Lots of people are talking about wanting to be a digital nomad these days. But how does one get started?
I sort of jumped into it, as there was little advice available in 2012 when I sold my house and left behind my executive life to be a travel writer.
Lately, I’ve seen tons of books on the market about how to be a digital nomad, but they have varying degrees of usefulness.
“Travel While You Work“, by Mish Slade, is one of the useful ones.
Even though I’ve been living the digital nomad life for most of the last three years (and, yes, thought I was pretty good at it!), I learned a lot from her book.
It’s not just about how to live while travelling, but how to run your business, whatever it may be, while travelling.
Oh, and it features an interview with me! (Pages 302 to 309 if you’re looking specifically for it).
Mish spent three years as a digital nomad, running her businesses from 20 different countries with her husband, and blogging about the experience on MakingItAnywhere.com (they have a weekly newsletter worth your time).
If you’re considering the digital nomad life, or if you’ve already started it but don’t want to fumble through the first year like I did, check out Mish’s book. You can buy a paperback or ebook through Amazon.com (no, I’m not getting any $ if you click through the link).
In Travel While You Work, Mish tells you:
- “The art of getting down to work fast in a new environment;
- “How to stay productive despite the hassles and distractions of travel;
- “Essential information about currencies and payments – including cross-currency payments;
- “Tips, tools and important principles for communicating with clients abroad;
- “A system for reliably hiring the best contractors and employees without meeting them in person;
- “How to manage a team when you’re all in different locations;
… And everything else you need to make “out of office” your permanent reality”.
And if you’re living the digital nomad life, you’ll love their Find a Nomad tool, which helps you find other like-minded people wherever you may be in the world.
Do you live a nomadic life? Do you want to? What are your biggest questions about it? I have a little advice in the Travel Practicalities section of my website, and I’m happy to answer any questions you may have.
I’m Irish, but been here for a while so yes I’ve taken the compulsory trip to Bali :)
I didn’t like Seminyak/Kuta at all, but reckoned Ubud would be nice for a few weeks, and more likely to get decent wifi (I need reasonable decent for work)
Irish, but been here for a few years, so yeah been once to Bali.
I hated the beaches in the south, but I think Ubud would be a decent place for a month if I had a motorbike. The reason I’d go Ubud rather than more remote is that I need a decent internet connection.
I did see a few nice places online for cheapish rents that said they had good internet…plus there is Hubud to fall back on.
An Irishman in Melbourne! Cool. And yes, the famous Hubud ;-) If you’re not yet fixed in Bali, consider Siem Reap, Chiang Mai (outside the spring burning season) or Saigon too. Enjoy!
Yeah I was thinking Chiang Mai originally, I’ve spent a bit of time there and know it has good internet. But it is burning season soon…plus I’ve been to Thailand 7 or 8 times, Bali once. But I do love Thai food…
I hadn’t considered Siem Reap, I only spent a couple of days there a few years ago, I seem to remember liking it :)
Saigon is a bit too busy for me I think.
Agree – burning season must be avoided. The challenge w Siem Reap is accommodation. There’s not an abundance of apartments for temp expats, but it is improving. The expat community there is great though. Yes Ubud is waaaaay better than southern Bali!
I was reading your interview just now in Travel while you work and wanted to say “Hi” from another 40 something (wannabe) digital nomad.
You’re right, most folks seem to fall into the 20-30 somethings or the retiring age. Us people stuck in the middle maybe have the most to lose by jumping into this, but that’s not a reason to give it a go!
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Thanks Sean and greetings from Montevideo, Uruguay!
Well, I do find a few of us 40 somethings out and about, though not nearly enough! Mind you, in Canada anyway, my cohort is the second smallest in the country, so I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised. I think it may be easier for us though – I spent 30 years building a career and some savings, and I’m still young enough to enjoy them. 20- and 30-somethings often don’t have the savings to rely on, plus are often pressured or pulled back into the “normal” world. So maybe we’re the lucky ones !
So, where are you planning to go?! :-)
Yeah, that’s one advantage we have – more experience and (hopefully!) more money.
I’m currently looking at dipping my toes in by spending a month or so in Ubud, while keeping my current job here in Melbourne.
How’s Montevideo? Never made it to that part of South America.
I hear there’s a number of digital nomad working sites in Ubud. Have you been to Bali before? If you’re Australian, I’m assuming yes! I confess to not loving Bali – I found the touts annoying, but they were better in Ubud than in places like Seminyak. Off the beaten path Bali is better, though you’ll need reliable wifi. Great that your work lets you take off for a month! My favourite SE Asia info site is Travelfish.org and the owners are based in Bali so they’ll have lots of advice. Have fun!