Everything To Consider Before Becoming A Digital Nomad
Photo Credit: Envato Elements

Photo Credit: Envato Elements

Everything To Consider Before Becoming A Digital Nomad

Digital Nomads , living abroad , The Black Expat
Amara Amaryah
Amara Amaryah Jan 23, 2023

These days everyone has thought about becoming a digital nomad, or, they’ve already done it. It is increasingly becoming the go-to way of experiencing freedom while traveling and working. With remote working popularized, it makes complete sense.

Even so, there are certainly some things to keep in mind before taking the leap. Sure, working at the beach with ocean swim breaks in Costa Rica is tempting. And renting your own apartment in the next state while exploring for a month is a great idea. However, there is a lot to plan for. Digital nomads have inspired many but here are some things to consider (or avoid) before you join the gang.

Choose your location wisely

There are so many places in the world that the idea of choosing a place to be a digital nomad is dizzying. The trick is choosing based not only on your travel preferences but also the environments you enjoy working in. i.e., if you enjoy quiet, peaceful environments then maybe Playa del Carmen isn’t going to be for you with it being in constant party mode. Likewise, if you prefer to have an abundance of green, natural spaces then busy cityscapes such as London might not entice you.

Considering what will allow you to flourish in your work, social, and personal lives will help you a lot. Other things to consider are your budget, the typical internet speeds, the abundance of cafes to work in, and the culture. At Travel Noire, we would strongly recommend considering whether you’re welcome by the community. Digital nomad presence can often lead to rising prices for locals and a range of over consequences. Earlier this year, Mexico City was the latest location to express frustration at the influx of digital nomads. 

Budding nomads should also consider how the environment will interfere with their health, body, and mind. This could be about preparing for living in higher altitudes or in overly humid environments (and the effects this could have on your laptop/equipment). Lots of research should guide you accordingly!

Related: How To Be An Impactful Expat Wherever You Go

'Paradise’ comes with its complications

Photo by Polina Tankilevitch

On that note, yes, paradise is not always the best option when you’re working abroad. Some digital nomads have warned that too much beachside working has caused the sea salt in the air to damage their laptops, others have mentioned that regular power outages interfere with their work calls. And then there are those who simply cannot lift themselves off the beach and get into work mode. Living in beautiful tropical environments takes more work than expected. Much can go wrong in an environment not technically designed for work, keep this in mind when booking your digital nomad adventures in the paradisiacal parts of the world. 

Related: Traveler Story: Little Corn Island, A Perfect Off-Grid Getaway In Nicaragua

Digital nomad visas

There are a range of digital nomad visas that allow for newbie and long-term digital nomads to sustain their lifestyles with more stability. Digital nomad visas typically require remote workers to earn a certain salary and to commit to the country for a set amount of time. 

Related: Thailand Offering 10-Year Visa, Low Taxes For Digital Nomads

Maybe it's a workcation-vibe?

7-Must-Have-Items-to-Work-From-Anywhere

The question remains, are you after that digital nomad lifestyle or a chance to uproot from office life for a while? Knowing the difference between wanting a break and reevaluating the way you live and work is absolutely key. There is certainly less hassle with workcations (in the long-term) which attracts many. Workcations are ideal if you have never traveled long-term and wish to dip your toes in (to, say, the warm Indian Ocean while temporarily living in Seychelles).

Digital nomadic living, however, is about being in constant transit or at least, being invested in newness. Those looking for a new way of experiencing time/location independence tend to jump into digital nomad living. 

Related: Advice From A Black Expat: How To Strike The Right Balance On Your Workcation

The thing about advice

The thing about asking for advice before relocating is…it may not truly apply to your personal experience of a country. Of course, it may be helpful to know what to expect when ‘becoming a digital nomad in X city’, especially if it is a place you’ve never traveled to before. But is it crucial? 

Seeking advice is always wise but take it lightly. Someone’s advice should never dictate your opinion of a city. You’ll never really know until you’re walking the streets and feeling it out for yourself.

Related: 8 Tips I Learned About Language Learning From Other Multi-Lingual Travelers 

Don’t spend all your time behind screens

Adobe Stock

This is your friendly reminder to not travel to a whole other country and live behind screens. Surely the best thing about being a digital nomad is the daily opportunity to live in beautiful countries—this is no time to spend 10 hours on your laptop, ignoring the world. Be sure to explore your surroundings, try new things, and make new memories.

Related: Traveler Story: The Highs And Lows Of Nomadic Living 

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