A New Breed of Entrepreneurs: Digital Nomads 101

Steve Roberts was the world’s first digital nomad. He started his 14,000 miles-long bicycle odyssey in 1983 and wrote hundreds of articles on his Model 100 portable computer while being on the road. A lot of things changed since the eighties.

Emergence of Skype, PayPal, Upwork and Slack, enabled many people to create the perfect synergy between their career and a nomad lifestyle. Today, thousands of digital nomads from around the world are traveling and working at the same time. Before you pack your laptop and reserve a low-cost airline ticket, you should read this concise preparation guide.

Find work

Settling at a new location can be very expensive. You need to buy an airline ticket, find an appropriate lodging, eat outside etc. In order to bridge this difficult period, you need to find a job before you start your journey. Start sending resume to employers at least few months before you start your nomad adventure.

If you plan to find work through freelance marketplace websites like Upwork or Fiverr, start building your profile as early as possible, because only members with solid work history and good references can win high-paying projects.

Some digital nomads run their companies while traveling. If you want to be a nomad entrepreneur, incorporate your company and build its online presentation at least a year before you board the plane. If you’re not a web design expert, you should choose easy-to-use content management systems, like WordPress and a hosting company that provides an elaborate tutorial that will help you to build an attractive website or blog. Specialized hosting companies always provide solid discounts and the great WP Engine deals are the best proof for this.

Find good travel deals

In order to stretch your budget and visit more places, you should always look for affordable travel deals. Use Sky Scanner to find the best airline fares, and bus or rail websites for your local travels. If you are brave enough, you can also use hitchhiking for reaching nearby tourist sites. On Hitchwiki you can find a lot of useful information about hitchhiking spots and routes.

When you reach your destination use Booking or AirBnB to find lodging, before your rent a decent apartment. There’s also Couchsurfing, which can be used for finding a free emergency lodging or for meeting other digital nomads and expats.

Pack your bags

Most travelers tend to over-pack their backpacks, which slows them down and increases their airplane luggage expenses. Packing starts from choosing the right backpack. If you’re not planning to climb the Everest, you shouldn’t choose a 65 or 75-liter backpacks. Depending on the climate and the price of clothes at your final destination, your backpack capacity should range from 30 to 55 liters.

Other than your laptop, you should also carry the following:

  • External hard drive;
  • USB cable;
  • Headphones;
  • USB and AA charger and power base;
  • Swiss knife;

It is hard to choose an appropriate clothing for nomadic trips. Try to choose wrinkle-free items that are also light and easy to fold. You should read about local climate before you start packing. Try to take the minimal amount of clothing to your journey because buying new clothes at your destination is easier and more affordable than paying extra luggage fees.

You should definitely use the opportunity to finance your travels with creative freelance work. Digital nomad movement is another example of how internet technologies are changing the world for the better. Most digital nomads travel to developing countries, where they can easily stretch their dollars and experience local cultures. This concept benefits global economy and makes our world more diverse and multicultural.

About Dan Radak

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