Quick Cash Travel Photography

Published on July 22nd, 2012 | by stephen


How to Sell Your Travel Photos as Stock Images

For those with a good eye and a half-decent camera, it is possible to make some cash by selling your best travel snaps as stock images.

Selling to magazines and newspapers is next to impossible without being a professional and having connections. Stock photo sites act as middle-men to broker deals between travel photographers and media giants. Creating a profile is fairly simple and you get a commission for every photo sold.

The most professional agencies are of GettyCorbis and JupiterMedia. However, we think most amateur photographers have a better shot at making sales on ‘micro-stock’ agencies like iStockPhotoShutterStock, and Big Stock Photo as they are less elite. When uploading your pictures make sure to tick ‘non-exclusive’ this means you can display them on different stock sites at the same time.


Payment on Shutterstock works on an incremental scale. So the more of a particular photo you sell, the greater the value per sale. The starting price is $0.25 per image so it can take a while to build up any decent cash.


iStockphoto offers larger commissions if you tick the ‘exclusive’ box when uploading your pictures. This gives you more cash with every sale but limits your exposure so the money might be longer in the coming. If you have a truly extraordinary photograph, iStockphoto puts it into it’s special program called Vetta which helps boost sales.


Big Stock Photo offers the high commission rate of 50% meaning you’ll earn between $0.50 and $3 for every photo sold. Pay-outs are done electronically but you need to acculumiate at least $50 before you can cash out. They organize their images by what is in demand which gives you an indication of what photos will sell best.


Stockxpert used to be a prominent micro-stock agency until it was bought out by stock giant Jupiter. They offer 50% commissions on all credit purchases and pay electronically through Paypal and Moneybookers, which is handy for travellers. Affiliate programs, such as links to websites and referrals, can boost your earnings.

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    Start To Run gives you all the tools you need to run away from your everyday life and see the world on your terms. With our quick-to-read guides we give you plenty of ideas on how to make and save money abroad. From teaching, to writing, and everything in between it's our aim to try and cover all possible options to make living and travelling full-time a reality.