Being a digital nomad isn’t for everyone… that being said, it is a lifestyle beloved by many. If you’re considering taking the leap into becoming a digital nomad then you know it is not a decision to be taken lightly.
Being a full-time digital nomad encompasses all of the scary parts about being an entrepreneur or working for yourself, plus it adds full-time travel into the mix. When done effectively, it can be an amazing, rewarding, and challenging (in the best possible way) experience… but, as many have unfortunately found it, when done incorrectly, it can be disastrous.
As with most things, it all comes down to planning.
If you’re considering taking the leap, you must ask yourself a few questions:
Are you interested in living the nomadic lifestyle or are you simply wanting a vacation?
Does your job allow for telecommuting? If not, do you have a skill that would allow you to work remotely? Something like writing, digital marketing, or web development?
Do you have funds saved for unexpected expenses?
How will health insurance work if you are traveling abroad?
If you’re serious about engaging in this lifestyle, then you’re definitely going to want to get to planning.
Most websites, blogs, and communities harp on working to eliminate debt before beginning the digital nomad lifestyle.
If it’s possible to be completely debt-free (or at least reduce your debt to a manageable number), then you will be able to spread your dollars further while you travel. Plus, how much of a bummer would it be to write a check each month for a car that is located three thousand miles away?
Once your numbers are all squared away debt-wise, you’ll want to see exactly how much you’ll be making each month… and then plan from there where you will travel. For example, if your take home pay is $2,500 a month and you pay $300 a month toward your debt, plus $500 for monthly expenses like health insurance, contact lenses, prescriptions, and a cellphone, then you probably are going to want to avoid places like New York, London, and Paris (at least in terms of lengthy, month-long visits!).
The good news, though, is there are tons of beautiful cities where your dollar stretches quite a bit!
Once you’ve got the big things mapped out, you’ll want to wrap up things on the home front. Will you sell your belongings? Store them? Is your passport valid?
Are you in need of scheduling any doctor’s appointments before setting out on the big adventure? Even the seemingly smallest things can create a big headache while traveling, so try to be two steps ahead of any possible disasters.
The thing about it is that once you’ve gone through the not-so-fun planning processes, a life on the road can be an almost religious experience. Yes, because it is the 21st century, your nomadic experience is still going to require things like international calling plans and time zone coordination with work and paying taxes… but, hey, that’s just life.
The truth about the digital nomad lifestyle? Well, the truth is, it can be a heck of an amazing time. Get your ducks in a row, cross your Ts and dot your Is, and then set out for the adventure of a lifetime.
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