By Darren Griffiths

Digital Nomad Desires: Taking a Break From Travel in Ubud, Bali

16th April 2017

Last updated on April 25th, 2017 at 07:11 am

It’s been while since we’ve published a Digital Nomad Desires post. We’ve been having too much fun travelling around South East Asia so there’s been little time to dedicate to our mission to make money online.  As we’ve mentioned before, travelling and blogging at the same time is seriously hard. Any downtime we have is spent writing and spreading the word on social media, so there’s not even time to experiment with new ways to monetize the blog since making our first $150.

In the background, we’ve had a couple of other paid sponsored posts and a sponsored Instagram photo, but that’s it so far. These have been clients that have come directly to us. If we had the time to reach out to other potential clients then the list may have been longer.

We’re Still Getting Free Stuff!

Digital Nomad Desires Finding Beyond

At one of our many free accommodation stays in Java

In our previous Digital Nomad Desires post, we revealed how we were at least starting to get some complimentary rewards for our work on Finding Beyond. In exchange for coverage on our website and social media channels, we’ve been able to get some great free accommodation and tours. This is as good as money while we’re on the road so it’s saved us a decent amount of cash. We’re pleased to say that it’s continued since writing that post and we’ve enjoyed more complimentary stays throughout Java and Bali. Sometimes in places that we could never usually afford so have been travelling in style! 🙂

Our Plans While In Bali

Digital Nomad Desires Finding Beyond

Enjoying a Villa Origami in Seminyak, Bali, with our friends

We’re still in Bali, enjoying the company of four friends from home while they’re on vacation. We haven’t seen them since July last year so we’re making the most of this time. This is the first occasion that anyone from home has visited us on our travels so we’re loving every minute of it.

Once our friends have gone home, we’ll be taking a small break from travelling. After three months of constant exploration through Malaysia, Philippines, Java and Bali, we feel like staying in one place for a while. We’ve enjoyed the past three months but we need to dedicate some time to making money.

The plan is to rent a place in Bali for a few weeks. In Ubud to be specific. Like Chiang Mai in Thailand, Ubud in Bali is another popular destination for digital nomads and other long-term travellers. Not only popular to visit, but also to live for a longer temporary period of time. Bali’s low cost of living helps people like us live a tropical island lifestyle without breaking the bank.

Building A New Website For An Online Content Writing Agency

Digital Nomad Desires Finding Beyond

Our poolside office in Bali

So how will we spend our time in Ubud? I’d like an excuse to build another WordPress website, so I’ve got this crazy idea to start a little online content writing agency. I’ve actually had the idea in the back of my head since before we left in August last year. I was inspired by a couple of travel bloggers called ‘Next Stop Who Knows’, who run a similar kind of business.

You may or may not know this, but the reason for launching Finding Beyond was never to become successful full-time travel bloggers. It was more about learning new skills, being part of a community, keeping friends/family up to date with our adventures and to give us a purpose while we travel. I was keen to make the most of our new found freedom from working 9am-6pm. The idea of going on another massively long vacation and returning home to start all over again didn’t sit right with me. We’ve been lucky enough to experience that a few times in our lifetime already.

We’re now at that point where the blog has definitely given us an artillery of new skills. Skills that we’d like to use for something other than just travel blogging. Not so long ago, I thought about trying to get some freelance writing work, but the thing is, I not 100% sure if I want to go down that road. 

Digital Nomad Desires Finding Beyond

Bali road trip in our jeep 4×4!

So I’ve got this idea to start collating some excellent content writers, build a website, social media pages and try to reach out to as many potential clients as I can with the hope of getting some content writing business. I could then divide the work up between us and our writers. 

I’m keen to not go down the road of a soul-less, transactional web platform like Upwork and Copyify. There are too many of them already and most people I speak to hate using them. I’d be using my experience of working at media agencies back home in London to build a boutique company that can provide a more personal customer service experience than those previously mentioned web platforms.

I know it’s a competitive market but I’m up for giving it a go. One thing we’ve learnt is that all online business is competitive and already saturated so it’s never going to be easy. We knew this when launching Finding Beyond but that didn’t stop us trying with some success at monetizing it after just 6 months.

I’m Right At The Start Of Exploring This Idea

Digital Nomad Desires Finding Beyond

Working from a jungle resort in Bali

I’ve got some further research to do and decisions to make before giving myself the green light. Like with every new business, there’s a chance that it won’t work but I’m sure we’d learn a lot in the process of setting it up. More skills that could inspire us to try something else in the future. 

Like I mentioned earlier in this post, I need an excuse to build another WordPress website. It’ll give me a chance to build a site with all the knowledge I’ve picked up from the building and running Finding Beyond. Finding Beyond was the first website I had ever set up so I, of course, made some mistakes which I hope not to make again when building our content writing agency website.

Once I have two sites under my belt and even more SEO knowledge, I may be able to offer WordPress website assistance or even full WordPress website design. It could turn into another little income stream later down the line. Then there’s Shelley priceless knowledge of social media. Many companies could be willing to pay for her well-researched social media expertise. These are all ideas we’d like to explore and hopefully put into action during our time in Ubud. Fingers crossed we’re not too distracted by our villa’s pool and amazing nearby landscape! 🙂

We’ve Already Found An Ubud Villa!

Digital Nomad Desires Finding Beyond

Taking a break with friends at Beautiful Villa Bali in Seminyak

At the moment we’ve committed to just 6 weeks in Ubud. We’ve already found a little place in a small village 4km from Ubud centre. It’s a cosy little villa overlooking awesome green rice fields. We’ll share some photos etc when we move in later this month!

While all these ideas are being explored, our blog will continue to publish posts about our travels and other nomadic experiences. We’ve dedicated a lot of our time into building Finding Beyond so we’re not about to give it up anytime soon. We’ll continue to grow it so maybe one day it’ll be another steady income stream to support our digital nomad lifestyle.

Are you a freelance writer looking for work? In travel or another sector? We’d love you to email us your details by visiting our Contact Us page.  

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After 3 months of continual travelling, we're taking a break in Bali to concentrate on our Digital Nomad mission. See our plans for the next few weeks.