The earliest known usage of the term ‘digital nomad‘ goes back to 1997! Digital nomads are people who use the internet to work either from their homes or while travelling. Of late, the term evokes the picture of a carefree young person in their 20’s working on a computer in a scenic location… The picture certainly looks glorious but like all paths, it’s not a simple road to utopia. There are lots of challenges like finding work continuously, the insecurity of being in a new place, loneliness, lack of a schedule and maybe more! But it offers a freedom which has been unparalleled ever since humans structured work and the industrial economy got under way.
In the western societies where the uptake of technology has been predominant, there are more digital nomads but the trend is picking up everywhere and we, at WorkationX are proud to be at the forefront when it comes to the remote work culture in India. We’re a co-working space in a remote valley in the Himalayas and offer creators and digital nomads a beautiful, safe place with a reliable internet connection. In this post, we aim to put together resources that have come in handy during our travels and we encourage you all to share your resources so that we can add to the post and make it comprehensive. One thing to keep in mind is that we’re making this resource list keeping the Indian context in mind.
1. What’s already there
Tonnes of things, just search for ‘resources for digital nomads’ and a hundred lists will pop up and they’re all good. For instance, the same search took me to this site- Trusted House Sitters, a site that allows one to look for houses and farm houses across the world you can take care of. Then there is this mega post which has 245 resources and tools for digital nomads on the Hackernoon Community and the folks over at NeverEndingVoyage have a list of 60 resources. And ofcourse, there is Nomadlist, Nomastack, TooManyAdapters and much more… But now, we’ll try and list the resources that have come in handy during our travels and planning…
There are tonnes of sites to book places to stay but when the travel bug bites, open up a digital and physical map and see what calls out. Or maybe call a friend and ask if she has any recommendations. Once you have an idea of the place you’d like to go, look them up on www.booking.com or www.hostelworld.com, two of the best sites when looking for hostels and budget places to stay. Both the sites have a great listing and can help you find the place you’d like to visit. For finding out co-working spaces, CoWorker is an interesting platform to check out. While in India, the popular hostel chains are Zostel, GoStops, Youth Hostels, BackPacker Panda and Moustache. You should also check out the state government accommodation websites like the HPTDC site while in Himachal, KMVN/GMVN in Uttarakhand, etc.
3. Food & Beverages
One would ideally suggest websites which are listing portals and delivery services but we’d recommend to give that a second priority and give serendipity a chance. Once you’re at the location, ask for the places where locals hang out and try them out. Try to avoid ordering food and choose a place which has a kitchen so that you can cook or ask if their is a local tiffin service. Coming to the websites, Zomato and Swiggy are the popular apps for ordering food.
Well, if you’re a digital nomad and in remote parts of India, forget Uber, Ola and all such services. Travel back in time and figure out the local transport options. Buses, autos, cycles rule the roost when in India. Places like Goa, Pondicherry, Bir, Mcleodganj will have cycles and motorbikes on rent which can hired. If you’re in the city, Zoom Car is the most popular self-drive car rental service and for two wheelers, platforms like WheelStreet, Rentrip, etc are coming up.
5. Finding work
Well, probably the most important part, remote workers look for jobs remotely on the internet. And hence, job portals come in handy. Upwork, Freelancer, etc. have been sites one usually frequents but the nature of work is often very impersonal. If you’re visiting the place for a long time, see if you can reach out to business owners residing there and find out work. Other options which will probably earn less but more satisfying would working at a farm or a local cafe. For India, niche job portals like HasJob have some great work opportunities.
These are some of the sites we use regularly, what do you use? We’d love to hear from you on things we missed out and make this a resourceful compendium! Comment here or write to [email protected]