In today’s world, having a skill set that practically guarantees the ability to earn a good living is a definite plus. There are some jobs that simply can’t be replaced by computers and that will always be in demand. Welding is one such job. Skilled welders can always find work in a variety of industries across the country and around the world, earning a good living and even getting paid to travel from job to job.
Welding is a skill that can be learned and refined without having to invest a great deal of time and money in formal training. While there are programs designed to train new welders in a year or less, some welders are able to get their training on the job. Some even turn a welding hobby into a career. Having certification from one or more accredited institutions or programs can certainly bolster your profile, but isn’t always necessary to get your foot in the door. As with other positions for skilled craftsmen, real-world experience is the most valuable part of any welder’s resumé.
When most of us think of welders, we think of surface (above ground) welding. Welding also happens underwater. Underwater welding is a tougher field to enter and requires tons of practical experience across many disciplines. It also can be dangerous work, but pays well for those who have what it takes. Underwater welders can get to spend a great deal of time travelling and exploring depths most of us will never see.
If you prefer to stay topside but still want that sense of adventure, you’re in luck. Surface welding offers many opportunities for travel, and travelling welders tend to be well paid for their time on the road. Below, we’ll look at a few of the opportunities that await a skilled welder with a case of wanderlust.
The oil and gas industry uses welders to build and repair pipelines, among other things. Since pipelines travel long distances, so do the welders working on them. Pipeline work can be a great way to stay on the move if being in one place for too long doesn’t suit you.
If life at sea has always been a dream, consider working on board either cargo or passenger ships. Both allow you to live on the water and spend time in ports of call in various exotic locations.
If you’d rather build ships than repair them, the shipbuilding industry, civilian and military, always has a need for skilled welders. Jobs can last weeks, months, or even years depending on the type and number of ships being built.
In addition to helping build battleships, the military uses independently-contracted welders for other support work. This work could include setting up temporary military facilities and repairing or retrofitting military vehicles. Such jobs could be stateside or halfway around the world.
Manufacturers with large production plants often have scheduled shutdowns for routine maintenance and repairs. These shutdowns can last anywhere from a few days to a few months. Welders are needed to make sure that high-dollar essential equipment stays productive.
If you are into auto racing, honing your craft to specialize in auto work can land you job building or repairing race cars. Most racing teams even have welders as part of the pit crew.
Whether you’re looking to sleep in your own bed every night or become a wanderer, becoming a skilled welder is a way to ensure employability. Finding a fixed welding job that involves travel or working as a travelling independent contractor can help you get paid, handsomely at times, to see the world.