So you want to be a digital nomad? Here’s what you need to pack
Many of us dream about leaving behind the daily grind and traveling the world as a digital nomad. This lifestyle definitely has benefits, but there is some essential gear you will need for your never-ending journey.
- According to the NYTimes, around 43% of US workers spend some time working remotely.
- But, only a fraction of those workers are digital nomads. Many have amazing personal stories to tell.
- Planning your first working vacation? Check out Nomad List for some inspiration.
- Figuring out where you want to go can be tricky and expensive. Using an app like Skyscanner helps you find the cheapest flights, best hotels, and even car rentals.
Until the Internet was born, travel was something you did on vacation. Only cabin crew and diplomats could see the world while doing their job. But how times have changed. A growing number of people have no fixed abode, instead choosing to work from their latest Airbnb rental. These digital nomads get to experience all the world has to offer, without taking a pay cut. We have a few of them working at Gadget Flow.
It sounds tempting, we know. But before you jump feet first into this enticing lifestyle, it’s worth thinking about the practicalities. You will still need to work 40 hours a week, even if your temporary office is a Peruvian Internet café. In addition, you will only be able to take what you can carry from one place to the next. To help you get started, we’ve compiled a list of essential gear you will need to pack.
How to pack and what to take
What you take on your working adventure depends on how far, and for how long, you plan to travel. The absolute essentials include your passport, payment methods, a power adapter, and some clothes.
While it’s a good idea to exchange some money before you leave home, the Qmplete Smart Digital Wallet is another neat option. Instead of carrying around all your credit cards, you can simply slip this smart card into your pocket. The touchscreen display lets you pick which card you want to use when you check out and you can even earn points.
As anyone who has tried to pack a suitcase knows, clothes take up lots of room. The answer is to use vacuum bags. Simply load your clothes into these sealed containers, and use something like Wacù to remove the air. This should squash your wardrobe down to just a fraction of the size.
If possible, it’s best to take a suitcase and a smaller bag on your nomadic trip. The larger bag lets you carry more kit, while a backpack is better when you want to explore your new surroundings.
In terms of regular suitcases, it’s difficult to beat the Bluesmart Series 2 case. This beast has automatic locking, built-in charging ports and many more smart features.
If you need to reduce weight, the Duffle Backpack Sport set would be a better bet. This travel pack includes three separate bags, which can be zipped together to form different configurations.
Other backpacks we like:
- The TSA-approved NOMATIC backpack and travel pack
- Hauser’s Weatherproof Hydration Pack helps you quench your thirst on long hikes
- GORUCK GR3 carry-on backpack offers a generous 45-liter capacity
The nomadic office
Technically speaking, you only need a laptop and an Internet connection to work as a digital nomad. But as the weeks roll by, you may find yourself missing the creature comforts of your home office. Thankfully, there are ways to improve your working conditions on the road.
For instance, the Roost Laptop Stand lets you raise your laptop to the perfect angle for typing. In true nomadic fashion, it folds down easily for storage, measuring just 1.3 inches thick.
In addition, there are some digital investments that are worth making. A good VPN will allow you to bypass local online restrictions, while cloud storage means you can back up your files. The Fortigis AI VPN Router uses artificial intelligence to keep your more secure than ever. That said, it’s also worth investing in a flash drive, as you may not have the bandwidth to upload larger files.
Keeping your laptop and phone charged is always a concern in a foreign country. Especially if you’re traveling to a few countries, it can be difficult (and annoying) to bring the right plug or converter. That’s why you should always take a power bank on your trip.
The best backup batteries have multiple ports and a large capacity. We’ve always liked mophie products. The new Powerstation range adds an extra 15 hours of battery life to your MacBook, yet it weighs just 26 ounces.
To help you become a digital nomad, we’ve compiled a list of essential kit you will need to pack.Click to tweet
You might also want to grab a travel adapter. Passport by Zendure should keep you powered around the world, with built-in fuses to protect your gadgets.
Seeing the sights
There really is no point in becoming a digital nomad unless you can enjoy the travel aspect. After you have packed the bare essentials, think about what will help you explore.
Along with the backpacks discussed earlier, you might want to take an action camera to capture your adventures. You can also download the Google Translate app or grab the Mesay Voice Translator to talk with the locals.
Living the nomad life
The nomadic lifestyle isn’t for everyone. There are plenty of aspects that can be tough to navigate. But if you want to see the world, there is no better way to travel on a budget. This list is not definitive, but hopefully, it should give you some prompts for your packing list.
Are you a digital nomad? Share your top tips in the comments!
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