In a world where people work from beaches and mountains on laptops, you might be wondering what a nomadic lifestyle is and why so many people choose it.
Until a decade ago, the idea of doing remote work and traveling around the world with your laptop while earning a living wage was a pipe dream. It is now a well-known fact for millions of people.
There was a significant increase in remote work in 2020, and many companies decided to allow employees to work remotely if they so desired. This prompted remote workers to consider living in more affordable and beautiful locations to take advantage of their newfound freedom.
So, what exactly is this modern nomadic lifestyle that so many people are choosing, and is it right for you?
A Brief History of the Nomadic Lifestyle
Tens of thousands of years ago, humans began as nomads. We hunted and gathered our food before moving on to the next location when our supplies ran out. Nomadism is not a new concept.
However, once we discovered agriculture and learned how to farm, we began to settle down and form communities. After a few centuries, we have our modern-day society, complete with large cities and establishments.
You most likely know someone who was born and raised in the town where they now reside and has a family. Some people choose to live in the same place their entire lives.
However, if we return to our roots and take advantage of how accessible the rest of the world has become as a result of technology and transportation, we can once again embrace a nomadic lifestyle.
The Modern Nomadic Lifestyle
Digital nomads are people who choose to live a nomadic lifestyle.
This new term was coined in 1999 to describe people who move from location to location while working remotely from their computers. To survive, all they require is a reliable internet connection.
You’ve probably seen people on social media sitting with their laptops in front of beautiful scenery, such as a tropical beach, rolling Italian hills, or somewhere secluded in the mountains.
There are numerous ways to live a nomadic lifestyle. Digital nomads have an unrivaled opportunity to design the life they want and break free from the rigid mold that society has formed and shaped for us.
Of course, there are advantages and disadvantages to a nomadic lifestyle, but the benefits outweigh the difficulties and obstacles that digital nomads must overcome.
In this article, we’ll look at the various types of nomadic lifestyles and the signs that they might be right for you.
Is a Nomadic Lifestyle Right for You?
There is no right or wrong way to live your life, which is why so many people live in such unique and diverse ways.
A digital nomad lifestyle is ideal for some people, while others prefer to stay in one place and establish a routine. There is no correct response!
However, there are a few indicators you can look for to see if you’re cut out for a nomadic lifestyle.
You Work Remotely (Or Want To)
If you’re searching for a remote job, make sure to check out our complete list of popular digital nomad job ideas to help.
You must have a remote job or a passive stream of income in order to live a life of freedom in which you can go wherever you want, whenever you want. You can support your lifestyle with this income.
There are literally thousands of different digital nomad jobs available. You can work for a company, start your own business, or work as a freelancer with clients all over the world. Working in IT, embracing your creativity as a photographer, or developing your own brand: if you can do it from a laptop, you can be nomadic!
If you’re looking for a remote job, check out our comprehensive list of popular digital nomad job ideas.
You Love Exploring New Destinations
If you enjoy traveling and learning about new cultures, sights, foods, and activities, becoming a digital nomad could be exactly what you’ve been looking for.
Because a nomadic lifestyle entails traveling to various locations, it necessitates an interest in exploration. If you are fascinated by new cities and want to see new sights and meet new people, this lifestyle allows you to do so as often as you like!
There are, in fact, specific locations that are ideal for remote workers who live a nomadic lifestyle. If you’re not sure where to go, our 12-month digital nomad itinerary can help you figure it out.
You Don’t Mind Minimalism
The majority of nomads live out of their backpacks or suitcases. However, some people travel with their homes, but we’ll get into that later.
No matter how you travel as a digital nomad, you must accept the fact that you are a minimalist. One suitcase can only hold so many pairs of shoes, t-shirts, device chargers, and books. As a result, you should adopt a minimalist mindset and try not to place too much emphasis on material things.
If you have a personality that makes it difficult to let go of things and like to collect things, a nomadic lifestyle may be difficult for you.
Not sure what to pack as a digital nomad? We’ve put together the ultimate packing list with everything you’ll need while embarking on this adventurous lifestyle.
There is a distinction between people who spend the majority of their lives in their hometowns and those who travel the world. The difference is their level of open-mindedness.
To be a digital nomad and travel the world, you must be open to new experiences, learn new ways of life, and respect other people’s beliefs. Otherwise, you will feel very uneasy in a variety of locations and situations.
This is what we call the digital nomad mindset. To be successful in this remote way of life, you must adopt this mindset in order to fully realize your potential and find joy in the midst of adversity.
You’re Motivated to Live the Life You Want
If you’re reading this, you probably don’t want to conform to society’s expectations of getting an office job and going through major life events. Instead, you want more freedom and the ability to live on your own terms.
Going against the grain is, to say the least, difficult. However, you must be truly motivated to create the life you desire, especially if it is a nomadic one.
This motivation will keep you going through the difficulties and periods of loneliness that many nomads face. However, if you find that a nomadic lifestyle is right for you, the benefits outweigh the drawbacks.
Types of Nomadic Living
Now that we’ve defined what a nomadic lifestyle is, it’s time to look at the various ways to live it.
As I always say, the nomadic lifestyle is unique to each individual and can be tailored to your specific desires and needs.
Van life may be the best option for remote employees who need to work specific hours of the day and cannot leave their time zone. This is a remote way of life in which you either buy a camper or RV, or convert a van into a mobile home and drive around.
