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Why Portugal Is The Ideal Destination For Digital Nomads  

Being a digital nomad is one of the most popular trends in employment over the last decade. The dream of traveling through different countries and making a living at the same time has become reality for millions of people. For all the successful nomads there are also failures of course. This could simply be because they chose the wrong country to live in. 

What is a digital nomad?

You may be aware of remote working already, where someone is employed by a company but they perform their tasks elsewhere. This is usually either at home or on the road. A salesman may be sent on the road and then send back all the orders from his or her laptop to the main office. Alternatively, a graphic designer may work out of a spare bedroom and send in their designs to the agency. This is remote working.

A digital nomad works the same way except they (usually) work overseas. They are normal people who love to travel and want to be able to continue seeing new and interesting places while still making an income and keeping busy. As the word digital implies, they use technology such as laptops and the internet to be able to work. 

What are the best countries for digital nomads?

There are many things to consider when choosing a base to work from including and most important; cost-effectiveness and quality of living.

Some of the most popular countries are in South America, Europe, and Southeast Asia. Vietnam, Thailand, and Bali are popular destinations due to the low cost of living in places such as Chiang Mai. In Europe, Poland, the Czech Republic, and Georgia are becoming popular with travelers looking to work online. One country fits the profile for digital nomads perfectly though; Portugal. 

Why is Portugal so perfect for digital nomads?

It would be easy to skim over Portugal when thinking of where to base yourself for more obvious destinations such as Thailand. Chiang Mai in particular is full of digital nomads and there is a good support structure with lots of expats there and a laid-back way of living considering it is a city.

Looking at Portugal for digital nomads you can see it offers the same benefits and arguably more. There is a high quality of life in this country along with affordable fresh produce and seafood.

For a European country, it is affordable and the countryside and coastlines allow exploration and weekends by the sea. English is widely spoken so settling in isn’t too difficult and the ‘culture shock’ of moving to somewhere in Southeast Asia isn’t a problem as most things will be fairly familiar. One other benefit is that if you come from Europe then it is easy to fly home for visits as opposed to being based in Australia or Viet Nam. This also means that Portugal is easy to visit for some fact-finding before committing to moving there. A foreigner is allowed to buy land and property in Portugal and it welcomes immigrants with open arms. There are around 50,000 people from Britain alone living in the country already so someone could end up living permanently there.

What employment can a digital nomad find?

Programming, web, and app development can be popular choices if the person has the skills. Blogging is a way to find an income without having a boss but this takes time to build a fan base and have advertising that generates a reasonable income.

Running an online shop is a possibility especially if it involves dropshipping. This means the seller can keep traveling while never actually holding any stock. Another very popular way to be a digital nomad is to teach online. Most will teach English and there is a large online market in China although the teacher can be anywhere with a strong WiFi connection. 

What are the benefits?

For many, the main benefit is the lifestyle. Many people will still have to work some set hours but for a lot more they can perhaps choose when and how much they work. There is a freedom that can’t be obtained in a 9-5 office role that is available to the digital nomad. They may not even travel as much after a while because they have found the perfect place to live and work. 

Why do some digital nomads fail?

Of course, for every success, there is also a failure. Estimates vary but there are maybe over 4 million people working in this way so it makes sense that not everyone will succeed. Most failures occur because they are poorly prepared for a new lifestyle with a lack of savings and skills. If you are thinking of moving to Portugal then research the cities and areas you want to live in and decide how you can make a living before moving there. Planning is everything. 

In Conclusion

Portugal is possibly one of the most ideal destinations in the world and certainly in Europe for digital nomads. It has the beaches, culture, friendly locals, and good food that nomads hope to find but is also within reach of most people financially.

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