become digital nomad

Being a digital nomad isn’t a job, it’s a way of life. That’s the first thing you need to understand about becoming a digital nomad. Beyond the photos of heavenly beaches shared by travel bloggers, digital nomads are for the vast majority freelancers or remote workers.

A digital nomad lives outside France and works for his customers or his company from a third location. The key to adopting this lifestyle is to find an activity that can be carried out remotely.

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Choose the security of remote wage-earning

While freelancing is the doorway to the greatest freedom, it’s not for everyone. You don’t have to give in to the injunction to become a digital nomad. As telecommuting has become more widespread with the health crisis, more and more companies are using this argument as a competitive advantage to attract the best talent.

In the international digital nomad community, we come across a lot of Americans and Canadians on full remote, and it’s much more common there than in France. But since North America is always ahead of us, this bodes well for the future.

If you want to get started, but are afraid of entrepreneurship, finding a remote job could be the right compromise. A few constraints will remain, notably in your choice of destinations. If your company requires you to be available at certain times, you won’t be able to work in time zones too far from France.

But rest assured, Europe is home to a growing number of nomadic hubs: Split in Croatia, the Azores, Madeira with its digital nomad village, the Canary Islands with Tenerife in the lead, and Tbilisi in Georgia.

Choose the freedom of freelancing

The most common way to become a digital nomad is, of course, to go freelance. Being self-employed means a great deal of freedom: you choose your own working hours and don’t have to worry about time zones. You can also spend afternoons at the beach and work evenings instead, for example.

However, this freedom comes at a price: financial instability. While it’s entirely possible to make a full and happy living from your freelance activity, you need to keep this in mind, especially when you’re on the other side of the world.

There are two ways to become a digital nomad through freelancing.

Transforming your salaried job into a freelance one

You have a digital business as an employee that you can turn into a freelancer. For example, if you’re an SEO manager for a major corporation, you can become a freelance SEO consultant. Freelancers who choose this option often see their former employer become their first client, not least to ease the transition on both sides.

Professional retraining

Are you a non-digital professional? Then you need training. Many freelancers are in this situation, so don’t worry! The Internet has made the new web professions accessible to everyone. Choose a profession that appeals to you and find the right training in the field. Serious training organizations include LiveMentor and OpenClassroom.

Of course, it’s not easy to find THE job in which you’re going to thrive. Freelance status gives you the freedom to pivot your activity. As you come into contact with other nomads, attend training courses and take on new assignments with your customers, your skills will evolve. You’ll also be better able to identify what you like and what you’re good at. The hardest part is getting started!

Some examples of professions: web developer, community manager, copywriter, business coach, online teacher, video editor, graphic designer, illustrator, photographer, virtual assistant, project manager, web writer, marketing consultant…

The first departure

Once your nomadic job has been chosen and set up, it’s time for the long-awaited first nomadic departure! Excitement is at its peak, but so is stress. Depending on whether you’re an employee or a freelancer, the stress points won’t be the same, but there are a number of imponderables to be dealt with before departure.

Make sure you have a nice, quiet place to work and be productive. Wifi, of course, needs to be reliable and fast. To minimize problems, it’s best to have several back-up solutions.

If the wifi doesn’t work properly, you can switch to connection sharing. French operator Free offers a 25GB international package for 70 destinations. As a last resort, you can use a local SIM card to get a better network with connection sharing. Check with the locals to choose the best local operator.

What’s more, travel hazards happen more frequently than you might think: lost suitcase, lost or broken phone, health problems… So make sure you have the right insurance to give you peace of mind! Qiti can help you find the best solution to ensure your freedom!

One last piece of advice: when leaving for the first time, it’s best to have a stable source of income (an already viable freelance activity or a salaried job). But you can also leave with savings to support your lifestyle for several months. Enjoy your trip!

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Article written by Tifany Clemenceau