Best Countries For Americans To Live And Work In As Digital Nomads

The digital nomad movement is accelerating. Indeed, the number of people seeking a digital nomad lifestyle tripled over 3 years and is projected to reach 1 billion by 2035. In 2021 over 15 million Americans became digital nomads, with an average age of 32. Mostly made up of Milenials, Gen Xs and Gen Ys, some 24 million additional Americans are reporting they plan to become digital nomads in the next 2 to 3 years.

Main Attractions Regarding These Immigration Visas

Among the main attractions of the nomad lifestyle are flexibility, increase in wages, freedom, and the ability to work anywhere. Nomads report they are more productive because they face fewer interruptions, less involvement in office politics, environments are quieter and they can invest more focused time in their work. It is interesting that despite these attractions, over 65 percent of digital nomads are actually just traditional employees working remotely, but abroad or overseas. With 45 countries already offering digital nomad visas, more are being added to the list every month. When choosing a destination, the most important criterion appears to be reliable WiFi. Then there are the traditional considerations such as cost of living or visa requirements.

Key Considerations In Listing The Best Countries

There are many articles on the internet setting out the list of top spots for digital nomad visas. For example, Bloomberg recently listed ‘the hottest destinations.’ The cost of visas and the time to process them were among their main criteria. Insider rolled out a listing of digital nomad destinations based on the lowest monthly income requirements to qualify for a visa. Sifted published a list of European countries offering digital nomad visas commenting on things like taxation and length of stays as well. These listings are good so far as they go. But, the last few years have raised two real concerns that these listings have not really considered. The two things that truly matter are health and safety, especially for females which make up 70% of digital nomads.

Factoring In Health And Safety, a head-hunting organization that matches vetted software developers with employers searching for skilled workers, actually did research to find out which countries are the healthiest and safest for digital nomads. They analyzed data from the Global Health Security Index (GHI), which measures the capacity of countries to prepare for epidemics and pandemics, and the Global Peace Index (GPI) which indicates the degree of peace that exists in countries and found the top six healthiest and safest countries offering digital nomad visas. They are:

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  • Australia. Ranking #2 in the GHI and #27 in GPI. It is famous for its koalas, kangaroos, and cube-shaped wombat poo.
  • New Zealand. #13 in the GHI and #2 in GPI. It is famous for its picturesque filming location of the ‘Hobbit’ film series.
  • Portugal. #33 in the GHI and #6 in GPI. Portugal can offer the biggest waves to surf and some fine pasteis de nata to snack on afterward.
  • Germany. #8 in the GHI and #16 in GPI. It offers 1,500 different types of beer and 1,000 types of sausages – and there is still time to move there before Octoberfest!
  • Hungary. Ranking #34 in the GHI and #13 in GPI. It is the motherland of the Rubik’s cube – something to keep a digital nomad busy between business calls.
  • Norway. #19 in the GHI and #17 in GPI. It is also one of the happiest countries in the world, according to The World Happiness Report.

Their full report can be found here

In addition to these countries, there are three countries that are in the process of preparing to launch digital nomad visas. They are Italy, Latvia and Bali.

Stay Tuned To Local Conditions

In view of the bright future of digital nomad visas, it would be wise to stay tuned to developments in this field. Before embarking to any of the countries listed, it would also be wise to check on the current conditions there since things can change at any time.