Welcome! My name is Nicole Sunderland from Eatlivetraveldrink and you can find all the answers to your questions from my TikTok videos here.
Learn from me: working as a photographer, blogger and social media influencer in the travel space online
One of the most asked questions on TikTok, Instagram, email, and other social channels is “how do you get paid to see the world?” and “how do you afford to travel so much?”
Simply put, I built an online business in photography, blogging and social media and now I work with some of the biggest brands in the world. Some of my repeat clients include Ritz-Carlton, Marriott, Norwegian Cruise Line, Allianz Travel Insurance, Four Seasons, and so on. I am hired for a variety of different things that can include: photography, consulting, social media promotions (I will always disclose paid partnerships), blog posts, posts on other social media channels, and now – TikTok content!
I have been extremely fortunate to visit all 50 states in the USA, 44 countries and five continents. I have no plans of leaving this career either, I am expanding as we speak.
I am not actually paid to just travel – my clients are global and pay me to visit and create content for them in some way. In a typical year I travel about 50-60% of the time. However, I want to note that I do pay for a lot of my own travel. I see it as an investment back into my business.
If all my trips were sponsored, I would be a walking advertisement, and I never want to be that person. Additionally, I think paying for about 50% of my travel keeps me honest and unbiased. When a hotel or destination does not know you are in town, you get to make sure the standards are still met. It’s like being a secret shopper without being paid.
Second most asked question is “can you teach me to do this?” Absolutely. What is ice about an online career is that it doesn’t cost much money to get started. You could technically do it for free. I do offer a variety of consulting services, with the most popular being a 60 minute phone call. You can book me by just sending me an email: email@example.com
Third most asked question is about how much money I make. While I find this to be rude, I can understand the curiosity behind it. This is a relatively new career path for many and when I got into it five years ago, it was really new. So it is always evolving.
Let’s look at some numbers:
- Annually I make 6 figures from this business
- Jobs are all priced different. My highest paid contract to date was $40,000
- My highest paid photography gig was $10,000
- I aim to make around $10,000 per month on average through all my channels and blogs
- I get paid posts on these channels: primary Instagram, food Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and so on.
I grew up poor and I am still not rich by any standard. Maybe rich in life experiences, but not financially. If you had told me five years ago that my dreams of traveling the world and visiting Bora Bora (which I was able to pay for myself) would happen, I would have laughed. I expected to visit Bora Bora when I retired after a lifetime of saving.
This business I built affords me all these travels and this life. But it isn’t as easy as just posting photos and videos – there is so much more. I never take a day of it for granted and love working 12+ hour days. It is worth it to me to do what I do.
Bora Bora – French Polynesia – Tahiti – Moorea Info
I often get the same questions from you guys about French Polynesia, Bora Bora and Moorea specifically. Here are some of those top answers:
How much does it cost to go to Bora Bora?
There are many factors at play when asking this question. Upfront, you should know that Tahiti in general is a very remote destination in the south pacific and Bora Bora is tailored primarily with luxury resorts. That does not mean you can’t find a deal, I am just trying to manage expectations.
What I paid for my two week trip (inclusive of everything for two people) around Tahiti is about $18,000 USD. You can read more here about the breakdowns.
When planning your trip, you will want to consider when the best time to visit Bora Bora is and that will ultimately drive some of the price as well.
Other posts from my Tahiti trip:
- Conrad Bora Bora Penthouse
- Four Seasons Resort
- Things to do in Moorea
- Things to do in Tahiti
- Bora Bora facts
- Tahiti Facts
What is there to do in Bora Bora other than overwater bungalows?
I understand a lot of people only show relaxing photos or aerials of the overwater bungalows and I believe it is to show you how beautiful the destination is. Truth be told, there is plenty to do there. Many people visit on their honeymoons and take a slower approach to their visit, but you can check out my guide on things to do in Bora Bora to help plan your trip.
Equipment + things do I use for my business
The nice thing about being a content creator and photographer is that I have built up my equipment over the years. Here is what I use most of the time.
For those just getting started in photography, I HIGHLY recommend this camera! I have used both this model and the one before it – and the photo output is amazing. I have even had photos from this camera featured in places like Travel and Leisure and Conde Nast!
While this is a beginner camera and you can set it to AUTO or SCENE modes, the quality is amazing. Even as an advanced photographer, I still use this camera all the time.
For underwater photos, I recommend this GoPro. I have used every GoPro since they came out and love that one the most.
For drone shots, I use this drone.
This is my everyday Canon camera. I have not updated this camera in years, so you can get it pretty cheap now, but it is a great camera. I will upgrade this camera at some point, but why fix something that isn’t broken, you know? I LOVE this camera and it works great.
Running a lot of accounts can get very busy. I found this content planner a few years ago and I swear by it. I use it every single day, week and month. It has helped me grow into a six figure business.
Bucket list travel
You may have found my TikTok by one of the many bucket lists I have added. I love to live my life with bucket lists in every vertical.
Here are some of these posts if you are looking for more information or lists:
Can I book travel for you?
In short, no. I am not a travel agent.
However, I book all my own travel and itineraries. If you would like to do a 30-60 minute consultation and plan the trip of your dreams and maximize your time and money, I can show you how to get the best deals and do it yourself. This consultations usually take an hour, sometimes more if you are planning a robust trip.
Just send me an email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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