When people have the ability to work remotely, many use it as a chance to work completely from home. 

Other people take it as a chance to not have a home at all! Instead, they become a digital nomad and travel from place to place, maintaining remote jobs all the while. 

For many, it’s a chance to travel to all the places they’ve always wanted to see. For others, it can be a chance to reside in a place with a low cost of living while earning a higher foreign salary. Regardless of your motives, it can be an enriching (and sometimes difficult!) experience. 

Here are 12 tips to make the process a bit easier.

Key Tips for Living as a Digital Nomad

#1. Establish a Routine

Traveling from country to country can be taxing on your body, spirit, and mind. One trick to help make it easier to form a routine that you can trust yourself to maintain. 

That way, even if you are in a new country, you still have the familiarity of your daily routine.

This daily routine will also help with your productivity, especially if you have the type of job that lets you work on your own schedule. 

For example, set up a workout class or appointment with a trainer at the same time each morning. Otherwise, you could easily wake up later in the morning and take your time getting ready, only to be forced to work deep into the evening to get everything done. 

Consider dedicating one hour (at least) each week just to planning out your travels. This can help you avoid last-minute expensive bookings.

#2. Choose Accommodations Wisely

Many digital nomads travel in a van or RV, but the majority use furnished apartments or homes by booking on Airbnb, hotels, hostels, or co-live communities.

Airbnbs can be more comfortable and private, but co-lives offer a more social environment, and they tend to be cheaper. Some co-lives even come with a designated coworking space, typically for an additional price. 

PRO-TIP: If you plan on working from home, make sure that you ask your Airbnb host to send you a photo of an internet speed test. Sometimes, hosts lie about their internet speed or don’t realize just how much power you really need in order to work from home. 

Also consider where you will work in your apartment. Perhaps the kitchen table will work fine for a time, but cleaning off the table every time you want to eat and then setting everything up again gets old quickly. If you don’t have an office in your apartment, then maybe you’ll want to rent a membership in a coworking space.

#3. Prioritize Internet Connectivity

One of the most common issues with becoming a digital nomad is finding reliable internet. A weak connection can mean missed deadlines, lousy sales pitches, and even losing clients. 

Have a backup plan for if the internet connection goes out in your house. You might want to research local reliable coworking offices nearby, just in case. For example, in some digital nomad hubs, like Puerto Escondido, Mexico, when fiber optic internet goes out at home, many digital nomads flock to the shops and flexible offices that have Starlink.

#4. Stay Organized

Traveling can become like an extra part-time job, especially if you are moving to a different country every few months.

Make sure you keep your travel plans and documents organized in a master folder. Some documents that can come in handy are:

  • Passport-sized photos (you can get these at AAA, and they come in handy if you need to get a new emergency passport)
  • Criminal background checks can help with getting work and getting visas
  • If you have a work contract, always have it printed out
  • Vaccination cards, vaccination records
  • Any allergies or medical history
  • Emergency contacts
  • The address of where you will be staying

Often, having this information on your phone isn’t enough, especially because when you arrive in a new country and need to share this information at an airport, your phone probably won’t work with a foreign SIM card.

#5. Engage in Work-Life Balance

Sometimes, digital nomads end up feeling burnt out by working and traveling full-time. 

Make sure you set boundaries between work and leisure. Engage in activities that encourage you to be present, like taking up hobbies, exploring local hobbies and restaurants, and socializing with other digital nomads like you who understand your way of thinking and living.

#6. Cultivate Relationships

By attending digital nomad cultural exchanges and spending time in digital nomad spaces, you can tap into a bright and rich international community. After just a few months, you may find that you have friends and connections all over the world. 

In coworking spaces and co-live communities, you may find many exciting networking opportunities as well, especially in fields like tech, writing, and design. 

#7. Budget Wisely

Your budget in your new home should be different from your budget back home. Being in a place with a lower cost of living is a great chance to save and invest large portions of your income. 

Try to find the balance between living like a local while also saving enough to maintain your life as a digital nomad. 

#8. Learn Local Etiquette

Digital nomads have been criticized by many countries and communities for driving up the cost of living. As the numbers of digital nomads continue to grow, we bear the responsibility of ensuring that we can travel without damaging our generous host countries. 

We can try to do that by adapting to local areas and acting with the grace and politeness of a grateful guest. 

Try to learn the local language, respect local traditions, and engage with your neighbors, becoming a part of the local community, not just an observer. 

#9. Health and Wellness

Especially if you are a freelancer and you can only earn when you are healthy, you must make an effort to uphold your health. Stay active, invest in travel insurance or global insurance, make friends, take time off to relax, and keep your stress levels under wraps. Each healthy, fresh food as well to give your immune system a lot of nutrition to work with.

#10. Document the Journey

Through activities like blogging, vlogging, and photography, you can connect with other travelers and share useful tips, and you will also have a gift for your future self to look back on. 

#11. Be Prepared for Challenges

The digital nomad life is the perfect example of something that looks easy and fun from the outside but that, in practice, truly requires much work and dedication. Unexpected issues like visa troubles and canceled flights must roll off your back without you needing to take out that anger on anyone else. 

Frustrations that come with language barriers and loneliness are also sure to come up. Confront the challenges head-on and use them as a chance to grow and become a more whole, adaptable person. Flex your problem-solving skills, and if it gets to be too much, don’t be afraid to reach out for help, preferably to someone else who has also traveled or lived abroad and understands your position. 

#12. Practice Flexibility

As we said, issues are sure to crop up. Try to look at them with humor and a sense of levity. By being flexible, we can all learn to not take ourselves too seriously.

How Industrious Can Help

The digital nomad life is a dynamic journey with unparalleled opportunities for exploration. You will never be the same person again once you decide to embark on a digital nomad life — and that’s a good thing. We ought to make major life decisions based not on who we are but on who we want to become. And if you’re reading this, then it’s likely that the person you’d like to become is an adventurous, curious, modern, and open-minded individual; in short, a digital nomad.

Use these tips as a foundation to create your own nomadic experience. And if you ever want guidance, check out the Industrious blog, where we provide tools and resources for nomads. 

We also have locations all over the world with luxurious offices that make digital nomads will feel right at home. Check out our access plans to get started. 


Siobhan Brier is a writer, editor, and translator. She has lived and worked as a digital nomad since 2019, predominantly in Latin America.