It didn’t start with a clear decision one day. I did not have one moment of clarity, get a big break or inherit an estate. Choosing the life of a Digital Nomad was a natural, intuitive decision, made over many months, What started as a pursuit of my passions turned into very satisfying way of making money, and I slowly realized that I may never have to work at a job for a paycheck, commute to work, or even stay in one country, ever again.
Being a digital nomad conjures up images of sitting on a tropical beach with a laptop, sipping pina-coladas. Or living in exotic locations without a care in the world.
I won’t lie – being a digital nomad – making money online while traveling the world – is great. But it’s a decision that must be made with some care and planning, before you chuck your current job and pack your bags.
Many people have asked me what it’s like being a digital nomad, and how they can get started too. Well, before you choose this lifestyle, you’ll need to answer some questions honestly …
Why do you want to be a digital nomad?
Is it simply because you want to visit other countries?
After all, you can save some cash, quit your job, and travel to all the places you’ve wanted to see. You don’t need to switch careers for that!
And if you’ve never been out of the country, may need to get a taste of traveling first – and all the challenges and adventures that come with it. It’s exciting, but it’s not for everyone.
Are you interested in this lifestyle because you wish to “live on your terms” and not be tied down to one place?
This can be one of the perks of running a business online, but it’s not without its challenges. As a globetrotter, you may have to deal with unreliable connectivity, the lack of a social security cover (or the support of your family) and if you plan poorly, getting stuck in another country without enough cash.
That said, this may be the right career move for you, if …
- You’re skilled at programming, graphic design, writing and other skills which do not require you to be in one office or location
- You want to diversify your income by working for more than one business
- You are thinking of setting up passive income streams
- You genuinely love traveling, and don’t mind living in a developing country (where costs of living are lower)
Being a digital nomad is a great way of seeing remote places, meeting new people and experiencing new cultures, which you cannot do if you’re on a standard two-week holiday to cliché travel destinations.
It’s also a great way to save a lot of cash, fast! As a digital nomad, you will primarily be earning in currencies like the US dollar and the Euro. And if you’re living in Southeast Asia, for instance, you can keep your expenses to a minimum and save most of what you earn.
So being a digital nomad isn’t just for people who want to travel. It’s also a great way to save up cash in the long term – if you’re planning to start a business or buy a home, for instance.
This, of course, won’t work out if you are living in more expensive places, like Western European countries. Keep in mind that only top-earning digital nomads can be truly location-independent – working from anywhere in the world.
When I lived in Barcelona, that place was expensive! But I LOVE Spain so it was well worth it!
You’ll also need to plan your travel carefully and ensure that you have reliable access to the Internet, wherever you live. You’ll need it to connect with buyers or clients, manage your finances and pay your taxes remotely. (I need to write a blog post about this…)
And if you choose to set up a blog for passive income, you’ll need good connectivity on the go. As a digital nomad, you’ll need to give precedence to living in places that offer a fine balance between reasonable costs of living and good WIFI connectivity.
Lastly, you must give careful thought to how you will be making money as you live the life of a digital nomad. Broadly, there are four reliable ways of earning money online …
- You can be a freelancer and offer services to clients
- You can sell items online – (perhaps exotic goods from the place you’re in)
- You can set up streams of passive income and focus on growing these businesses remotely
- You can also work exclusively for companies which hire employees remotely
- You can create your own blog and sell advertising or your own digital products
In a full length training video, I’ll be explaining how you can use any of these strategies to make a comfortable living online and travel worldwide. To watch it, go to internetlifeacademy.com and put your email in so I can send it to you!