The Ultimate Checklist to Get You Started
Is location independence calling your name? If so, then you’re not alone! Forget being tethered to a desk, 9-5. And no more sitting in traffic every morning. The skyrocketing number of remote work opportunities has created a thriving digital nomad community that “commutes” from anywhere in the country.
Ready to hit the road as a digital nomad? Before you head to the airport, here are the questions you need to answer first.
Where are you going to live?
Dying to explore NYC, Chicago, or another metro area? Exploring a new culture? Or are you daydreaming of someplace warm? Being a digital nomad, you don’t need to be tied to one place for very long – move when the mood strikes. But to start out, you’ll need to know the general area where you’re headed.
Once you’ve figured out what city/town you want to hit first, it’s time to find living quarters.
- You could always book a hotel, but they tend to be more expensive than a rental.
- Apartments are an easy option, but most wanderers don’t want to be tied down by the typical 1-year lease. Look for a sublet or shorter lease (1-3 months) instead.
- Our advice: go with a fully-furnished short-terms rental such as Anyplace or Airbnb. You’ll get the roominess of an apartment and the flexibility of a hotel.
Where are you going to work?
The beauty of location independence is not needing an actual office. And most digital nomads are happy to set up space wherever they’re living. As long as you have a comfy place to sit and WiFi (we’ll talk about that below), you’re good to go.
But being home alone all day can get a bit, well… lonely. Neighborhood cafes are a simple solution – but they can be noisy. And expensive, if you’re drinking frappuccinos to justify your spot.
Instead, check out co-working spaces where you can “rent” a desk. For a small weekly or monthly fee, you’ll have access to the typical office equipment: desk, chair, printer, internet connection, and so on.
Does your job let you work remotely?
Almost every digital nomad needs to work to support their wanderlust. A job that allows you to work from anywhere – with the occasional Zoom check-in, maybe – is the ideal solution.
If your current job is location-based, there are a couple of things you can do. First, talk to your boss. Companies are realizing that they can save on overhead and hire and retain quality employees by offering remote work. They might be willing to let you work from home (and they don’t need to know that “home” is a sunny beach!).
Or, you can switch gears to a job that does offer remote work. Do you have skills or hobbies you can leverage into freelance or contract work? Think: photography, writing, programming, web development, social media marketing, teaching courses online.
Is your internet stable?
Stable connectivity is a must-have for any digital nomad!
If you’re booking a hotel or Airbnb, read through their reviews. Make sure that previous guests haven’t had issues with slow internet connections or laggy WiFi.
Your cell phone can be a good backup plan – most of them can be used as hotspots. But be sure you read the fine print on your data plan. Setting up a hotspot will burn through your available data quickly, especially if you’re using it for video calls.
How are you moving your stuff around?
Part of the excitement of being a digital nomad is being able to move around at a whim. But when you decide to trade Seattle’s rain for Savannah’s southern charm, you’ll have to figure out how to get your stuff there, too.
And this isn’t a quick weekend trip; a duffel bag or carry-on just won’t cut it. Work stuff, clothes and shoes, personal care items… they all take up space. And that means overstuffed bags – and their fees – on every flight.
Skip the heavy suitcases and let LugLess ship it all to your hotel or rental. You can head to the airport hands-free, and your stuff will be waiting for you when you get there. It’s the digital nomad lifestyle at its easiest!
Ready to enjoy location independence? Pack your bags, throw a dart at a map, and enjoy your travels. And don’t forget to send us a postcard!
Frequently Asked Questions
The first step is to start cutting ties to a specific location, especially where you live and where you work. Once you have the freedom to move around while making money, you can start on your digital nomad adventure.
it depends on what they do for a living and how much experience they have. A freelance graphic designer with 10 years+ years of experience might have a higher salary rate than someone who is just building their business. Be patient while you’re creating your lifestyle!
Skip oversized and excess baggage fees and ship your stuff to your next location. It’ll be there waiting for you when you get to your hotel or rental.