The changing profile of expats in 2021

21 January 2021
It is fair to say 2020 was a watershed year for the world. Lockdown, quarantines and restricting your movements may have left you with a desire for change.

Location independent working has been around for many years. But digital nomads were often a grey area especially when it came to visas and tax. In 2020 this began to change with some countries offering visas specifically targeting digital nomads. Many countries are also making the tax situation clearer for those making a living away from their home country. 

Research by MBO in 2020 showed the seismic shift in how we work has caused more people to embrace location independent working. If you are considering changing how you live and work, there is a lot to think about:

Unfortunately, there is more to becoming a digital nomad than picking a place on the map and packing your laptop. So, even if post COVID life feels a long way off in your country, it is not too early to begin planning your adventure when international travel is safe again. 

Some of the things you need to consider include what you are going to do for work when you are overseas? What technology you will need access to? How are you going to maintain relationships with clients? 

If you already work freelance you are ahead of the curve. If not, we have some great tips on how to become a digital nomad that will help.

Want to get a taste for digital nomad lifestyle before ever leaving the comfort of home? Discover the adventures of digital nomads already living their best life in an urban hub or tropical paradise. Get a feel for the challenges they faced and learn from their mistakes. 

These real-life accounts of digital nomad life are a treasure trove of useful information. They include everything from pre-departure vaccinations to what digital nomads wish they had left at home.  

It is worth seeking out a blog by a digital nomad in the country or region you are hoping to travel to. Read their posts for invaluable insight and recommendations when it comes to day to day life. 

Not sure which country or region to travel to? Or looking for somewhere new or inspiring? We look at some of the best places for digital nomads to settle all over the world. The article contains information on cost of living, working spaces and the vibe you can expect from each destination.

If you are looking for a quiet life a destination like Hoi An might be for you. Does something more cosmopolitan appeal? Have you considered Columbia? Discover these locations and more in our best places for digital nomads’ article. 

This was one of our most popular articles in 2020. We know this is an area that is challenging for many location independent workers. Not sure where you stand when it comes to your taxes when working online overseas?

We have compiled some of the most relevant articles we could find on digital nomad tax in one place. Hopefully one of them will have the answer to your tax question.

Wondering what you might need aside from your laptop? When it comes to packing for travel, less is usually more. At the same time, you want to make sure you have what you might need in a post-COVID world. We include everything from hygiene kits to packing cubes and a purifying water bottle that will make life as a digital nomad easier. 

We also remind you about the importance of having international health insurance when living and working overseas. It is important to understand the differences between international health insurance and standard travel insurance. This is particularly true if you plan to live overseas long term. 

Countries around the world are beginning to understand the value of digital nomads and are creating specific visas to meet their needs. In this article we look at countries that are attracting those following a nomadic life by offering visa options. We look at what you will need to obtain a visa. And how long you can stay in each country if you have one.

Not all location independent workers are single. There are couples or individuals with children choosing to live overseas for the economic or social benefits. If you are considering following a nomadic lifestyle with your children, we look at some of the challenges you might encounter. 

We also look at the positives of living a location independent life with your children. The amazing cultural experience they will have while you work remotely. 

There is no doubt that becoming a successful location independent freelance employee takes time, patience, and a lot of hard work. If this doesn’t scare you, the rewards of living a good life in the location of your dreams far outweigh the occasional struggle with your internet connection.