With so many pictures of people on Instagram working while traveling, most people have taken an interest to find out what is a digital nomad. Digital nomad living comes with the freedom to work where and when you want to visit incredible places and learn from different cultures. You may be working in your office one day and at the beach in the Bahamas the next day. For this reason, it is not surprising to know that most people sought after being digital nomads. However, digital nomadism is not for everyone, and it requires different skills to remote work successfully.
What is a Digital Nomad?
A Digital Nomad is a remote worker who travels from one location to another and work using technology. Often, digital nomads work in co-working spaces, coffee shops, public libraries, beaches, or in hotel rooms. Digital nomads work remotely and rely on technology and communication tools to fund their travels. Their nomad lifestyle involves moving from one city or country to another while remaining connected digitally.
There are different types of digital nomads, including those who fly from country to country and those who move about their country by RV or campervan. Some choose to stay in one location for a while before moving, while others travel more frequently. A recent study by Citrix shows that 50% of the world’s workforce will be remote employees working out of office by 2020. This means that more people realize that it is possible to work and travel at the same time.
A digital nomad can make nearly $50,000 per year. Hence, they can easily fund their travel to a beach in the Bahamas, a café in France, or an office share in Australia.
Is Digital Nomad the Right Path for You?
Before getting started on being a Digital Nomad, you first need to analyze whether it is right for you. While being a digital nomad can be very rewarding, it can also be quite challenging, especially if you are just getting started. To have a fulfilling life on the road, you need to be organized and very disciplined. You can also get lonely and work more hours than the traditional employees in some instances. Hence, it is advisable to note down its pros and cons and decide whether this is the right path for you.
9 Steps on How to Be A Digital Nomad
Wondering how to become a digital nomad? Most people aspire to be digital nomads but have no idea how to get started. Outlined below ate 9 steps on how to become a digital nomad.
Cut on Location Ties and Expenses
If you are thinking of becoming a Digital Nomad, you need to cut ties with the things that hold you to one location. You also need to get rid of unnecessary expenses that you won’t need in your new lifestyle. Get rid of expenses like subscription services and gym membership since you won’t need them while on the road. You can also consider selling your car and save on gas, insurance, registration, and maintenance.
If you have debts, come up with a plan to pay them to eliminate stress and entirely focus on your work and travel. This is particularly true for credit card debt because of the high-interest rates.
Be Part of a Digital Nomad Community
Truth be told, being a Digital Nomad can be very lonely. Hence, you need to connect with other travelers to mitigate that feeling. Besides, connecting with other like-minded individuals can help you grow as a digital nomad and expose you to new business opportunities.
If you want to make partnerships and friendships with other digital nomads, consider joining digital nomad communities like Nomadlist and Couchsurfing. Reddit digital nomad is another community about digital nomads. In these communities, you will get to connect with fellow nomads who can suggest the best destinations and give you tips for working on the road.
They can also ask questions regarding becoming a digital nomad, especially if you are new to the digital nomad lifestyle. Plus, this is an excellent way to form friendships and partnerships. You can also achieve this by purchasing phone accessories from a digital nomad corner.
Identify Your Skills
Before you get started as a Digital Nomad, you first need to identify which skills you already have. Identify your skills and see whether they can be used to start an online business. Basically, your income stream will depend on your skill, knowledge, and willingness to take risks. Common remote work skills that you can monetize include marketing, writing, photography, and computer design. Most digital nomads also make a living teaching English online. Find a freelance gig or remote work that will get you started and help you grow your business.
Whatever your skills are, take time to build on them to increase your chances of getting higher-paying digital nomad jobs. Most importantly, you should spruce up your communication and technology skills since you will use them to successfully manage your work from any location. You should also keep in mind that learning a new skill may take time. Luckily, there are free resources online that you can take advantage of to learn a new skill to make passive income.
Become a Freelancer
Now that you have identified skills that will help you monetize online; the next step is to find a freelancing job that is remote or location independent. There are numerous freelancing gigs that you can choose from, including virtual assistants, consultants, writers, editors, photographers, and more. Freelance jobs are usually in the categories of technology, customer service, and support jobs.
Additionally, there are many remote specific job sites online that can help you locate freelance gigs with ease. Such sites include Upwork, RemoteOk, and We Work Remotely. Most of these remote sites allow you to search for freelance gigs based on skill and industry.
Working or Studying Abroad
If you find it hard to get a freelance job, you can try looking for a location-based job. Alternatively, you can study abroad as you decide whether working on the road will work best for you. Of course, taking this path means that your journey to digital nomadism will take longer.
Nonetheless, the risk of failure is considerably lower than that of freelancing. However, if you take this route, it’s essential to get a visa or resident permit. You can also ask your boss to work on the road if you are currently working on a location-based job. To do this successfully, you need to do the right planning and have excellent communication skills.
Establish Your Business
Once you have identified and developed your skills, it is now time to build your online business. The last thing you want is to run out of money in a foreign destination. You want to ensure that your freelance business will generate enough passive income to sustain you on the road.
