, family and my team as well as investing in me and personal growth.
What is your vision for the future of your lifestyle on the road?
Actually it’s changing since coming home to be with my Dad in hospital. It was all quite sudden but it’s flipped my perspective on sticking around and making a home base in New Zealand to spend quality time with family, be there for my parents and enjoy freedom in one place. I will still travel but my digital nomadic style has changed for now to spending more time in fewer places and creating a community on the ground as well as virtually.
Any advice for the aspiring traveler about living and working on the road and managing finances?
I’d say it’s smart to get a good handle on your basic daily living costs and a budget in place that you feel happy with – that’s not too restrictive so that it doesn’t take the fun out of those travel splurges you should make in those special moments.
If you’re looking at living your ideal lifestyle then consider how much you want to earn to support that and then set about making it happen – not by working harder but by creating more revenue streams to make it a reality and repurposing what you already have and have created where possible.