As the work-from-home movement and digital work environments have become more common, it’s more feasible than ever for people to live as a digital nomad. A digital nomad, simply put, is someone who uses technology to earn a living and explore the world. While a digital nomad doesn’t necessarily have to live in a foreign country, there are many reasons why you should take the leap and move abroad as a digital nomad.
1. Have flexibility and freedom
When your work is mobile and entirely digital, you have the freedom and flexibility to choose. You can select where you want to travel next, what hours you’ll work, and what funky coffee shop or bar you’ll call your office for the day. When you decide to pursue a season as a digital nomad, you break free from the corporate 9-5 cubicle life and get to make a schedule that best fits your schedule.
2. Experience multiple cultures and cities
Who doesn’t want to see the world and make a living at the same time? One of the best reasons why you should move abroad as a digital nomad is the opportunity to travel, experience new cultures, and explore new cities in a way you wouldn’t otherwise be able to on vacation or even as an expat. Spend a week in Budapest, then spend a few weeks in Bratislava, or spend an entire month exploring South Africa; as a digital nomad, you don’t have to choose between income and travel, you can have both.
3. Get out of your comfort zone
You learn a lot about yourself when you’re put out of your comfort zone. Moving in between new cities or countries is exciting, but it also pushes you and tests your limits. Learning new languages, navigating a foreign city’s public transportation system, trying new foods, and putting yourself out there is a great way to expand your horizons and stretch yourself to new limits.
4. Immerse yourself as a local
Living and working in new locations periodically throughout a period of time really highlights the value of immersing yourself as a local. Finding a local coffee shop to work from lets you get a feel for the vibe of that city. Discovering a funky food vendor on the sidewalk allows you to truly eat like a local. Making your money go further and shopping at a grocery store is a great way to discover local cuisine, customs, and even a familiar face or two. Don’t be afraid to smile at a stranger, ask a barista for a recommendation, and really dive into the culture while you’re there.
5. Build an international network
You’ve probably heard the saying “it’s not about what you know, it’s about who you know”, but it’s true. Often we find ourselves in situations where a connection got us there, not necessarily our background or experience (though these things help). Moving abroad as a digital nomad allows you to connect with people across the world in different vocations and careers. This can definitely be an asset in the future for new opportunities and potential jobs down the line.
Living abroad is one of the best experiences you can give yourself, and what better way than to experience that as well as earn a living with complete freedom and flexibility?! Whether you’re new to the digital working environment and have been doing it for a while, there are many benefits to taking that leap and moving abroad and working (and exploring) new cultures and cities. Do your research on where you want to go, loosely plan out your route (but leave room for spontaneous adventures), invest in international health insurance (because often your domestic policies won’t cover international health coverage), and go out and start exploring the world!