You’re sipping a piña colada and lazing on golden-sanded shores. You’ve just finished work for the day and finally logged off. Now, it’s time to relax in some glorious haven before jetting off to the next place on your travel bucket list. Sure, it might all sound too good to be true, but, for digital nomads at least, this scene could be oh-so-familiar.
What is a Digital Nomad?
In a recent survey from MBO Partners State of Independence, 4.8 million Americans described themselves as digital nomads. The truth is that it can be applied to just about anybody who travels and works at the same time. They frequently move from place-to-place, never settling on one destination, AKA living the dream.
Step 1: Get a Remote Job
If traveling while you work sounds like bliss, you may be wondering how you can make it happen. The first step is landing a role that allows you to move around. Many digital nomads are freelancers who work for themselves. Of course, should you want to go down this route, it’s vital that you build a strong, stable client list first.
However, another, more secure way to go is to look for a remote role. Luckily, these job types are becoming more and more popular. A massive 43% of American employees had careers which allowed them to work remotely in 2016, according to a Gallup Report. That means that snapping up this kind of flexible role could be easier than you think.
Step 2: Choose Your Destination
You’ve decided to become a fully-fledged digital nomad. Next, comes the hard part – deciding where in the world to go. Nomad List, a crowdsourced database listing the best places to live and work, could have the answer. The site analyzes major cities around the world and looks at criteria such as the average cost of living, internet quality, fun and activities, and, perhaps most crucially, safety.
Topping the list are booming urban areas such as Canggu, Bangkok, Chiang Mai, and Buenos Aires. Of course, when you’ve chosen a place that suits you, it’s important to do a little research online and find out as much as possible. The more you know about the place and its culture, the easier it will be when you get there.
Step 3: Finalize the Minor Details
Once you’ve got the right role and found a city you’d like to visit, it’s time to hammer out those final details. Finding short-term lets can often be the hardest part, but you can get decent enough deals on Airbnb and Uniplaces. You will also need to pick a co-working space you can use while you’re abroad. Not only is a workspace a great place to meet fellow nomads, but it will also keep you sane when you have deadlines to hit. Apps like Croissant allow you to find flexible spaces and book online ahead of time.
If all of the above sounds like a headache, there is another option. Travel companies, such as Remote Year and WiFi Tribe, can take care of everything from your accommodation and co-working space to flights, trips, and excursions. When you go with one of the package deals they offer, you will travel with a group of like-minded workers over the course of several months or even an entire year. Simple.
Step 4: Meeting Fellow Nomads
Let’s not beat around the bush – traveling to a foreign country alone is scary. Scratch that, it’s absolutely, positively terrifying. When you arrive, you’ll come up against the biggest obstacle of all. Perhaps for the first time in your adult life, you’re going to need to make friends. Thankfully, you won’t be alone for long. Here are some of the resources you can use:
Bumble BFF: The well-known dating app isn’t just for finding ‘the one.’ It actually has a friend-finding feature, too, called BFF. Create a profile and start swiping for new contacts in your area. Why not arrange a friend date?
Facebook Groups: Search groups for a ‘digital nomad’ community in your area. You should find that there are loads of options, including female-only groups. Of course, you should always put your safety first when meeting people online.
Meetup: Want to meet interesting people who share your interests? The Meetup app is the way to go. Once you’ve downloaded the app and set up a profile, you can start searching for groups in your area, such as wine and book clubs.
Ready to take the leap and become a digital nomad? If you’re filled with wanderlust but need to work to live, it’s the ideal solution. This brief guide should have given you an overview of the basics. However, it’s important to realize that there are many different ways you can make this lifestyle work for you. Start researching destinations and schemes today and see what you can find out. After all, there’s a great big world out there!