Patti’s Saga of an RV Rookie: How to Make Steady Money Tutoring Online from Your RV or Stick House.

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November 8, 2011

OK, I’ll tell you straight out that in order to tutor online from your RV, you need minimally a Bachelor’s degree, and most often, tutoring companies prefer a Master’s. And the pay is nothing to write home about, so if these facts already have you snorting in annoyance, stop reading. I’ll still think you are wonderful.

But for those of you still interested in working as on online tutor (or think your adult kids or friends might be), it’s a great way to earn extra cash, while slopping down coffee on your sofa wearing the world’s greatest bra: a sweatshirt. Oh guys..sorry, forgot you were there for a minute. Here’s the skinny:

• There are several online tutoring services including, Growing,,, and
• Some companies consider tutors as employees, thus take out taxes. I prefer that to having to deal with taxes myself. Some companies consider tutors as independent contractors, meaning tutors have to deal with their own taxes. This is not a huge deal, but it matters to me so I chose a company that takes out taxes for me.

I’ve been tutoring in an online writing lab for college students for over two years now. I’ll share the pros and the cons:

1. The pay ranges from $11-$15 an hour depending on your degrees, experience, and the company you choose. But hey, you know you’re just sitting around anyway, so what’s the big deal?
2. It took me several months to “get the hang of it.” There is a highly defined structure involved in the tutoring responses that is challenging and rigorous. It was good for my brain, shall we say.
3. Your sessions are timed, which adds pressure. You need to be both good and fast.

1. It feels good to help motivated college students. Many of them are new to expectations of academic writing. Many of them are also new to the concept of working hard as opposed to, say, when they were middle or high school. I recall many of my students suffering from extreme…uh… lack of motivation during those years.
2. The work itself is challenging. It is not easy on any level. But I like it; it’s cerebral, and involves customizing elements of writing to each student’s paper.
3. True, the pay is not stellar, but you would be amazed how those hours add up to noteworthy paychecks each month!
4. You get to choose your own schedule each semester and the number of hours you wish to work.
5. You can get substitutes if you need, and you can pick up additional work from other tutors.
6. The company frequently has “add calls.” This means more tutors are needed during busy times so there are multiple opportunities to earn extra income in addition to your regular schedule.
7. I LOVE being able to sit in my recliner and work in my jammies! Last summer I sat outside our Winnebago and worked under the awning. Now I’m sitting in front of a huge window looking at Whitefish’s Big Mountain ski resort while I work. Incredible!
8. I truly love writing, playing with words, and helping students who actually give a rip to form and express logical thoughts. I am contributing to the success of students who value advanced education and I feel good about my role in all of it.
9. The support at my company is awesome. The people are really great and are there for the tutors.

Online tutoring may not be everyone’s cup of tea. However, it works well for me, and based on the numbers of people who have stayed with it for several years, it seems to work for others, as well. You might give it a thought.

Happy tales,


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  1. Hi Diane, glad you like the idea of online tutoring. It probably doesn’t pay as well as online teaching, but there is less work….so maybe it evens out!

    But it’s cool that both can be done from an RV!

    Happy tales,


  2. Love this Patti–great idea! I’m set up to teach through Kaplan University online, but have not yet taught my first course for them. Love the idea of tutoring! I like the idea of not having to deal with taxes as well. Can you let me know which company takes them out for you? Thanks, great article!