A Guide to Living as a Digital Nomad

You’re probably wondering how people who post pictures of them constantly traveling are working to fend for their lifestyle. While a part of them prepares for long-term travel, some work remotely and earn as they live in different parts of the world. These traveling workers are today’s digital nomads.

What is a digital nomad?

A digital nomad is an individual who is an independent worker who relies on passive sources of income or work in the gig economy as freelancers. They’re constantly on the move, and the nature of their work allows them to be.

Their common characteristic consists of spending months overseas, going from one country to another, and working jobs that don’t require them to get in the office like nine to five jobs are.

The typical digital nomad picks the country they stay in based on their income. Some cities allow them to live comfortably with a $12,000 annual income, but that amount wouldn’t provide comfortable living in cities in Europe or the United States.

People of different income levels can become digital nomads if the nature of their source of income allows them to. Digital nomads do it for the freedom of mobility and the ability to work from anywhere across the globe.

How can you be a digital nomad?

travel concept

If the idea of constant scenery changes, new culture, and remote working interests you, you can live as one of these digital nomads.

Take a look at this list of steps on how you can transition from working in one place to working in different parts of the world:

1. Reduce location ties and expenses.

The first order of business in living as a digital nomad is realizing that you can’t live like one if you’re tied to a single place because of a long-term lease, a mortgage, a car loan, and other forms of debt.

Subscription services should also be reduced, such as a gym membership, to reduce the amount of money you spend and to save for the lifestyle you’re preparing for.

If you have a car, you should think about selling it unless you have a place where you can store it for months without it being rendered useless while you’re gone.

2. Meet other digital nomads.

Digital nomads have communities that cater to different nationalities living around the world. They can give you tips on how you can live your digital nomad lifestyle to the fullest and let you in on remote jobs relevant to your skills and new lifestyle.

If you’re thinking about your dating life, it won’t be difficult to meet people you can spend your digital nomad lifestyle through matchmaking services. These services can find people with similar interests as you. If you’re lucky, you might even get someone to travel and work with.

3. Be aware of your own skills.

If you’re coming from a nine to five job before turning into a digital nomad, it’s more than likely that you’ll have to sacrifice your position to pursue a new lifestyle. With that, you should realize your own skills and research trends, demand, and salaries.

Freelancing platforms won’t tie you to a single location to get jobs, but they’ll base your potential purely on your skills. For example, you’re good at taking photos. You can start by looking for freelance jobs and developing your portfolio to secure more jobs to fund your lifestyle.

4. Pick your first destination.

This can be a difficult task at first, especially when you’re not as well-traveled and in-the-know about different cities and how to live in them depending on income and desired environment.

One good piece of advice we can give you is to communicate with travelers who’ve been to the places you plan to visit. The insight they’ll provide will guide you through planning how you’ll live in a new place and which country you should go to next.

As a budding digital nomad, the most important part of picking your destinations is to know the cost of living of the place you’re going to. The last thing you want is to encounter monetary problems in a foreign country.

Is it for everyone?

Living as a digital nomad is for everyone. These people don’t live the same lavish and jet-setting lifestyles you’ll usually see. Some prefer to stay in remote and quiet places to focus on what they do and themselves. Some like big cities and meeting people. It’s all a matter of preference.