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  1. #1
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    touring and finding work

    so the idea is a few friends and i start off in Portland Maine this comming fall and bike down the east
    coast and continue threw the south to cali. not sure the route between use we know some people in
    the south so there will be some free places to stay but we are all around 23 and dont have alot of
    money. there is no dead line to this tour we may never come back just would like to hear some feed
    back on finding work on tour to get you that extra 400 miles or so.

  2. #2
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Look for fruit/veggie picking/packing jobs. Here in Australia there's something called the Harvest Trail, and a lot of people of all ages and backgrounds follow the harvest trail picking up work when fruit and veggies come ripe. I'm not sure if there's something similar in the US as well, but you might look into it.

  3. #3
    Senior Member pasopia's Avatar
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    Not to be a downer, but have you read a newspaper lately:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/10/bu...my/10jobs.html

    I would plan to bring some money with you.

  4. #4
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    we'll have money no doubt but would really like to have a good amount to either come home with or start over new no worries we will make it happen it takes weeks to starve

  5. #5
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    Good luck, you'll need it

  6. #6
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Here ... something to get you started:
    http://www.pickingjobs.com/
    http://www.anyworkanywhere.com/jobslist.php

    If you want temp jobs, that's the sort of thing to look for.

  7. #7
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    ^^^ It isn't impossible but the temp jobs are not hiring like they use to, at least not here in California. For example, any highschool kid use to be able to walk into a phone survey place and pretty much be hired on the spot and work as many hours as they wanted choosing their own schedule. Now they are rarely hiring and get far more applications than they have positions + few hours. Same situation for catering and other temp jobs

  8. #8
    mev
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    I haven't used it myself, but would be tempted to look at the "gigs" section of Craigslist.

  9. #9
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    you could go to ny and be a messanger! u get to ride, and its a job lol

  10. #10
    Member andrewnwi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mev View Post
    I haven't used it myself, but would be tempted to look at the "gigs" section of Craigslist.
    I've used it before. There was some basic labor jobs: move this here, that there kinda stuff; some dry-walling (but I've got the exp.); and of course, painting etc, etc. Not too bad of an idea. Sometimes you can find some legit stuff.

  11. #11
    Member andrewnwi's Avatar
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    I've always wanted a messenger job!

  12. #12
    Senior Member wheel's Avatar
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    Good luck The whole West Coast in a depression. I can see this was well thought out.
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  13. #13
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    You might want to consider companies like this as well ...

    http://www1.collegepro.com/sb.cn

  14. #14
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    Don't listen to any of the neg head replies, just go and do it. If you wait until things are "right" (what ever that means) you won't go. As long as you are young (you are) and can move and have some balls just load up and hit the road. Lots of guys have and, oddly enough, things work out and nobody dies.
    Buy and read "Travels with Lucy" I've met this guy and he is just an older stoner who took a Walmart bike and kiddy trailer and started heading west from Florida with no plans, his dog (Lucy) and almost no money. He wrote a great book about it. My town , St aug fl, is at the east end of the cross country route called the southern tier. Last year an 82 year old guy made the x-country trip, camped most of the way and did great. A few month later I met a guy maybe 28 or so who did the trip on a hybrid towing a trailer in 45 days and he had some wonderful experiences to share.

    Many years ago I rode across the USA with no plans, maps GPS or cell phone, I was too dumb to be worried and got fed and found places to sleep and was given tires etc when I needed them. Things work out and, as a friend of mine always says "they can kill ya but they can't eat ya"
    I don't know what it means but it sounds good. :>)

    Hey, and if you make it to St Aug Fl I'll give you a place to stay and buy you a Guiness.

    Mike
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  15. #15
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    The thing is, kids like the OP are willing to take the jobs that the middle-aged professionals don't want ... the temporary, "low-class" stuff like fruit picking, casual labour, etc. And you only need a day's work here and there to get you enough money for the next few days or week or so. And if you can get into a fruit-picking/harvest type job, you'll likely be there for about 6 weeks ... 6 weeks of very hard work ... and you can make enough money to last you for the next 6 weeks or so.

    Another suggestion, if the OP or any of his friends have any musical talent at all, is busking.

  16. #16
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    Stop in implement dealers or feed/farm stores and ask about farmers looking for help- hay crews, fence crews, barn painting, etc.
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  17. #17
    totally louche Bekologist's Avatar
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    a tribe of bicyclists in need of money will be much more difficult to keep on the road than a solo bicyclist in need of money. especially in todays economy-

    In todays' economy, casual pickup work will be tough to come by.

    If a crewe of 20 somethings rolled into a day labor lot and took a bunch of work the 'regular' jobbers should have gotten will likely find their bikes vandalized at end of day when returning to the labor lot.

    food for thought.

    good luck.
    "Evidence, anecdote and methodology all support planning for roadway bike traffic."

  18. #18
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    thanks bikemike and machka the encouragement is great! and to clear things up there will be three of us not 20 and who needs alot of planning if theres no dead line and only adventure sought out!

