Girl under palm trees in bali

13 Best Cities for Digital Nomads (2019)

Screw the 9-5 rat race

Grab your laptop and work remotely as you live in exotic, affordable cities with fast wifi, incredible food, and an affordable cost of living.

#13 – Sofia, Bulgaria

Sofia, Bulgaria apartment

 

For those Digital Nomads who are looking for a healthy balance of work and travel, Sofia is the perfect spot to call home. Take a bus to Greece, hop on a train to Turkey, jump on a quick flight to Italy – there are so many cool destinations nearby. AND the fact that Bulgaria has one of the fastest internet connections in the world certainly doesn’t hurt. 

Average Rent in Sofia: $400 USD / Month

Best Coworking Space: Puzl CowOrKing

 

#12 – Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

PUERTO VALLARTA, MEXICO

 

Most western passports get you a 6-month Visa for Mexico, no questions asked. Grab your laptop, pack your suitcase, and move to Puerto Vallarta- a small beach town with plenty of places to eat, party, and work. Great for solo Digital Nomads or young couples who enjoy working hard during the day and partying at night. There are plenty of places to work here, including a Starbucks (*gasp*)!

Average Rent in Puerto Vallarta: $250 USD / Month

Best Coworking Space: Vallarta Cowork

 

#11 – Taipei, Taiwan

 

A city unlike any other, the laptop lifestyle is so enjoyable in Taipei. With a seamlessly organized bus and Skytrain system, a relatively non-existent crime rate, an abundance of high-speed internet spaces for work, and an overflow of night markets with cheap & delicious food…it’s not long until Taipei becomes the new hot spot for Digital Nomads. 

Average Rent in Taipei: $350 USD / Month

Best Coworking Space: Kafnu

 

#10 – Danang, Vietnam

Danang, Vietnam Street Food

 

A beach town full of cafes and street food; it’s easy to live a productive yet laid back lifestyle in Danang. Join the fast-growing Digital Nomad community in Danang where you collaborate, cowork, and attend small conferences to grow your business. There’s always some Digital Nomad meet up happening. Get amongst it to get your wheels spinning.

Average Rent in Danag: $450 per month

Best Coworking Space: DNC

 

#9 – Prague, Czech Republic

 

Prague is famous for its rich history and wild nightlife. Get inspired on during your “work days” and let loose on your days off. Cost of living is a bit more expensive than some of the other Digital Nomad destinations on this list, but you get what you pay for with gorgeous architecture, western standards of living, and an open-minded culture.

Average Rent in Prague: $700

Best Coworking Space: Locus Workspace

 

 

#8 – Plovdiv, Bulgaria

 

One of the oldest cities in the world has some of the best Wifi on the planet! Cobblestone streets and Roman ruins next to craft beer houses and H&M – Plovdiv offers the best of both worlds for Digital Nomads. Here, it’s easy to make friends with locals and expats while getting into a comfortable work routine. Plovdiv is an awesome choice for someone looking to create a life of their own.

Average Rent in Plovdiv: $240

Best Coworking Space: Cat and Mouse Co-working Space

 

#7 – Hanoi, Vietnam

 

Embrace the motorbike culture in Hanoi as you jump on the back of a motorbike taxi to head to your favorite coffee shop – laptop and earbuds in tow. Digital Nomads can work with a lake view one day and tuck themselves in a cozy coffee nook the next. Hanoi is such an easy city to get around, that exploring with your laptop is half the fun.

Average Rent in Hanoi: $300 USD / Month

Best Coworking Space: Toong Coworking Space

 

#6 – Medellin, Colombia

Medellin, Colombia at night

 

Now that Pablo Escobar & Co. are gone, Medellin has become a safe and comfortable city for locals and expats. Female friendly, LGBT safe, and open to racial diversity- Medellin has the potential to become the ultimate melting pot of digital nomads in South America.

Average Rent in Medellin: $400 USD/ Month

Best Coworking Space: La Casa Redonda Coworking Space

 

 

#5 – Bangkok, Thailand

Gold Buddha in Thailand, Bangkok

 

Move into a brand-new condo building with a gorgeous pool, private gym, library working space, and most likely a 7/11 attached for those mid-workday snacks, starting at $300 a month in Bangkok. You can get all of this plus super-fast wifi all while being smack dab in the thick of markets, street food, shopping, and expat nightlife.

Average Rent in Bangkok: $280 USD/ Month

Best Coworking Space: DraftBoard

 

#4 – Kiev, Ukraine

 

Hunker down in Kiev and get some serious work done. When you want to get off the expat path and away from the trendy coworking spaces, Kiev is a fabulous option with fast wifi, a decent level of English speaking locals, and cheap cost of living! Your biggest expenses will be rent- after that, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at the cost of food, transportation, and entertainment.

Average Rent in Kiev: $475

Best Coworking Space: Chasopys Creative Space

 

#3 – Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

 

Eat your way through the “work day” in Ho Chi Minh City – a Digital Nomad destination that gives your cheap street food options everywhere you turn. And with super relaxed visa restrictions, you can theoretically stay as long as you’d like – with a few border runs in-between.

Average Rent in Ho Chi Minh City: $300 USD/month

Best Coworking Space: The Hive Saigon

 

#2 – Chiang Mai, Thailand

 

Digital Nomad Paradise for beginners! If you’re just starting out or experimenting with the ‘Digital Nomad’ lifestyle, you’ll be in great company in Chiang Mai. This small city has a welcoming expat community, is easy to navigate on foot, has never-ending options for cheap food (both Thai and international), and everything is in English.

