Thanks to the internet and the numerous digital professions, it’s no longer an obligation to spend years in an office confined between four walls. Working from a coffee shop in Stockholm, a beach in Bali, or a coworking space in Buenos Aires is totally possible. Some digital nomads hop from one destination to another, and some want to settle down. Living in the same place for several months quickly becomes essential when you work 30 or 40 hours a week. Moreover, falling in love with a place, and wanting to stay for more than 3 months is quite probable. That’s why digital nomad visas are highly sought after.
In this blog post:
What is a Digital Nomad?
A digital nomad is a remote worker who is self-employed or works for a company. They can carry out their activities from anywhere as long as they have proper internet access.
Most of these new workers operate in the fields of marketing, design, or teaching, but it’s also possible to travel and work as a tattoo artist, for example. Numerous jobs allow access to this lifestyle.
Why have the Digital Nomad Visas Been Created?
More and more countries are riding the wave of remote work abroad and are, therefore, launching their digital nomad visas. Indeed, from an economic standpoint, these new workers are interesting to some states that see the possibility of generating additional foreign income.
Digital nomad visas have been launched for various reasons:
- With the Covid pandemic, many countries experienced a steep drop in tourism and, therefore, their income related to this sector. One solution was to attract digital nomads for several months, which would generate significant income.
- For several years, some states have suffered a brain drain. Launching a digital nomad visa is a way to compensate for this drain by attracting other qualified workers.
- Taxes related to these visas are also appealing to countries, as they can collect more revenue.
- Lastly, most countries seek highly qualified digital nomads who work for clients in wealthier countries. This does not pose a threat to local employment while ensuring that these workers have significant spending power in the country.
What Are the Benefits of a Digital Nomad Visa for Remote Workers?
On Instagram, you might get the feeling that digital nomads change destinations as often as they change shirts. However, to maintain this lifestyle in the medium to long term, it’s essential to settle down for several weeks or even months to establish a true routine. That’s why digital nomad visas are so appealing.
Here are the main reasons that drive remote workers to take the necessary steps to obtain these valuable passes:
- The possibility of staying longer in the same destination to establish a real work and life routine.
- The opportunity to thoroughly explore a place and its lifestyle, make real connections and experience meaningful adventures.
- A better quality of life since some countries offer better infrastructure or a more interesting lifestyle than their home country.
- Saving money, as establishing long-term residence in countries with a lower cost of living can allow you to spend much less money while maintaining a pleasant life.
- No need to come up with schemes to extend your stay by leaving and re-entering the country.
20 Countries with a Digital Nomad Visa
Approximately fifty countries with a digital nomad visa in 2023. Here’s a brief list:
- Czech Republic
- Costa Rica
- Cape Verde
- South Africa
(Keep in mind that some countries don’t literally call their visas “digital nomad visas.”)
Of course, each country has its own entry conditions, and I strongly recommend checking each government’s websites to find out what these conditions are. This is especially true as they can change from day to day.
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Conditions for Obtaining a Visa
As mentioned earlier, each country has its own conditions. However, there are some commonalities:
- Gather the necessary documents: you’ll need your identification documents and one or several photos.
- Submit an application: most countries allow you to do this online, but some may ask you to go to the consulate.
- Provide proof of your income: indeed, you’ll often need to demonstrate that you have enough money to live in the country and that your money comes from clients or companies established in foreign countries.
Some destinations may also ask you to prove that you have housing on-site, you have taken out specific insurance, or you’ve passed an interview before receiving your valuable pass.
The digital nomad visa is a fantastic opportunity for all nomads who wish to settle in a country they greatly appreciate or are eager to explore without feeling constrained by tourist visas that typically last only 3 months.
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