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Being a translator and a digital nomad.

The ways of working evolve and teleworking as well. As you’ve probably noticed, the advent of new digital technologies together with the coronavirus crisis has completely changed our lives and our working methods. A lot more workers work from home and that has become a normality. Welcome to the boom of digital nomadism. 

This term sounds familiar? Well for those who don’t know, digital nomads are people who work in a connected profession and usually never need anything more than a laptop and Wi-Fi. This allows them to work without any geographical constraint and therefore travel at the same time. Digital nomadism is more than a profession, it’s a lifestyle. So who are those digital nomads? They are mostly the new generation, people who have grown up with the development of computers and access to high-speed Internet. Digital nomads chose the freedom to travel to not have a ‘fixed home’.

Several professions lend themselves to digital nomadism, in other words, any jobs that can be done remotely. For example, web professions such as community manager, web editor or graphic designer are perfectly suited to digital nomadism. The freelance translator is also particularly successful, it is entirely possible to carry out their activity from anywhere in the world. 

Advantages and disadvantages of being a freelance translator:

If you work as a freelance translator, you probably already know all the good advantages that come with it. Just like working anywhere in the world or simply being the one in charge of your work. You can also enjoy a warmer climate, a better standard of living and discover the world without having to give up your professional activity. When working in a company you are imposed fixed hours and a certain rhythm of work, whereas working as a freelance translator, will let you decide on the planning of your day. You are free to be more of an evening or morning person. In other words, all of this will simply let you escape from your routine. 

Like many things, not all is rosy. This geographical freedom can also have some repercussions on your life. Being a freelance translator also means running your own business and not everyone, for a variety of reasons, feels capable of doing so. If you have ever thought about working as a freelance translator, there are many questions you have probably already asked yourself: How do you approach direct clients? How do you set your prices? How do you handle communication with clients or agencies? Etc. The internet connection is another aspect that comes with some constraints. It is indeed essential to the activity of the digital nomad, but not 100% reliable or even present in certain regions of the world.

Best destinations for digital nomads:

Regardless if you’re working in a country on the other side of the world, with a laptop and a good Internet connection, you can settle anywhere you want. For the rest, it’s a matter of personal taste. But to help you make your choice, here are the four ideal destinations for digital nomads. These countries meet the main criteria for developing your business: a low cost of living, a good internet connection, a warm welcome and an attractive cultural movement. 

1. Chiang Mai, Thailand 
chiang mai, thailand, travel,dekar's documents

Chiang Mai has a pretty good reputation amongst digital nomads. Its paradisiacal beaches and healthy lifestyle will seduce those of you who wish to adopt a relaxed pace and connect with nature. On the agenda: relaxation, creation and dynamism, in a modern city that has kept its authenticity. Chiang Mai is home to a large community of digital nomads from all over the world, so you won’t feel too lonely.

2. Medellin, Colombia 
medellin, colombia, travel, dekar's documents

If there’s one thing besides Wi-Fi that digital nomads can’t live without, it’s coffee. This is perfect because Colombia is the best place in the world for coffee lovers, and Medellin will therefore become your ideal workplace between all its cafes and restaurants set up as co-working spaces like Selina, in El Poblado. Being the second-largest city in the country, Medellin is full of charm and that is undeniably due to its perfect spring climate, the many cultural and nightlife activities and the breathtaking scenery of the surrounding nature.

3. Ubud, Bali 
ubud, bali, travel, dekar's documents

Bali is the dream destination for digital nomads, especially Ubud which attracts many digital nomads every year. Asia is globally the dream continent for these freelancers. Indeed, it is full of paradisiacal landscapes and the cost of living is so low. Ubud offers an unbeatable standard of living, allowing you to work at your own pace and enjoy the country’s many attractions. You’ll have plenty of time to enjoy the beautiful nature, the Balinese cuisine, the tender beach life and the lively nightlife.

4. Valencia, Spain 
valencia, spain, travel, dekar's documents

Less exotic, but just as exciting, Valencia a full-bloom destination amongst digital nomads. Is it the sun that attracts them? The low cost of living? The paella maybe? Yes indeed, but other important factors are involved, like the fact that Valencia is a city made up of incubators and accelerators. In addition to active investment funds. Every year in Valencia, more than a hundred start-ups are created, with the help of incubators such as Lanzadera and EDEM. Valencia offers everything you would expect as a digital nomad. That will allow you to meet people from all over the world.

Useful tips fo digital nomads:

Leaving everything behind to go to the other side of the world requires a minimum of preparation. Here are a few tips for digital nomads that will help you prepare for your experience. 

  • Make sure you have a reliable internet connection. Wherever possible, especially if you are travelling abroad, arrange for internet access before you leave. Don’t just trust the description of your rental that mentions Wi-Fi. Ask the host about upload/download speeds. Find out where the cafes or coworking spaces are, and test out several locations if you can, in case you need to move.
  • Stick to your routine. No matter where you work, try to stick to a routine. It can be as simple as starting by always getting up around the same time and having a good breakfast, then, of course, finding a quiet space to work without interruption. Don’t forget to end your typical working day with a bit of sunshine (when possible), regardless of location or circumstances.
  • Notify the administrative services of your departure and keep a postal address. It is often tempting to cast off without taking the time to notify the administrative services, the tax authorities etc. But this is a big mistake. Indeed, contact with the administrative services can be very complicated from abroad. It is better to have a dedicated contact person or to have given advance notice of your departure to ensure that you are in good standing with the administrative services.
  • Join a digital nomad Facebook group. The digital nomadic life can be very lonely; however, a large number of Facebook groups have therefore emerged to bring together and facilitate meetings. In these groups, you can also find and exchange useful information between digital nomads from all over the world. In addition, meet-up events are regularly organised. 

Some examples of Facebook groups to join:
Digital Nomads around the world
Digital Nomads Medellin
Expats in Valencia

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