Introducing the Digital Nomad
Do any of these sound like you?
- When you go on vacation, it’s paradise. You are relaxed and having constant fun. But when it comes time to go home, you’re cursing that you don’t have more time. Unfortunately, the real world awaits.
- What about your 9-5 job? Are you celebrating Fridays and dreading Mondays?
- Or maybe you “achieve” all these wonderful things: a house, car, and family. But you see others doing fun things in their lives oand realize those things are also constraints on your own freedom. Cue the mid-life crisis and regrets…
For some of us, the answer is probably yes. But now we can introduce a cure for these problems: the digital nomad. What is a digital nomad? It simply means you’re independent of everything: a single job, single location, or single lifestyle. You can roam around and work, live, and enjoy your passions. And you can do that with confidence. Because it’s quite easy to become a digital nomad and sustain that lifestyle for as long as you choose.
This article is intended to show you how. There are many digital nomad resources online. However, since we’re the best resource for all things travel visa related and we’re committed to removing travel barriers, we want to help you travel as much as you choose. And this might be embracing this digital nomad lifestyle in whatever way you choose to do it.
So let’s start with how you can be a digital nomad. Then we’ll talk about the resources to get started.
Digital Nomad Approaches
As we said, there’s no single way to become a digital nomad. It’s really whatever you make of it. The idea is that you’re independent and free. So it’s not about following 10 steps to “achieve” this lifestyle. You just have to choose it and then customize the lifestyle to your unique preferences.
But we’ve seen many interesting ways of doing it that might inspire you. Here are a few:
The True Nomad – Some digital nomads just roam from place to place. They don’t have a base or home of any type. They simply live out of a suitcase and periodically change locations. Travel bloggers, for instance, often go from place to place each week. Others might stay a month or two in each destination.
The Expat – Some find a place they love and stay long-term. They simply move to a new country and put down new roots. Since they are location independent, this is possible at any time. Spin the globe and pick your place! You can read more about how to become location independent with Hubud in Bali.
The Business Machine – Some people roam based on their business deals. They might be a consultant and travel to their client each week or might do longer-term projects around the globe. When the work wraps up, they move on to the next gig.
The Lifestyle Aficionado – Some people travel based on a specific lifestyle. Surfers are a great example. They might rotate around areas where the surf is best each season. Some might take their trailer-home or motorcycle. Others might rotate based on a different passion: sports, music, camping, climbing, cooking, or anything else that might strike your fancy.
The Frequent Traveller – Some people want to maintain their home location but just have a passion for travel. Nothing wrong with that – you can still consider yourself a digital nomad. You choose how much you want to travel each year since your job enables location independence. 1 month? Sure. 9 months? Equally possible. Change it up every year depending on mood? We’d highly recommend it!
The Roaming Student – You don’t have to work on the road. Students or adults changing careers can be nomadic during their studies. Some might opt to study at a formal degree or training program abroad. Others might learn online, as digital resources are quite good for self-learning. You can still pick up work to fund your travels and studies. The cool thing is that many destinations have lower living costs than you’re accustomed to at home.
The Entrepreneur – Many people move around for starting their own business. They might have clients, suppliers, networks, or physical locations across the world. They might be doing cross-border deals. An entrepreneur should always be flexible and this gives you ultimate flexibility for all stages of the business lifecycle.
Seasonal Chasers – Don’t like winter? Or perhaps you’re a skier and you do love winter? Maybe the seasons have a different impact on your life. Digital nomads can chase any seasonal benefits they choose.
Fill In the Blank – These are probably the most common approaches to being a digital nomad. But you can fill in the blank if you have alternative priorities. Or you can combine a few of these approaches. You are free. Customize this independence to your own preferences!
How is this possible?
Whether you’ve seen digital nomads living this lifestyle or are hearing about it for the first time today, the most frequent question is how such lifestyles are possible? It’s not just for the rich and famous. It’s not just for people that have luck or privilege. Anyone can do it. You just have to choose this lifestyle and do the work to make it possible.
Luckily, digital nomads are so popular that an entire service industry has risen to accommodate them. Here are a few we like to get you started.
First is our service. You might wonder how to travel the world when every country has a different visa requirement. We take the hassle out of this by telling you your requirements (based on where your passport is from) and getting you through that process. Get started at Sherpa.
As far as other services, the travel industry is your friend. Use Skyscanner to book flights, Airbnb and Trivago for accommodation, Uber for transportation, and TripAdvisor for travel recommendations.
Digital Nomad Careers
Reverse Tide is a great resource for digital nomad learning and careers. They help you with learning the skills for common digital nomad jobs and then the corresponding job applications. Some of the features:
Reverse Tide Learning – They have 23 learning paths for how to learn tech, business, and marketing skills. Each shows you the right path to learn, the best sources, and how to get resume-building experience in each subject. They also help with thinking about future skill and career trends so you can position yourself ahead of time.
Reverse Tide Careers – They have a really good resume guide and plenty of other career guides (interviewing, portfolios, etc). This helps with all the proposals and job applications you’ll need to do. And they actually help you do it in a modern and innovative way (which you don’t often find).
Reverse Tide Freelance – Freelancing is one of the most common ways to get started as a digital nomad. They have some great guides for freelance sales and then making your freelancing a larger business.
Digital Nomad Community
It can be a bit scary to venture off on your own. But luckily, communities around the world make this really easy. Co-Live spaces like Roam or Outsite are great, as are retreats like Refuga and Unsettled.
Co-working is quite popular around the world. You can find each city’s spots at Desksurfing.
Nomadlist is a great community with location reviews/information and chat resources.
Finally, each city has different and numerous ways of meeting people. Couchsurfing, Facebook groups, meetups, and expat groups are common in big cities around the world!
The Final Verdict
The reality is there is much more out there! No matter what you need as a digital nomad, there are services to accommodate you. It can be really easy to get started and if you use your career resources right a lifestyle that is right for you is possible to sustain – for as long as you want it. You can truly live your free lifestyle. It is possible to eliminate the 9-5, the bad case of the Mondays, and the vacation regret. At Sherpa, we encourage you to get started today. As always – Travel Easy!
– The Sherpa Team