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Q&A – Etsy on the Road – Fulltime RV Traveling Lifestyle

Q&A – Etsy on the Road – Fulltime RV Traveling Lifestyle

When we created our vintage Etsy shop in 2014 we never expected it to be our sole source of income; much less support a life of fulltime traveling. Here we are – two years later – roaming around North America, living off of our Etsy revenue.

This week our Q&A series will answer the question:

How do you operate your Etsy shop from the road?

Making it Mobile

In the beginning our Etsy shop sold all things vintage – clothes, toys, books, furniture, and everything in between. We operated a corresponding booth at the local flea market, and also dabbled in selling items on Craigslist.

Once we began preparing for “life on the road,” we knew we’d need to downsize our shop if we wanted to keep it up and running. We created a rule to operate by; if we want to sell it, it must ship in a standard rigid-mailer envelope.

This rule eliminated 90% of our items and shifted our focus to antique maps and prints.

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Storing our Products & Materials

Since maps are thin & flat, it doesn’t take much room to store our items. We keep all 3000 of  them protected and filed in a moisture-proof plastic crate. We use a second crate for our shipping materials.

These two crates are heavy, but not in the way.

Photographing

Taking high quality photographs of our products is a necessity. Our camper has many windows, creating a controlled natural lighting environment. We use a wooden backdrop to give the images warmth. If we find a rustic table at a campground or park, we’ll take the pictures outside to add some variety to the backdrops.

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Listing

Listing our items is the most time consuming process of our shop. We like to do this task in small bursts once a month. If its a rainy stretch of days, we’ll hunker down and list 200 items so when the sun comes back out we can enjoy the outdoors.

Shipping

We have orders come in everyday and like to ship them as quickly as possible. Because we don’t travel with a printer, we write all of the envelopes by hand and mail them at the post office counter.

Every town, even the smallest desert community, has an easy-to-access post office. We enjoy visiting the post offices across America; it gives us a great sense of the area.

Restocking

This is, by far, the highlight of our job. We love hunting thrift stores, estate sale, and auctions in search for the perfect vintage finds.

As we travel America, we’re always discovering new thrifting opportunities. We’ve found bundles of 1960s Playboys in Yuma, Pee Wee Herman memorabilia in Desert Hot Springs, and car advertisements from the 1940s in Joshua Tree.

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Etsy Lets Us Be Mobile

Overall, Etsy has helped us create income as we live a nomadic life. The success wasn’t overnight, and it took hundreds of hours of work, but the result has created location-independence!

Thanks for reading our blog. Help support our mission – to live freely and deliberately – by checking out our Etsy store or shopping Amazon through our link.

And, don’t forget to sign up for our monthly newsletter 🙂

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How To Make Money On The Road - Making Money and Traveling

Sunday 20th of January 2019

[…] goods or have an eye for things of value, you can make money on the road selling on Etsy. My friends Kyle and Olivia from Drivin & Vibin got started out selling on Etsy. They started selling vintage clothes, books, toys, and furniture – but to make their […]

Christine

Wednesday 26th of April 2017

Love watching and reading your blog. I too have just bought a vintage trailer and am in the process of redoing it and hitting the road with my business. Since just starting to read your blog I am sure this question has already been asked, but what do you do for internet service, library, coffee shops etc? How often do you check your Etsy shop? Thanks, Christine

drivinandvibin

Wednesday 26th of April 2017

We have internet on our phones and carry two hot spots from different providers. It costs us about $200/month

Mandy Lea Photo

Wednesday 14th of December 2016

Very nice! Love a peek into others worlds. May our paths cross auspiciously.

Parkit

Monday 12th of December 2016

Thank you for your posts and videos. They help us plan our full time RV adventure in the future. I really enjoy your blog and I have nominated you for the Sunshine Blogger Award. Check out the details here: https://luvthatmouse.wordpress.com/2016/12/12/the-sunshine-blogger-award/

michael

Friday 9th of December 2016

still my eyes for my future, you 3 are great!

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