Over the past few years, countless workers have ditched the office for a digital nomad lifestyle. The trend has so exploded that according to a study by Citrix, 50% of the workforce will be remote by 2020.
The lure behind the digital nomad lifestyle is the chance to travel, and the flexibility and freedom to set your hours. Most digital nomads subscribe to the mantra—you only live once—and as such, it is everyone’s personal responsibility to live their best life.
That said, it is essential to recognize that the cost of living when on the road can be high if not handled right. To help you keep costs down without having to eat ramen noodles every night, consider these tips.
1. Stay longer in a given place
Paying for accommodation per night is expensive. Therefore, instead of staying in a place for only a week or two, plan to stay for at least a month. If you do so, those in charge of your chosen accommodation will be inclined to give you better rates.
Moreover, the longer you stay, the higher your chances of connecting with locals. As you connect, the locals will probably give you more ideas on secure and less costly accommodation.
Note that accommodation is one of the biggest guzzlers of money for a digital nomad. If you are not careful, then all the money you earn might end up paying for accommodation.
Also, be on the lookout for alternative accommodation—Airbnb, staying with a local willing to host you, e.tc.
2. If you are a beginner, then start with inexpensive cities
Admittedly, a digital nomad should be able to go wherever he/she desires. Unfortunately, this is not always practical.
Consider this for a moment. Statistics indicate that a beginner digital nomad can make roughly $1300 per month on average. With such an amount, expensive cities such as London, Paris or New York are out.
However, as you gain experience and perfect your niche, then your earnings will increase. When that happens, you can consider tackling some of the world’s expensive cities. Remember though, that even if you have the means to travel to expensive locations, it is always advisable to balance this against savings.
3. Get a local SIM card as soon as you land in a given country
As a digital traveler, you cannot afford the crazy costs that come with roaming. Therefore, though it can be a bit of a hassle to purchase a new SIM card every few months as you move from country to country, it is better than the alternative.
A local SIM card will allow you to make calls, text and more importantly give you access to data for the internet. It is true that most places that digital nomads frequent such as coffee shops have free public Wi-Fi.
However, depending on the country and the number of people in the coffee shop, the speeds might be quite low. On the other hand, most mobile providers offer reasonably high speeds. If you are working on a time-sensitive job, then you will need these high speeds.
4. Get a VPN
One of the key ways that a VPN helps you to save on costs as a digital nomad is by protecting your data, your passwords, and email communications.
Note that every single day, cybercriminals steal at least 5 million records worldwide. The cost of one stolen record is roughly $141 and that puts the global average at $3.6 million.
Data breaches are expensive,and as a digital nomad, you cannot afford to be counted among those who are losing money. A VPN will encrypt your data ensuring that cybercriminals cannot access it.
Moreover, it will allow you to use public Wi-Fi in libraries or coffee shops without fear of eavesdroppers who monitor public connections with the aim of intercepting data.
Finally, remember that as a digital nomad, you will do most of your banking online. Considering how much cybercriminals focus the theft of money, you must triple protect your banking information. Again, thanks to military-grade encryption, a VPN will help ensure your finances are secure.
And the most attractive added benefit of all? Worldwide access to Netflix and a wide range of sports streaming platforms. A VPN is ideal for overcoming geo-blocks, so don’t worry about missing out on your favorite show or game as you go on the road. Pack a Netflix VPN in your digital suitcase and feel right at home wherever your travels take you.