These days, we work much more flexibly than we ever have before. This is a good thing, because it means we can fit our work into our busy lives, without it being the other way around! Of course, some things simply don’t fit in with a regular 9-5 job, such as travelling the world.
If you are someone who has always wanted to pack a suitcase and head off to explore, there is one work pattern which could work very well for you. Have you heard of the digital nomad lifestyle?
There are key differences between a freelancer and a digital nomad, although they do seem very similar at first. Put simply, a digital nomad is someone who travels but works at the same time. For instance, a digital nomad uses an Internet connection and a laptop (or equivalent) to do their work. They can be sat on a beach and still be working!
The digital nomad lifestyle is about extensive travel, and whilst that doesn’t mean constant travel, it means quite regular travel. So, if you are someone who wants to constantly plan trips and head off when funds allow, perhaps this way of life is the one for you.
Before you decide however, let’s check out the pros and cons.
Digital Nomad Pros
- The ability to travel anywhere and still work – This is without a doubt the number one pro of this type of lifestyle. You can travel for as long as you want, and you don’t have to worry about income – you literally take your work with you!
- The ability to meet other likeminded digital nomads and network – You will meet countless others who are doing the same kind of things as you, and you can also make use of co-working spaces to network with other professionals in your field. This also works for finding out travel tips on the go too.
- A sustainable work pattern – There are no major risks with this type of work, aside from the regular self employed risks. Provided you put in the work, the money will come.
- Most places have Internet and power – No matter where you are travelling these days, you won’t struggle to find the things you need for your work, e.g. a good Internet connection and a plug.
- Freedom! – Aside from anything else, you’re free to go wherever you want, work whenever you want, and however you want – you’re your own boss!
Digital Nomad Cons
- Loneliness – Whilst travelling is a wonderful thing, there is the tendency to become a little homesick from time to time. You can counteract that by getting out and about, meeting likeminded people, and using co-working spaces too.
- You need to build up your business first – Most digital nomads would tell you that you need to build up whatever job you’re going to do on the road, before you set off on your travel adventure. This cuts down on risk, and whilst it can take time, it is worth the wait.
- Don’t expect to be rich – You can make enough to get by as a digital nomad quite easily, but becoming rich can be a difficult process! Of course, that doesn’t mean you can’t try.
If you think the digital nomad lifestyle is something you’d like to try, why not head online and speak to some current nomads? There are countless blogs you can read, and many Facebook groups which will offer help and support, whilst you make your decision, and then your transition into the travel and work lifestyle.