Traveling solo and working abroad may seem easy on Instagram, but this kind of lifestyle is anything but easy. Digital nomadism takes a lot of continual planning, as it hardly ever allows you to settle in the same place for a longer period of time. Staying safe is an issue, too.
Once you start packing for your first trip as a digital nomad, remember this post and return to us for safety tips. This 7-item checklist consists of essentials only. Everything else you’ll be able to obtain and buy, but traveling without these items can be an accident waiting to happen.
1. Travel Insurance
Never leave the comfort of your home country without travel insurance.
Whether you’re planning your journey alone or with some help from your travel agent, make a reminder for yourself not to forget about travel insurance. According to a consumer advocate from Forbes, the best place to buy travel insurance is independent comparison sites.
Just like other brand and price comparison sites, these also allow you to get all the information you need in just one place. Not only are these sites pretty straightforward about additional expenses and the fine print, but they are also very helpful when it comes to customization.
This means that you’ll be able to choose the best and most affordable travel insurance based on your itinerary, including health insurance, a separate medical plan, adventure sports coverage, emergency evacuation, and trip interruption coverage. Try TripInsurance.com.
2. A Light Backpack
As a digital nomad, you’ll spend a lot of time traveling from place to place with a laptop on your back. Because you’ll be earning money online, a PC is the only truly essential gadget you’ll need. Make it as light as you possibly can, or you’ll regret taking it with you in the first place.
Of course, lighter laptops that offer high performance usually cost a bit more.
Remind yourself that this is not something you should be frugal about. Pretty much every part of your journey will depend on your laptop, from booking tickets and arranging accommodation to finding job opportunities and communicating with people back home.
3. Raincoat & Boots
You don’t want to find yourself stranded alone on some tropical island in the middle of a cyclone and with no place to escape. This is a natural part of the digital nomadism experience, however, so get ready to weather the storm whenever and no matter how hard it hits.
If there’s no place for a sturdy raincoat and waterproof boots in your rucksack, throw something out. Catching bad flu in a foreign land is something you don’t want to experience, so make sure your head and feet are protected against the harshest weather conditions.
4. Travel Adapters
Don’t forget about travel adapters.
You’ll be recharging your laptop and smartphone more often than back home because you’ll be using them all the time. Don’t forget that different countries have different standards for power plugs. You’ll need a special travel adapter to match the plugs in different countries.
5. Data Backup
Consider a good cloud storage solution, especially if you’ll be working as a photographer (as many digital nomads do). Though USB flash drives and external hard discs can come in handy too, they can always get broken or stolen, causing you to lose all your files when you need them most.
6. Mobile Hotspot
Don’t presume that the internet coverage is as good in eastern countries as it as back in the West. In fact, some small cities in Asia don’t have WiFi at all, which means that you’ll need to rely on your mobile hotspot during your stay there. Do your research and plan your WiFi route in advance.
Whatever you do, don’t do anything important via public WiFi.
Public networks are never encrypted, and virtually anyone can see what you’re doing online. Never use them for money transactions or to exchange confidential information and private documents with other people. Never access social media and banking accounts via public WiFi.
Staying away from any website that requires your credentials would be a smart thing.
7. VPN Software
Travelers have one effective solution against cybercrime – VPN technology.
A VPN (Virtual Private Network) will keep your online whereabouts anonymous by masking your IP address and data traffic. Using a reliable one is crucial not only in situations when you need to share a network with strangers but also for unlocking geo-restricted online content. For instance, Google and Facebook are banned from China.
Happy travels and stay safe!