Digital Nomads Abroad-Latest News: I began my global solo travel as a teenager, However, now having worked remotely for a decade, I have quickly learned that this is not the same as being on perpetual vacation. While Bali and other distant tropical paradises are getting a lot of media, for American residents new to working remotely starting out within the US or nearby Mexico may be an easier transition. Although Europe is pricier, multiple EU and non-EU countries are already popular spots for digital nomads of all nationalities.
(See most recent news highlights below.)
Technology advances and the COVID-19 pandemic have accelerated the already growing demand for opportunities to work apart from a fixed location. Expats used to be primarily retirees looking for a lower cost of living in sunny climes. Today they also include a wide range from both younger workers starting out to mid-career executives and entrepreneurs.
With the global growth of the Internet, software developers and IT professionals have led the way to redefine the concept of an “office”. More broadly though, the pandemic has redefined “work” as we know it.
Digital Nomads Abroad-Latest News Roundup:
Highlights from Around the Web:
More Countries Welcome Digital Nomads:
Netherlands is now offering a Dutch American Friendship. These new e-visas are being offered on a country-by-country basis. They are limited to expats looking to start a business in-country. While the Netherlands has an active economy and a very popular destination, one challenge is that it is one of the most expensive places to live in the world.
Sri Lanka is growing as a top digital nomad destination, selected by the Club Med Index as #2 globally!
More Digital Nomad Villages: Portugal’s Madeira Island and Croatia’s, Borik, Zadra Valley
Wi-Fi: Some of the sunniest spots and favorite tourist destinations don’t have the infrastructure/high-speed Internet-Wi-Fi for a work environment.
Cost of Living: Our daily research of lodging costs abroad has shown that costs of living vary widely.
Transportation: Getting around can add substantially to costs. (In SE Asia, plan to commute via motorbike.)
Visa Restrictions: Each country sets its own requirements for residence visas and work permits once you are no longer a tourist. You may be taxed or face other fees, including for overstaying your visa. Before you pack, check the fine print!
Language and Culture: While English has become the “lingua franca” of business, day-to-day living in a country where you can’t understand or read can be challenging. In addition, consider whether you are comfortable with customs and restrictions you don’t experience at home.
Finding a Flexible Job or Career Path at Home or Abroad:
Option One: Try to DIY:
There are those rare Internet influencers who have developed millions of followers and generated income from blogging to attracting substantial advertisers. However, if you don’t fall into that category, a popular path has been to get a contract teaching English (or your native language) in select locations around the world for set periods of time. While teaching jobs have been in person, they may also currently involve some virtual options part or full-time. In addition, if you have a local employer, they could assist in working out visa requirements. Lastly, upon the expiration of of the contract’s term, the next step can be obtaining a new contract in a different part of the world. Once you establish a hub, you can move ahead to explore the region on weekends and holidays.
Option Two: Connect with an online search firm:
Spotlight on FlexJobs: “The #1 job site to find vetted remote, work from home, and flexible job opportunities since 2007.”
FlexJobs works connecting job seekers with employers offering positions not based on a fixed location. They range from remote to flexible or part-time.
As of Jan. 1, 2021 Croatia began to offer a special residence permit, not the same exactly as a “digital nomad visa” which they translate from the new law as follows:
“digital nomad is a third-country national who is employed or performs work through communication technology for a company or his own company that is not registered in the Republic of Croatia and does not perform work or provide services to employers in the Republic of Croatia.”
To learn more, contact the Croatian Embassy in the US (or in the national capital for your home country).
Portugal offers special visas or residence permits:
Temporary stay visa for independent work
Volunteer work for over 3 months
People living on their own income for over 3 months
No visa needed for EU citizens and those from the Schengen Area
Portugal is the first nation to have an actual “digital nomad village“!
To learn more, contact Portugal’s Embassy in Washington (or in the national capital of your home country.)
To keep on top of new developments, our monthly newsletters have an added special “Digital Nomad” feature in the mid-month edition. While we are continuing to showcase top solo travel deals and practical travel tips in every issue (see below), our expanded edition will focus on ways to reboot your lifestyle by working remotely or apart from a fixed location. The benefit? At home or abroad, you can combine a lifetime of travel whether you are looking only to break even or more broadly to build a career or to own a business.