This is a very popular nomadic lifestyle in America, and it is gaining popularity in Europe as well. You’ll travel from place to place in your mobile home, discovering new places along the way.
One of the primary advantages of this way of life is that you can travel with more belongings and will always have a familiar and comfortable place to sleep. You’ll also save money on rent for an apartment you’ll never use because you’ll be bringing your home with you!
The traditional digital nomad lifestyle is expanding to include global travel. This frequently entails moving to a country with a lower cost of living in order to stretch your salary further.
Digital nomads who travel to other countries usually use tourist visas and do not have a fixed address. They travel strategically to avoid overstaying visas and can plan accordingly.
This lifestyle can quickly become exhausting as you try to navigate language barriers, new cultures, and simple everyday tasks like going to the grocery store. However, this is a fantastic way to live and to broaden your horizons.
But how do people make a living while traveling the world?
The Hostel Hopper
Hostels are an excellent way to travel the world on a budget. They’re available in most major cities and are frequently less expensive than hotels and Airbnbs. It’s also a great place to meet other people who share your interests.
A hostel-hopping digital nomad is someone who doesn’t mind sharing a room with other travelers and typically travels with only a backpack. They’re looking for the best experiences at the lowest possible cost.
They also relocate frequently, whether from city to city or country to country.
Staying in a hostel has numerous advantages, but it is not for everyone.
The Slow Traveler
Some digital nomads prefer to travel slowly around the world, giving themselves time to get to know a city and establish routines while abroad.
One option is to rent long-term Airbnbs for a month or two at a time. To avoid commissions and cleaning fees, some nomads look for short-term rentals in local Facebook groups.
Slow traveling has a much slower pace than moving around every week or so. It allows you to maintain some normalcy in your days while incorporating occasional tourist excursions.
This is my personal way of living a nomadic lifestyle because it allows me to really get to know a place and create incredible memories that I will cherish for the rest of my life.
House sitting is one hack that can help you save money while living nomadically. Homeowners all over the world look for people to watch their pets or simply look after their home while they are away on business or vacation.
Typically, you are not compensated for this work, but you do receive free housing. Some digital nomads plan their trips around house sitting gigs, spending a week or two in an Airbnb and another week housesitting. As a result, they only have to pay for lodging for a fraction of the time.
The Visa Enthusiast
Finally, there is the digital nomad visa enthusiast. This lifestyle is for those who want to live as an expat without fully relocating to another country.
There are over 25 countries that offer digital nomad visas and welcome remote workers to temporarily live in their country, so there are many options for where to go.
After a year or two of living in a country with a digital nomad visa, this nomad will apply for another visa and relocate to another country.
This is ideal for people who want to integrate into a community and truly understand what it’s like to live in a foreign country.
Things Nobody Tells You About A Nomadic Lifestyle
IT’S NOT EASY
I’ll start with the obvious: transitioning to a nomadic lifestyle is difficult. At least, this was my experience. G was far more excited than I was. Because I come from a poor family, I had to work very hard for the things I bought for myself when I first moved to the UK. Starting with the coffee machine and progressing to our first car.
We worked for every single item in our house. We purchased it. My husband and I went shopping and bought those items. It was difficult to accept the fact that they would all be gone. It took a week of twisting and turning for me to say, OK, I’m ready to move. It wasn’t an easy decision, and I still have my doubts about it. It was excruciatingly painful to witness the life we had built together being sold and taken away by complete strangers.
If you decide the nomadic lifestyle is for you, keep all of this in mind and perhaps ease into it. If you’re wondering how to become a nomad, the answer is simple. Determine how much money you’ll need each month to travel and live in the country of your choice. Look for jobs that allow you to work from anywhere in the world. In a nutshell, that’s it.
FOR HOW LONG WILL YOU GO?
Can you afford a year of travel? Do you want to stay somewhere for a month and then move on? Do you want to start slowly and settle in for 6 months before continuing your journey? We like to have a base for a while, which is why we usually settle somewhere for 3-6 months at a time.
This allowed us to fully immerse ourselves in a new culture and learn a lot from our new experiences. It’s also great for work because we can devote more time to our businesses. It’s financially advantageous because we never stay in AirBnBs and instead rent from locals on a long-term basis.
Nobody warns digital nomads that living without a fixed address can be extremely difficult. It’s exhausting to be on the road all the time. It can interfere with sleep, work, relationships, and workflow. So, consider which type of nomadic lifestyle is best suited to your current situation.
Can You Live a Semi-Nomadic Lifestyle?
I’ll say it again: a nomadic lifestyle is how you make it. So, do you have the option of being semi-nomadic? Absolutely!
Many people choose to be nomadic during the winter months to avoid the cold and stay at home during the summer. Or perhaps they travel for several months at a time and return home when it is convenient.
The disadvantage of this is that if you rent or own your home, you will be paying your rent or mortgage even if you are not living there. But, if your finances allow it or you’ve devised a way to make it worthwhile, go for it!
A semi-nomadic lifestyle is entirely feasible and may be preferable to becoming a full-time nomad for some people.
Everything You Need to Live a Nomadic Lifestyle
So, after reading this article, do you think the nomadic lifestyle is for you?
If you said yes, you should keep reading because we have a solution to make your journey even easier!
Many digital nomads had to figure out how to support their nomadic lifestyle on their own. Just as we did.
You no longer have to do it alone. We founded Inked Review to educate people on how to live a nomadic lifestyle. Learn from our mistakes and get a head start on living your dream life.