One way to build your online business is by promoting it online on social media platforms. You can also create your website to build your business and reach a wider audience. Alternatively, you can purchase an online business that is already established from websites like Flippa.
Know Your First Destination
Once your income stream has grown, it is now time to decide on your first destination. However, it can be daunting to choose the right destination, given that there are so many places to choose from. Indeed, a digital nomad could be flying to Tokyo and then to Thailand the next week. Hence, you need to decide on your destination based on your priorities, income, and needs. You also need to evaluate internet access and the cost of living. Most digital nomads opt to go to certain countries because of their low cost of living.
You want to ensure that you can afford the food, rent, and entertainment of the destination you choose. Nonetheless, you still want to ensure that the destination offers the activities and adventures you are after. Suppose you are uncertain about the right destination for your digital nomad goals, head on to NomadList. This platform will offer suggestions for the best destination based on cost, safety, internet speed, fun, activities, and climate.
Decide How You Want to Live
Once you get to your destination, you need to decide the type of accommodation right for you. Finding the right accommodation will depend on your budget and how long you plan to stay at your destination. Most digital nomads opt for Airbnb, where they rent an apartment for a month or two. This is an ideal option for those who prefer a quiet place for themselves. After short-term accommodation or want to share space with others to kill boredom, find a hotel or hostel.
Booking.com is an excellent resource for finding for locating the best hostel and hotel in your area. Alternatively, you can use Coliving.com to help you find long term accommodation that you can share with other digital nomads worldwide. You can opt for hotels and homestays if you want added services like meal and laundry services. You simply need to decide how you live, and you will find accommodation that meets your needs.
Create a Plan and Adhere to It
When pursuing the digital nomad lifestyle, you should train yourself to create a plan and stick to it. You need to set clear goals and plans that outline your destination, budget, and expectations, the period of your stay, and what you should do to make it all happen. Get organized and choose a routine for each day. By following it, you can live a comfortable and stress-free travel life as a Digital Nomad. The other thing is to plan for the worst scenario, especially since you will be living abroad. It is vital to have multiple back-up plans to handle any emergencies that may arise.
For instance, you should be aware of your destination’s healthcare and insurance plans and how your health issues can be addressed. Otherwise, you may get stuck in a foreign country without knowing what to do.
Best 8 Best Jobs for Digital Nomads
Now that you know the steps on how to be a digital nomad lets us now explore the best jobs that allow you to work as you travel.
Writers are very crucial in the digital landscape, particularly in the content creation niche. There are numerous freelance gigs and contracted jobs for a digital nomad writer on the internet. As long as you have good writing skills, you can choose to work for an agency and write for different clients or focus on writing for a particular company.
If you have administrative, creative, financial, or technical skills, virtual assistants may be the job. This job is comprehensive, and it includes offering different support services to the CEO and other staff. Examples of digital nomad virtual assistants’ services include digital marketing, editing services, general clerical skills, data mining, or budget management.
Web designers are some of the most popular digital nomads in the market. Their work entails creating and designing web pages for their clients. Some may even go-ahead to do website upkeep and management.
Search Engine Optimization or SEO helps websites to rank competitively in search engines like Google. It helps websites to maintain visibility and reach their target audience. Therefore, SEO specialists’ work helps companies use keywords relevant to their industry or brand to rank better.
The work of graphic designers is to design different digital images for their clients. To perform this job, one needs to have knowledge of graphic design software. Also, graphic designers may work with other creatives like website developers, branding agencies, and branding agencies to effectively perform their work.
These specialists teach students in digital classrooms via the internet. This is a great way to work as you travel because of the flexibility it offers.
Nowadays, it is elementary to access translation services on the internet. However, individuals who are after precise and high-quality translation services prefer to hire translators. The translators need to have fluency in the demand language and have access to a high-speed internet connection.
Videos are prominent in the online world, and most people hire professionals to edit their videos for them. A digital nomad video editor can do this job with great attention to detail, making their demand rise in the ever-increasing digital world.
3 Benefits of Being a Digital Nomad
There are many benefits of being a digital nomad. Some of the perks include:
Sense of Ownership
As a Digital Nomad, you will enjoy location independence and the freedom to work with flexible hours. You get to choose your own office setup, and you can schedule how to complete the day’s workload without worrying about your boss striding behind you. However, you will be motivated to be more productive and creative to get a continuous stream of income. Therefore, it not only gives you a sense of ownership but also motivates you.
Learn Different Languages
Knowing the language of the country, you choose as your destination is vital for a successful trip. The best thing about local independence is that you will be interacting with the local community and get to know their culture. Additionally, this provides excellent opportunities to learn their language.
Immersion in Different Cultures
Another benefit of being a digital nomad is that it immerses in different cultures, which may not be the case if you are just a regular traveler. Whether you choose to work in a local café, on the beach, or in a shared space, you are likely to meet with the locals and know more about their cultures.
Although the concept of becoming a Digital Nomad is still emerging, it is one of the most rewarding ways to live. However, this type of lifestyle is not without its downsides, and it requires preparation, discipline, and hard work. We hope that you find this article useful if you are looking to work your way around the world.