The Buckets Guide To Digital Nomad Success
Do you often find yourself sitting in your 9–5 and daydreaming about that gap year you took in Australia? Or perhaps you’ve already used up your entire vacation allowance because of your endlessly itchy feet?
If this sounds familiar, then it looks like you have a serious case of digital nomadism that needs to be addressed. And by ‘addressed’, I mean by removing the ball and chain that’s tying you to your desk and booking a one-way ticket to Hawaii — where you’re guaranteed to find sun, sea, and a seriously renewed work ethic.
Not a sun person? Well, there’s always Alaska…
According to the overlords at Wikipedia, digital nomads can be defined as;
“Individuals that leverage technology to perform their work. It’s generally done in a nomadic manner wherein they work remotely — from home, away from home, while on the road — to accomplish tasks and goals that used to have traditionally taken place in a single stationary workplace. These digital nomads are often online business owners, web designers, graphic designers, software developers, and other types of knowledge workers who can perform work duties irrespective of physical location.”
In summary, a digital nomad is someone who utilizes technology to allow themselves to work wherever and whenever they wish. These lucky (and hardworking!) individuals get to travel the world whilst making a living as remote employees or entrepreneurs. However, the road to getting on the road isn’t always a smooth one for up-and-coming nomads and there are numerous obstacles to overcome; such as an unstable income, the perils of a turbulent internet connection, and the loneliness that can go hand-in-hand with working and travelling alone.
At Buckets, we only want the best for you (kind of like your Mom, minus the nagging). So, we’ve put together some key insider info to help you to navigate the path to digital nomad success.
In order to become a digital nomad in the first place, you’ll need a job that allows you the freedom to do so. This is pretty easy to sum up; if you can do it online, you can do it on the road.
Doing something that you’re passionate about really is the best way to ensure your success as a digital nomad. So, with that in mind, here are a few routes you can take:
Launch an online business: This is one of the most popular ports of entry for digital nomadism as it allows you to do what you’ve always wanted to do whilst travelling the world at the same time. Many successful digital nomads started off as regular 9–5 workers who built up enough experience to launch their own online consultancies/businesses and decided to turn their passion into a career. Whether you’re an ESL teacher, accountant, writer, or digital marketer, this is a great way to get yourself on the digital nomad path.
Transfer your current business online: If you’re already running a business, it may be possible to move it online or even manage it remotely.
Arrange to work remotely: If your current job heavily revolves around working on your computer, you may not have to ditch it at all! Why not have a chat with your boss about working remotely? The outcome of this will depend heavily on the quality your existing working relationship and whether your employer deems you suitable for remote work. Your boss will be more inclined to consider to your request if you’re already a real asset to the business, so you might want to start getting into their good books before you bring it up. After all, no-one wants to lose a good employee.
Don’t Have The Skills Yet? Don’t Panic!
If none of these options work for you, don’t worry — not all hope is lost! You simply need to look at upskilling into an area that will equip you with the skills you need to base your business online. And it doesn’t have to break the bank either.
Self-study is actually one of the best ways to build up your experience and your online work portfolio. Thankfully, businesses who hire and work with digital nomads really aren’t overly invested in University qualifications or the high school diploma you received when you were in the equivalent of your digital nomad diapers. These people want to see what you can do now and they want to see results.
One of the best ways to get a portfolio together is to start doing some extra work alongside your regular job; this will allow you to take on work that isn’t great pay but offers good exposure. Some of the best marketing opportunities out there are dressed up as one-off freelance gigs that hardly spark your interest at all. At this stage, you should never be dismissive of an opportunity to market yourself and your work — and don’t be afraid to pick up a few testimonials along the way either.
Check out these sites to browse through a range of remote working positions:
- We Work Remotely
- Angel list (select the remote option)
- Freelance Writing Gigs (this site quickly became my BFF when I first started freelancing)
- Cloudpeeps (with added support from a friendly and engaging freelance community)
- Working Nomads
And, most importantly of all, pitch your little heart out! Getting in touch with businesses to introduce yourself and offer your services could land you a dream gig that you didn’t even know existed. Personally, I’m a massive fan of the cold email pitch and it’s always worked well for me. If you need a helping hand with yours just leave us a comment below or fire off a tweet to @bucketsdotco. We’re always happy to offer some advice!
Ready To Go?
Yay!!! Once you’ve decided on what route you’re going to take on the job front, it’s time to look at what route your travels are going to take. When you’ve figured out where you’d like to go (or even simply where you’d like to start), you can check out the visa requirements for each country on Visa Mapper and check out accommodation options on Airbnb — or perhaps in a local hostel if you’re on a tighter budget.
Overall, renting an Airbnb is really the safer option because you can check out reviews from previous tenants and you’re less likely to have any serious issues crop up as a result. It doesn’t have to be expensive either, and there are some great cheap and cheerful finds available if you book in advance.
Don’t forget, there are numerous web tools at your disposal and you can plan out your entire work schedule and travel itinerary on Buckets too! So why not get started today and set yourself some goals towards achieving your digital nomad dream? Whatever direction your digital nomad journey takes you in, Buckets is here to help you along the way. Sign up for your free Buckets account today and start working on that checklist for your digital nomad adventure!