  19. #19
    Senior Member wheel's Avatar
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    Really do they even know where the homeless shelters are (the good ones)? Digging ditches and picking fruit for 5 bucks an hour? I haven't had a full time job in 2 years. No way am I digging ditches. Because after 40 dollars and 8 hours latter it sucks. 60 recent jobs had 500 applicants. Yes but some adventures turn out to be nothing more than a required hand out from the public. Yea go for it, I am sure you will have the time of your life. Can't wait to hear about your adventure.
    Last edited by wheel; 01-14-10 at 02:05 AM.
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  20. #20
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    "who needs alot of planning if theres no dead line and only adventure sought out!"

    very true! A trip like this should be done with minimal planning, the adventure will just unfold on it's own. We live in a big country that you are free to move about as you desire. You may very well encounter a person, place or thing that will change your life. There is really nothing to fear out there the risks are the same when you are cresting a pass in Colorado or sitting on a couch at home.

    I have found people are friendly, interested in what you are doing and very helpful. I have had lunch bought for me in New Mexico, dinner in Big Pine CA, and had a free house and workshop in Denver for an evening.

    And ,once again, read "Travels with Lucy"..if this guy can do it anyone can.

    Mike
    "ready to navigate"

  21. #21
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    Quick story: This fall I did a similar tour to what you're proposing. I rode from Maine to New Orleans. I visited bike co-ops along the way and got a few leads on low paying fun jobs. When I was in Mississippi on the Natchez Trace I met up with a group of 20-somethings who were also riding to New Orleans. I befriended them and was offered a job selling Christmas trees in Queens, NY over these holidays. I didn't take them up on the offer, but it demonstrates the opportunities that are out there if you're looking. I love combining a job search with my bike touring!

  22. #22
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wheel View Post
    Really do they even know where the homeless shelters are (the good ones)? Digging ditches and picking fruit for 5 bucks an hour? I haven't had a full time job in 2 years. No way am I digging ditches. Because after 40 dollars and 8 hours latter it sucks. 60 recent jobs had 500 applicants. Yes but some adventures turn out to be nothing more than a required hand out from the public. Yea go for it, I am sure you will have the time of your life. Can't wait to hear about your adventure.
    5 bucks an hour? I haven't seen a minimum wage that low since ... ohhhhh ... gotta think really hard here. Hmmmm .... I'm guessing probably about 1991.

    http://canadaonline.about.com/library/bl/blminwage.htm
    http://srv116.services.gc.ca/dimt-wi...pt2.aspx?dec=3


    The OP might consider coming over to Australia. He's young enough to get on the work and travel visa program ... and fruit picking/packing/sorting here goes for more like $10-$20/hour ... generally closer to the higher end of the scale. I just finished several weeks working in a cherry packing plant, and I can tell you from personal experience ... it pays very well. Better than my Engineering Technician jobs!!

    http://www.pickingjobs.com/job.php?jobid=20
    http://www.jobaroo.com/job-fruitpicking.html
    http://www.gadling.com/2009/06/16/wo...fruit-picking/


    OP ... it'll cost you some to get over here (airfare) but if you're willing to put in some hard work, you can follow the harvest trail here and likely do fairly well for yourself.

  23. #23
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    Nobody is going to pay that much in the states. We have immigrants who work for very cheap and often below minimum wage with no benefits

    And anybody who would work in those conditions by choice has a couple screws loose, not the ideal working environment but to each their own I guess

  24. #24
    Long Distance Cyclist Machka's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ubermensch84 View Post
    Nobody is going to pay that much in the states. We have immigrants who work for very cheap and often below minimum wage with no benefits

    And anybody who would work in those conditions by choice has a couple screws loose, not the ideal working environment but to each their own I guess
    Not the ideal work environment ... because of the low pay and lack of benefits in the US??

    Or

    Not the ideal work environment because working outside all day is hard work and can be a bit uncomfortable (in the case of fruit picking) ... or because standing all day long is hard work and can be a bit uncomfortable (in the case of fruit packing)?


    Just so you know ... Rowan has been working in an orchard full-time for about the past 4 years. Overall he enjoys the work, although obviously there are some good days and bad days. The people he works with are generally decent hard-working people who have families and "normal" lives.

    And, as I mentioned I just spend the cherry season doing cherry sorting and packing ... hard work, yes, but with a great group of friendly, intelligent people that would pass for office workers if you saw them in the street.

  25. #25
    Punk Rock Lives Roughstuff's Avatar
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    Hope to see ya along the way. I am leaving from western mass in April or May (depending on how quickly the winter breaks and the ground dries) and will also be touring, indefinitely. I am gonna try and make enough money stock trading (on my laptop) along the way to make the trip pay for itself. Not day trading of course...but enough of this and that to offset my expenses, which are rock solid minimal.

    roughstuff
    Electric car sales are on fire! :)

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