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PIcture of Sam sitting on a sofa with a small dog

S2 Ep 11 | Become Digital Nomad 2021 | Sam Anthony


Introducing Sam from Alternative Travelers

In today’s episode, we’ll be talking to Sam who along with her partner Veren are the couple behind the blog Alternative Travelers and also more recently the Alternative Travelers podcast. They have been one of the big vegan travel bloggers who have created some of the best vegan travel city guides out there especially in Spain, a place they spent a lot of time. I actually interviewed Sam and Veren way back in Season 1 episode 5 which I will link in the show notes. They also have a book on a guide to get set up as a housesitter as well in case you decide that this approach might be something you want to really dig your teeth into. I’ll link that in the show notes too of course.

So, our topic of discussion today was recorded just as the pandemic was getting a bit crazy and the topic is being a digital nomad. 

Digital nomadism in 2021 and beyond

Before the pandemic, digital nomadism was starting to get really popular amongst certain people. I honestly think that the pandemic has probably changed a lot of this in ways.

Let’s talk about this…

Nomads forced ‘home’ during the pandemic:

At the start of the pandemic, many countries including Canada started asking their citizens to come home. Many people living and traveling overseas were faced with a difficult decision to come home. While they might have felt safe where they were, they didn’t know what would happen after their visas expired and whether there would be flights to take them home. The result for many people who did decide to stay was that not only could they not go home, but that their travel insurance became no longer valid. While that crazy time has passed, there is plenty we can learn from this terrible situation as we plan for future travels whether it is having the right insurance as well as always having some funds to use as a backup in these crazy situations.

Everyone now knows we ‘can’ work from home:

An interesting thing that has come out of the pandemic is the fact that employers and employees have realized that we can actually work from home. While there seems to be a lot of feelings and opinions on how effective and productive it is, I wonder if employers are going to be MUCH more open to employees wanting to work remotely.  Could this mean that we might have a surge in people wanting to travel and work at the same time when travel does get back to normal? I don’t know, but I wonder if it might be a new era in terms of what our workplace looks like.

Increases in long-term visas:

Something that has been somewhat of a travel trend in recent years and we have seen this in the common months is an increase in nations deciding to encourage visitors to stay for longer visas. Many of these destinations are hoping the remote work visas will generate income to help make up for lost tourism revenue due to the pandemic. Why not invite people who will stay for longer periods of time which makes it worthwhile for the traveler to stay. It is worth noting that these kinds of visas were becoming increasingly introduced, the pandemic has accelerated this, and now countries like Barbados, Costa Rica, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Germany, Georgia, and many more now available, and many other countries are considering similar types of visas.

An article I was reading (which I will link in the show notes) talks about these countries that are launching these visa programs further but I want to read this part to you. The Expert Vagabond blog tells us that this relatively new phenomenon of countries launching digital nomad visas to attract remote workers was predicted over 20-years ago by Japanese technologist Tsugio Makimoto who wrote that remote working would force nations “to compete for citizens”, and that digital nomad-ism would prompt “declines in materialism and nationalism”. His prophecy is coming true, and I fully expect to see many more nations opening up their borders to these “citizens of the world” who are able to work remotely from their laptops in the years to come.

Is the information still relevant?

All that being said, despite my recording with Sam about a year ago now it is still useful. We discuss many topics:

  • The pros and cons of this lifestyle
  • The importance of insurance
  • How to stay healthy
  • how to manage debt
  • and more

Of course, the pandemic is not over yet, but many of us have fallen into a routine of working from home. We know we can do it, we might have an employer who might be more open to requests for remote work and (I hope this is you), you have managed to save more money because you know, we haven’t been going out or traveling. Perhaps being a digital nomad of some sort might be a bit closer to reality. If this is the case this podcast might be what you need to get you a little closer.

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