Digital Nomad FAQs: Top Questions Answered

The different lifestyles people adopt around the globe can often inspire others to follow a similar path, and this has been the case for many decades. The traditional choice is naturally the one that most people will drift towards, such as that of starting a family and settling down in a home with a white picket fence. However, many people choose to deviate from that path and instead focus on their career, travelling the world, or honing their artistic skills, for example. Today, there is a new lifestyle that some have started to adopt, and that’s one that combines and that is the lifestyle of the digital nomad. You may or may not have heard of this term, but this article aims to shine a light on this concept for those looking to find out more about this interesting lifestyle choice.

What Does It Mean To Be A Digital Nomad?

To some, the name “digital nomad” might be descriptive enough, but it may sound confusing to others. So, for clarity, let’s discuss what it means to be a digital nomad. Careers with a focus on the digital world are extremely common today, whether it’s a digital marketing role, coding, digital art, writing, video editing, or photography. The definition of a nomad is someone that doesn’t have a static home and instead experiences some significant freedom in terms of their ability to travel around the world with few restrictions. In other words, nomads are wanderers or individuals that don’t stay in the same place for long. To be a digital nomad is to be someone that has the lifestyle of a traveller; yet one that also holds a career within some form of digital industry such as one of those mentioned above. Many will get themselves a van and stay in different interesting places while completing their work; just as they would if they worked in an office or lived at a static home.

How Easy Is It To Become One?

Of course, it depends on each individual’s circumstances; but for the most part, it can be relatively easy to start a life as a digital nomad. First, you’ll have to consider comfortable living arrangements. You could live out of a car; some people do this relatively well, but it can be a very cramped experience. If you do this, consider at least getting yourself a larger car to live in that can store your belongings and allow you to sleep comfortably. In most cases, however, digital nomads will instead choose to live out of a converted van or some other large vehicle. Whatever you choose to live in, or if you choose between motels, hotels, and bed and breakfasts; you’ll likely have a lot more expendable income due to not having to pay rent or a mortgage. These extra funds can help you to secure decent quality accommodation during your travels. Or it could even help you to buy a quality van which has either been outfitted and made suitable for living in by an expert or by yourself. You’ll also need a career that allows you to work remotely and doesn’t require living in a particular area.

What Kind Of Work Do They Do?

Because digital nomads will need work that doesn’t require them to be in one spot; it’s quite common for digital nomads to be freelancers, taking on work as and when they need it. There is a lot of freedom to this, yet it comes with some financial stability risks. Oftentimes, digital nomads will take on creative roles for others, occasionally even incorporating their nomadic lifestyle into their work. For example, a photographer or videographer can gather footage and photos; and edit them down on location before moving on to the next place. A writer might post up on an idyllic mountainside parking lot; at the side of a lake, or in the middle of a forest and write with the help of the inspiration of nature all around them. Of course, not all these roles have to be creative ones. They simply need to allow the individual to work entirely remotely. It also works better in certain countries than others, and it’s important to search for your ideal remote job in a country where this will be as practical a pursuit as possible.

Can It Be A Profitable Lifestyle?

Profits aren’t entirely based on the amount of money you bring in. It’s also partially based on how much money you spend, too. Removing the cost of rent or mortgage payments can save you a substantial amount of money each month. While you will be replacing some of these costs with extra fuel for your vehicle, the occasional stay in a hotel; and more regular vehicle maintenance, you will likely be spending less on this lifestyle than the traditional one. Of course, don’t expect this to be the biggest money-saving venture ever, and it can take a lot of getting used to if you’ve never lived the nomadic lifestyle before; so be prepared for this.

How Long Do People Spend As Digital Nomads?

This a question we can’t answer accurately, as everyone has different desires, responsibilities, and goals. Plenty of different situations could cause someone to reconsider their nomadic lifestyle and pursue a more static one. For example, you might miss the social life that can only be built when living near your friends and family. Some may begin to worry about their security living in a car or van with all of their valuables with them. And some may simply have a change of heart and begin to feel as though they’re satisfied with their wanderlust and want to start a new chapter in their life. Alternatively, you might even decide that you’ve found your “forever lifestyle” and commit to living this way for the foreseeable future. Because of all these variables, there is no way to tell exactly how long someone will spend as a digital nomad. It could be a few months, a few years, or upwards of a decade. It all depends on the individual.

Is It Best To Travel Alone Or With Someone?

Again, this is another thing that is down to personal preference. There are plenty of couples that have adopted the digital nomad lifestyle and have never looked back. If you are only concerned about spending your time with someone or a few people that mean everything to you; then venturing out on this adventure with them might be the ideal situation for you. Some others may find the company of others somewhat taxing and prefer to keep people at arm’s length. Neither of these is the correct way to think and feel; it all depends on what is right for you.

What Are The Drawbacks To Being A Digital Nomad?

There are certain risks to being a digital nomad, including, as mentioned earlier, security. A car or van can understandably be a much easier target for thieves than a home, which can often put people off. There’s also the chance that certain members of the public don’t always take kindly to people living a nomadic lifestyle. Most people generally go about their own business; but many digital nomads will eventually experience what is known as “the knock”. This is where a disgruntled member of the public might be annoyed that you’re parked up somewhere; even if you’re well within your rights to be there. But it’s worth remembering that there are pros and cons to all lifestyles we choose; and you simply need to decide what you want to do and whether it’s worth the risks.

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