Digital Nomads Key Facts

Article in partnership with Day Translations.

Is the concept of digital nomads evolving? Who is more likely to become a digital nomad? Where do digital nomads mostly come from?

A survey published by Euronews tried to answer these questions after asking a sample of 1,200 digital nomads over the course of 2023.

Who Is a Digital Nomad Today?

The majority of digital nomads are in their thirties, with about a quarter aged between 18 and 29.

The split between men and women is almost equal with men making 55% of the total.

About a third of digital nomads works as a freelancer; another third works as a remote employee and 13% of digital nomads work as entrepreneurs.

Where Are Digital Nomads From?

The majority of digital nomads come from the United States (37% of the total), then the second largest group originates from the United Kingdom (12% of the total) and the third group according to size comes from Germany (making 5% of the total).

Where Do Digital Nomads Want to Travel to?

The most popular destinations that digital nomads choose to travel to are:

  • Portugal
  • Spain
  • Argentina
  • Thailand.

Other locations on digital nomads’ wishlist include:

  • Brazil
  • Sri Lanka
  • Madeira.

What Worries Digital Nomads the Most?

Finding short term accommodation has become more challenging in recent years, with countries responding to the backlash of lack of available housing by highly regulating the short term rental market or, in some cases, completely banning it.

AirBnB has been on the receiving end of such backlash, in particular, with places such as Portugal, for example, cracking down on new listings of properties being offered on a short let basis after prices have been spiralling out of control.

What Jobs Are Suitable for Digital Nomads?

According to Flexjobs the best jobs for digital nomads offering flexibility and reasonable rates are:

  • project manager
  • social media manager
  • editor/writer
  • online teacher/coach/tutor
  • customer service/online assistant
  • web developer.

What Do Digital Nomads Do?

According to Techtarget to be a digital nomad you need to be able to work from any location connecting remotely while travelling.

This means that digital nomads are likely to change the location where they work from every few days, weeks or months. To make this lifestyle more sustainable and manageable, experienced digital nomads advise to settle in one location for several months at a time as it helps with productivity. Searching for accommodation within budget is a key consideration and can be extremely time-consuming. When travelling frequently, finding somewhere to sleep can take up most of the day and that time could be better invested in other activities, especially if you are working on projects with strict deadlines.

One of the perks of being a digital nomad is the available opportunities to get to know new cultures and people. The more discerning nomads put effort into researching the history and traditions of places they are visiting, and join local groups to meet like-minded people. This is also a necessity because travelling throughout the year can feel lonely at times as digital nomads are away from friends, family, communities and environments they are familiar with.

What Languages Should Digital Nomads Learn?

While teaching English as a foreign language is still a desirable job option for digital nomads with a passion for travelling, learning multiple languages can be a great asset. Great choices for digital nomads are Spanish, Portuguese and Mandarin. Of course for more exotic locations the choices will be different, but at least it is likely that many people will understand English.

Harvard Business Review advises digital nomads to learn local languages to become more integrated in the community and find out about activities and clubs to join (fancy learning how to go paddle boarding in Croatia, for example?). Volunteering and working with charities can also be good options for digital nomads who want to give back while also interacting with local people and learn their language.

Volunteering has the potential to counteract the reputation that digital nomads have abroad, as their lifestyle has been pointed at to have an effect on prices, raising the cost of living by increasing the demand for housing and services.