The public health crisis has changed many parts of our daily routine: commuting to the office, work meetings, and what it means to be an employee in the modern economy.
It has simultaneously promoted a concept that has been around for quite some time: digital nomadism. With the confinement, employees and employers have realized that, with the right tools, the office can be divided into dozens or hundreds of homes. But these “homes” don’t always have to be in the same place: and this is where digital nomads come in.
Associated with remote work, digital nomadism has gone from a distant concept, to suddenly being part of everyday life for millions of people around the world.
Not being tied to a specific geographical location and not having certain schedules is the essence of digital nomadism.
Who are the digital nomads?
They come from different countries and work anywhere. They have their own occupation and love to get to know new places. They are workers who can settle anywhere on the map. This is because they only need a computer or other mobile device to perform their professional activity.
Because they have the “travel bug”, they take advantage of the fact that they can work at a distance to get to know different places. And if, in the past, digital nomads were seen as tourists, today they already represent a community that promotes economic development and is reformulating a new labor paradigm.
What are the great benefits of working anywhere on the map?
One of the benefits of professional nomadism is the possibility to explore a local culture as a semi-resident, since the period of stay, working, extends beyond what would be a short visit during a vacation. In this sense, many governments have created visas for digital nomads, which has made it possible to make up for the shortfalls in tourism during the pandemic.
Flexibility is another advantage of this way of working. By combining mobility with flexibility, we have the perfect recipe for a lifestyle that escapes the traditional routine.
Other advantages include:
- Traveling full time: the ability to travel full time is one of the biggest advantages.
- Work anywhere you want: any location with internet access can become a workplace.
- Working any time: in general, the work of digital nomads is not evaluated by the number of hours worked, but by the results presented.
- Greater autonomy: whether you are a freelancer or a telecommuter, digital nomads are autonomous in their work.
And the disadvantages?
The most substantial are loneliness and the need to develop a high level of rigor, discipline, and responsibility. Without these factors, digital nomads cannot achieve the desired success in this remote regime.
Digital Nomadism globally
Several international destinations such as Dubai, Estonia, Spain and Germany have launched special conditions to attract digital nomads. In the case of Dubai, the emirate has launched an exclusive program that allows international professionals, and their families, to live in the destination while continuing to work for their company in their home country. Valid for one year, the program costs $287, plus medical insurance, and includes access to all necessary services, such as telecommunications and utilities.
Estonia has launched a new visa designed for digital nomads. This visa allows people working remotely for companies abroad to stay in Estonia for up to a year at a time.
Spain, meanwhile, has started inviting foreigners to work remotely by granting one-year residency visas. Germany, too, has a permit program aimed at freelancers and remote workers.
What about Portugal?
Portugal has been a favorite destination for digital nomads for some time now. In late 2020, Madeira launched an innovative project, Digital Nomad Madeira, aiming to attract 700 remote workers from around the world and promote the economy.
In addition, the 2022 State Budget proposal includes an enabling measure for digital nomads in Portugal. The Government proposes to extend the Non-Habitual Resident Regime (NHR) to digital nomads to attract professionals in various areas. If the measure is approved, the NHR will be extended to digital nomads to include activities that will be taxed with a 20% income tax rate.
Work from anywhere with Airdesk
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By centralizing all communications, Airdesk helps you create productive workflows to allow remote teams to stay on top of their tasks. All it takes for all this is a browser and an Internet connection. We also have an app for mobile devices that takes remote work to the next level.
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