How to Work Remotely as a Digital Nomad
Working remotely has become pretty popular in the past couple of years, and with the right tools, anyone can do it! The key is to make sure you have a plan for funding your travel, communicating with clients, and finding new jobs throughout the year. Here’s a guide to help you get started with your new career and lifestyle as a traveling freelancer so you can successfully work remotely!
Tips On How You Can Work Remotely
Plan for Funding Your Trips
You may already have savings set aside, but it’s best to keep that untouched for the moment and focus instead on selling or renting out some possessions that you won’t need while you’re traveling. Depending on the mode of transportation you plan to use, you might even sell your car.
You can also consider easy ways to make passive income, such as monetizing your blog, as well as simple money-making methods that you can continue to do while you’re traveling. These might include starting your own online shop full of handmade items, or reselling thrifted clothing and accessories on a resale app like Poshmark. If you choose one of the latter options, set up your online shops well before you start traveling so you can establish a customer base and promote your business on social media.
Pay Down Debt
Before you set off on your first adventure, it’s important to quickly pay down some debt and clear out those credit card balances. Not only will you not want to worry about making those payments while you’re on the road, it will be beneficial to have available credit in case of emergency.
You can also take this time to close out subscriptions and memberships that you won’t need while you’re traveling. Reducing your ongoing expenses is crucial before you get started with the digital nomad lifestyle.
Build Your Skill Set
Research Your Job Options
Once you have your finances in order, do some research to learn more about the different types of freelance jobs that are available so you can focus on building your skills. Copywriting, graphic design, photography, and editing are just a few options depending on your area of interest, and you can look for online courses or tutorials that will help you boost your skill set. Consider looking for a few clients before you begin traveling so you can build a solid base and network.
It’s also a good idea to set up an LLC, or Limited Liability Company, in order to protect your personal finances and keep them separate from your professional income. Forming an LLC comes with several advantages where your taxes are concerned and will help you remain flexible as a business owner, but there are a few steps you’ll need to take in order to set one up. Check the rules in your state about entity formation services before getting started.
Decide How to Structure Your Business
Some freelancers make enough money with one specific job to fund their traveling expenses and lifestyle, while others prefer to do several different gigs in order to keep things interesting and ensure there’s always an income stream.
The way you choose to support yourself as you travel is a personal decision that can always be changed down the road; this is one of the many benefits of becoming a digital nomad. When you’re first starting out, it’s best to keep your options open and to network as much as possible in order to make connections that will be helpful as you travel.
Plan Your Trip
Look for Tech-Friendly Spaces
When you’re ready to look for your first travel destination, think about the details that will be most important to you during your stay, such as safety and the cost of living in the area. Do you prefer to stay in a hotel or rental home, or will you be camping or spending time in an RV?
Wherever you choose to stay, you’ll need quality internet access as well as a way to charge your laptop and phone. Check out NomadList, which curates digital nomad-friendly spots in various cities around the world and offers helpful tips on the local weather, crime rate, and fun activities.
Plan for Saving Money
Staying in hotels and rentals can eat up your funds, which is why many digital nomads choose to do so only occasionally, staying in hostels or co-living spaces the rest of the time. You can also stay frugal throughout any given week by eating like the locals do rather than heading to touristy spots, walking and taking public transportation, and traveling light so you’ll have less laundry to clean. If you have a membership to a gym that’s a national chain, consider keeping it so you can utilize their showers.
Prepare for Communication When You Work Remotely
Create a Plan for Your Clients
When you’re constantly traveling, it’s essential to have a good plan in place for staying in touch with your clients. They should be able to reach you at any time, no matter where you are in the world, but this can be tricky when you’re not sure where you’re going next. Give them several methods for contacting you, such as by social media chat, video call, direct message, email, text, and phone. Work out a routine that helps you keep up with your communications so that nothing slips through the cracks.
Give Yourself the Right Tools
However you choose to communicate with your clients, it’s important to make sure you have the right tools to remain professional. Zoom meetings, for instance, will require a quiet space and the right clothing. You’ll also want to have a good pair of noise-canceling headphones and an extra set of earbuds so you can participate in video calls in a public space without disturbing the people around you or dealing with distractions.
Working as a digital nomad can be hugely rewarding with a solid plan in place, so give yourself time to think about how you’ll begin. Whether you’re looking to make this a long-term career or you just want to try it for a fixed amount of time, there are several things you can do to make it work for your needs and make your quest to work remotely successful!
About the Author
A few years ago, burned out and miserable from his job in corporate marketing, Lance Cody-Valdez decided it was time to invest in himself. He quit his job the following day and used his meager savings to stay afloat as he built a career as a freelance writer and content marketer. He created free-lance-now.com to help others use freelancing to escape the 9 to 5 daily grind.
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