Due to the COVID-19 crisis, the number of professionals working remotely is at a constant rise, creating more and more digital nomads. But what is a digital nomad? Digital nomad is a person who is location-independent and utilizes technology to perform a certain job while traveling.
In 2018 there were around 5 million Americans that identified as a digital nomad. That number has now doubled to over 10.9 million digital nomads in the US alone, resulting in an increase of 50% in just those two years.
Millennials are a great example of aspiring digital nomads, as remote working becomes more utilized by companies. Because of this, HR managers may now need to adapt their Employee Value Proposals to fit the life-style of a future digital nomad, and offer more benefits to achieve work-life balance and ensure talent retention.
As the number of digital nomads continues to grow, individuals who identify as such are contributing more to a local economy in only two weeks rather than a high-spending person or family who is native to the country. This is because digital nomads stay in low-cost housing for months or even years, allowing for more expenses in local communities. Moreover, while staying in a country for a long period of time, a key factor for digital nomads is living as a local.
However, even though digital nomads may spend a long time in a certain place, they still have to balance work with pleasure. Because of this, digital nomads have a small window of free time in which regular travel guide recommendations may not apply to them.
One great tool that Jack and Ferdi has to offer is showcasing the best local places in one’s destination, resulting in a more authentic experience designed appropriately for the limited free time digital nomads have.
What are some of the ways countries can attract digital nomads?
- Provide a temporary worker visa
- Create more affordable housing amongst local communities
- Supply high speed internet throughout the country
- Have good public transportation.
The future of the travel industry is shifting as digital nomads are growing. Due to this, some changes will be made, the first one being the creation of digital nomad work visas. Some countries have already adopted this similar type of visa, including Antigua, Dominica, and Portugal, allowing digital nomads to work abroad. Hotels will also face a shift from perhaps a simple hotel room to a more apartment style offering, since digital nomads stay for long periods of time. Lastly, round trip flights may have less value as digital nomads do not wish to return from where they came from but continue their journey to a different destination.