Choosing your preferred digital nomad workplace is one of the best parts of the remote work nomad lifestyle.
The ideal workplace for you is going to vary. Whether you are a short or long term digital nomad, you’ll need to consider your budget, personality, and ability to focus.
Let’s take a look at the four most common types of digital nomad workplaces.
1. Make Your Digital Nomad Workplace Anywhere
Just as Instagram promises, your digital nomad workplace can often be anyplace you decide it should be.
Need to get work done while on a bus or at the airport? You’ll find it a necessity at times. Living and traveling in a van? Your office can be your vehicle. Want to pose with your laptop on the beach? Go for it.
If you’re lucky enough to be in a city that offers open WiFi, you could even work from the park. Otherwise, you’ll need to make sure you have cheap and reliable data to turn your phone into a hotspot.
You’ll Enjoy Making Your Digital Nomad Workplace from Anyplace If:
- You’re more introverted or prefer to work alone.
- You’re able to focus while in a variety of – often novel – environments.
- You enjoy the freedom and adventure of continually finding and working in new locations.
- You despise traditional work environments and the associated commute.
There Can Be Some Downsides to Working from Anywhere
Despite what marketers and social media want you to believe, it turns out that laptops don’t like the sun and sand on beaches. Even if you’re not on the beach, the sun’s glare can make it difficult to see your computer screen unless your display is very bright.
If routine and consistency help you focus on your remote work, setting up an office in new locations will hurt your productivity. This option can also become expensive if you can’t find free WiFi, do the bulk of your work online, and need to pay for data.
Background noise can make it difficult to focus and communicate on phone calls. Fortunately, noise-canceling software like Krisp solves this challenge.
2. Do Your Remote Work from Your Apartment, Airbnb, Hotel, or Hostel
Another typical digital nomad workplace is right from your lodging.
Hate having to commute to get work done? No problem – you live in your office. Wake up, roll over, grab your laptop, and you’re ready to go.
Have a flexible work schedule and get your work done in intermittent spurts of productivity? It’s easy to get a few hours of work done, take a break, and finish later when you work from your lodging.
It’s easy to have a time efficient schedule. Grabbing some food or going for a walk in is as easy as closing your laptop and taking a quick break.
Doing Remote Work from Your Lodging Is an Excellent Option If You:
- Don’t mind working in isolation.
- Need to maximize your digital nomad salary and save every penny. The money you pay for your lodging doubles as your digital nomad workspace.
- Can be sure the WiFi in your lodging is reliable enough to get work done.
- Enjoy taking breaks and doing work in short chunks throughout the day.
There Are Couple of Problems with Working from Your Lodging
It’s hard to maintain a work-life separation when you work from the same room you sleep and live in. Loneliness is also a common issue. It’s not uncommon to go the entire day without seeing another person or experiencing anything new.
In a hotel or hostel, you could get out of your room and work from the lobby. Still, the background noise and lack of available power outlets can sometimes make this difficult.
3. Make Cafes or Coffeeshops Your Workplace
Even if you work from your lodging most days, you can still work from cafes when you want to get out.
Most cafes have reliable WiFi. When it’s fast enough, this saves you money on your data or provides an alternative when your lodging doesn’t have adequate WiFi.
Cafes are all about food and beverages, so there are always refreshments available as you work. Even though you may not spend much time interacting with others, cafes can also ease the sense of loneliness since other people are around you.
There’s an attractive potential benefit to using a cafe as your digital nomad workplace. Scientific studies have even shown that productivity often goes up when working in public places. This might be because we work more efficiently when we feel that others are watching us work – even though nobody in a cafe is probably watching you type.
You’ll Enjoy Working from Cafes If You:
- Enjoy having people around, but still prefer to focus on your work.
- Have a penchant for sampling food and drinks.
- Work best by concentrating for several hours at a time during regular work hours.
- Have some money to spend, but still prefer to save money over a co-working space.
You Might Not Enjoy These Aspects of Working from Cafes
Depending on your location, WiFi in cafes can be unreliable. You’re taking a risk since their priority is food service, not providing you with a working space.
Also, available outlets can also be challenging to find. There are few things more frustrating than taking time out of your day to go to the cafe, then having to leave because you can’t charge your laptop.
Constant background chatter and sound can also make calls difficult. You can get around this by using software like Krisp to eliminate background noise.
Most cafes don’t want you to make them your digital nomad workplace unless you are a paying customer. If you’re planning on working for twelve hours, that can become a lot of money spent on coffee – along with some severe jitters. You’re also restricted to the cafe’s hours, so say goodbye to spontaneous 4 AM work sessions.
Some cafes are also more focused on a restaurant experience than being a lounge space. You often won’t know until you arrive.
4. Co-working and Shared Office Spaces Can Make Great Digital Nomad Workplaces
A co-working space or shared office can provide a much more professional place to do your remote work. Most popular digital nomad cities have at least several co-working spaces.
Co-working spaces are often less formal and usually have a more trendy aesthetic. You’ll often find a digital nomad community, which makes them a better choice if you want to network and socialize. Most co-working spaces also have private rooms available for a higher fee.
You could also try finding a shared office space. You’ll be essentially subletting an office inside another business’s office space. You can expect a typical office environment here.
Desks, chairs, and decent WiFi are guaranteed by any decent co-working or shared office space. Both options also often include free coffee, snacks, and other amenities.
Co-working or Shared Office Spaces Are Great for You If:
- You’re more extroverted and prefer to socialize with others during the workday rather than being alone.
- You need to guarantee consistent, reliable internet.
- You work during more traditional business hours, rather than waking up at 2 AM to spend a few hours on work.
- You have extra money to spend, and don’t need to live on the smallest possible budget.
These Workplaces Aren’t All Flowers and Sunshine for Everyone
In a way, you’re still visiting an office. Some would say this goes against the reason they went to that digital nomad destination.
If you’re more introverted or prefer to focus while in a quiet environment, the social aspects will likely frustrate you. The interruptions and conversations will distract you from your work and reduce your productivity.
There will also be some commute, which takes time away from some other remote work and digital nomad activities you could be doing. This commute makes it hard to be productive if you like to work in chunks throughout the day. You’re also confined to working during the co-working space’s open hours.
Which Style of Digital Nomad Workplace Is Best for You?
Are you on a budget, introverted or extroverted, on a tight budget, or loathe a traditional work schedule? Give these options a try and see which digital nomad workplace is the best fit for you.