By definition, a digital nomad earns their living mostly online and uses this freedom of location to have the independence to travel and live a life unlimited by destination.” You, too, can pursue this lifestyle. Here’s how.
1. Make a timeline.
If you want it, it’s important to go after it and to do that you’ll have to set a goal. Here’s where a timeline comes in. If you desire to keep planning to travel for the long haul without setting any specific time frame, you might end up postponing your plans until you look up and the time has passed to embark on the great adventure of the digital nomad.
So set a specific date for your plans. Do you want to do it in six months? A year? Be realistic with your timeline. Remember you’ll need ample time to prepare. You also need to save enough money for your travel, “nest egg.”
2. Save for your travel, “nest egg.”
A travel “nest egg” is not your travel budget per se. It’s your contingency budget. Your peace-of-mind funds. Ideally, you don’t exhaust it the first few months of your long haul travel. Those first few months should be funded by a travel budget set specifically for testing the waters.
Here’s the challenging part: you might have to cut your current expenses to save enough for your travel “nest egg.” If you have a full-time job, this is not the time to quit. If you have side gigs, continue doing them. Also, entertain other sources of income. You want
For example, if your closet is chock-full of nice dresses you bought fromwomen’s clothing boutiques, you could sell some of them. After all, you won’t need them when you leave. Well, except for maybe a couple you could take to your travel for when you need to look cute while on the road.
As for the exact amount of savings you need, it’s for you to decide. It will depend primarily on how long you plan to be nomadic. It pays that you have a specific goal in mind. Once you’ve reached that goal, you’re on to the next step.
3. Quit your job/find virtual “do anywhere” work.
Once you’re comfortable with the money you saved for both your travel “nest egg” and your daily living budget, write the best resignation letter you can write. Ideally, you do not want to burn the bridges with your bosses. You want to be welcomed back should you decide to return. While spending your last days in your current and soon-to-be-previous work, begin applying for virtual jobs. Secure one or two for your purposes. For example, if you write, you can sign up for any of these freelancing portals.
4. Explore Workaway.
Workaway is an online platform where you can browse through a list of businesses or private individuals looking to host travelers in exchange for a few hours of work a day. A Workaway registration will cost you $42 for one year.
Volunteering is an interesting way to travel. It will allow you to immerse yourself in your visited community and see a different side of the community that you visit. It will also save you a lot of money that you won’t have to touch your travel “nest egg” for a long time.
5. Buy travel insurance.
Most budget travelers don’t buy insurance. This is an absolute no-no, especially if you’re traveling for long. The last thing you want to happen is to get sick while you’re in an expensive city sans insurance. That will easily eat up your “nest egg,” and you might have to cut your travel short. Check out some travel insurance providers from this list. The price of coverage will depend on your travel plans. Ask your preferred provider for a quote and a what that quote includes.
6. Book a ticket.
There are two ways to go about your itinerary. You can either start with the most faraway place you want to visit and make your way closer to home as you go along or, you can start with a nearby destination and go farther and farther to the great unknown. Whichever you choose, make sure to buy a ticket from a reputable online booking outlet.
Yes, all you need is an outbound ticket. But be ready to explain yourself at the immigration. They normally ask for return tickets, but if you aptly explain that you’ll be a digital nomad for a long time, they will understand.
7. Pack light.
Stick with the essentials. You can buy other stuff you might need on the road… or when you get there. Due to the COVID pandemic, your dreams of pursuing the digital nomad lifestyle might need to be postponed for a little while. But do not lose hope. Use this time to prepare, plan and create the best start to the adventure of your dreams. A new normal will stabilize and by then you will be ready. Come that day, please stay safe on the road and have a blast.