We asked guest contributor Kristin Messina, co-founder of YonderWork, an international community experience for remote workers combining travel, co-working
Travel planning can be a laborious and painful process. But it can be even more stressful if you're doing it last minute and you don't do your research. Some countries may require you to have a return or onward ticket before you can obtain a visa or get on a plane. Others may require documented proof of certain vaccinations. If you do your homework beforehand, you can save yourself a lot of frustration before your trip begins.
For the digital nomad, a reliable connection to the internet is about as important as drinking water. Being fully equipped will allow you to stay powered, connected and productive. The first thing you will need is a universal power adaptor. Make sure to get a local SIM card when you arrive; it will not only help you communicate and navigate but you can use it as an internet hotspot for your laptop. If your phone is locked (check with your provider) you can use your SIM with a USB WiFi dongle instead. And, while antiquated, a USB stick can come in real handy if you're in a time crunch and need to print a copy of your passport from the local print shop.
World Nomads can provide cover for your digital gear if it's damaged or stolen, as well as medical help and medical evacuation.
There are a plethora of helpful apps out there that can help you adjust quickly to new environments. Triposo has offline country guides which give you all of the basics including key phrases in multiple languages, currency conversion rates, and offline maps. The Google Translate app is also great, especially its ability to translate menus and signs in real time. Use Uber or a local taxi app to get to your next destination safely and without the need to haggle. With WiFi SweetSpots you can measure the speed of your WiFi before you sit down at a coffee shop or before you check into a hotel. iScanner is also a great app for scanning your receipts or important documents.
As a digital nomad, you are combining travel and work, which makes it important to find a proper work-life balance. A great way to get the best of both worlds is to take your time and travel slowly. It will allow you more time to get work done, immerse in the local culture, and enjoy life without having to pack your stuff and start anew every few days.
This is the most important part to ensuring success as a digital nomad, something we at YonderWork are all about. Loneliness on the road is one of the most common complaints of digital nomads. Traveling solo for a long period of time can get old quick if you don't have traveling buddies to meet up with
Trust me, you don't want to work out of your hotel or villa all day. Get up, get out, and find an external environment to get your work done. Defining a workspace separate from your living space will boost your productivity and also help you set boundaries between work and leisure time. At YonderWork we use coworking spaces for the added benefits of skill sharing, networking, consistently strong internet, and sparking creativity.
Of course, this depends on your work requirements, but if you can set your own hours, then work according to your own body clock. If you are not a morning person, sleep in and maximize your efficiency in the afternoon and evening hours. This will work wonders in allowing you to get more out of each workday.
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