Average Rent in Chiang Mai: $200 USD/month

Best Coworking Space: Punspace Wiang Kaew

 

#1 – Bali, Indonesia

 

Come to Bali for one of the best coworking spaces in the world- Dojo in the popular beach town of Canggu- and stay for the awesome international community full of expats either working remotely, teaching English, or fully retired. Oh, and the lush tropical jungle plus stunning beaches don’t hurt either.

Average Rent in Bali: $340 USD / Month

Best Coworking Space: Dojo in Canggu

 


Lower your cost of living. Pocket more money. Meet people who think like you.

Cuz’ fuck it. Life is short.

The ULTIMATE Prep & Packing List for Travelers

There’s a difference between someone who goes on vacation and someone who travels. 

This list is for the latter. 

*This is a long one. Read this whole thing and now, you essentially travel like me. 

 

Here is every gadget, credit card, and habit that I carry with me when I travel.

I save money.

 I avoid problems.

I gain time.

All because I pack and prep like the god damn pro traveler that I am.

Tick these items off your packing prep list, and you will have learned the lessons which took me nearly 10 years to master.


prep list


#1 – Check your Passport

AMERICAN PASSPORT

There are things about your passport that you don’t know!

First, make sure that you have more than 6 months validity on your passport. In other words, make sure your passport doesn’t expire in the next 6 months.

For example, if your trip begins on January 1st, 2020, your passport must be valid AT LEAST until July 1st, 2020. Countries reserve the right to put you right back on a plane to where you came from if your passport expires within 6 months.

Second, check how many pages you have left. Some countries (like Cambodia and Vietnam) don’t simply give you a stamp, they give you a gigantic sticker that takes up an entire page! If you’re running low on space, this could be an issue.

Oh, and make a couple copies of your passport to keep on hand. Black and white is fine. 

#2 – GET TRAVEL INSURANCE

I would never travel without travel insurance and neither should you.

1 week. 1 month. It doesn’t make a difference. You need to be covered for everything from Lost Baggage to Motorbike Accidents.

When traveling long-term, I use IMG Insurance as the plans are more economical for bigger trips and they provide extensive coverage with everything from hospital visits to flight cancelations. Customer service is quick to handle your claim and reimburse you!

For trips under 3-months, I use WorldNomads Travel Insurance as they offer the most straight-forward travel plans ever. Pick the Standard Plan for basic travel coverage/flight delay protection or the Explorer Plan for extreme adventures like Kayaking and Rock-climbing. These plans include massive accident coverage from $100,000 to $1,000,000 – plus, evacuation coverage if you need to be helicoptered off a mountain somewhere.  

#3 – update your bank cards and credit cards

As a traveler, there are two money rules to live by:

  • Don’t buy flights and hotels with cash
  • Make sure your debit card is compatible with foreign ATMS.

If you’re cool with traveling with your weak-ass Visa debit card, skip to listicle #4. If you want to save money and rack up travel points for free flights, I’ll break down my Bank Card Trifecta now…

I travel with 3 cards in my wallet at all times: 1 amazing debit card and 2 travel credit cards.

              1. Charles Schwab Debit Card – Best for International ATM Withdrawals
        1. Chase Sapphire Preferred – 2x points when used on flights, hotels, Uber, AirBnb, and Restaurants + Trip Cancelation Coverage (weather, sickness and other causes)
        2. American Express Platinum – The Most Powerful Travel Credit Card Ever + Airport Lounge Global Access with Priority Pass & 5x points on flights and hotels.

For more info (and to learn how to fly Business Class for free) check out The Best Travel Credit Cards and Travel Debit Cards.

#4 – Medications & Travel Vaccinations

No, you cannot bring your Adderall to Thailand or Indonesia. Not even with a prescription.

No, you do not need to start taking Malaria medication before you visit Southeast Asia.

And yes, you can bring Tylenol and motion sickness pills – but you can also buy them inside stores all over Southeast Asia.

Now, what about vaccinations?

Before you go anywhere, make sure you’re up to date on all the basic vaccinations like Tetanus, Hepatitis A & B, and your MMR vaccine.

Just like shopping for a travel insurance plan, your vaccinations and medications will depend on which destination you’re visiting.

The CDC Website…and your doctor who just googled the CDC website before your visit…might recommend some whacky vaccines aimed to cover people working on Pig Farms and teaching English by candlelight in remote jungle villages for 5 months. But that’s not you.

So, what about the CDC’s recommendations? Do you really need the Japanese Encephalitis vaccine? No. Do you need the Rabies series? Nah, not really. Am I a doctor? Absolutely fackin’ not, but I have lived in Asia for a very long time and have never heard of any travelers contracting rabies or Japanese Encephalitis.

Tip: Skip the high price of vaccinations at home and get your vaccinations at an international hospital in Asia for a fraction of the price.

#5 – Download this traveling organizing app

The most useful travel app ever is called TripIt. It’s an app that organizes all of your travel reservations into one clean timeline that you can access both  online and offline.

You simply forward your confirmation emails (hotels, flights, tours) to Plans@Tripit.com (once you’ve registered) and your itinerary is immediately organized to the app on your phone.

Need to pull up the directions to your hotel? The link is in your app. Need the confirmation number for your airline reservation? It’s in your app. Need the local phone number of the AirBnb you’ve booked? Just click the number in the app.

Game Changer.

Packing list


#1 – The best travel backpack ever

You and your travel backpack will develop an intimate bond. You will sleep with your backpack, snuggle your backpack, and you might eventually name your backpack. You need to love your travel backpack!

After 9 years of backpacking and nearly $1,000 spent on testing out 5 high-quality travel backpacks, I have finally settled on a favorite: The Farpoint 40 Liter.

This backpack is everything:

  • Compact carry-on bag perfect for the overhead bin
  • Comfortable fit for long days of carry
  • Front Open zip panel for organization
  • Versatile and secure pockets that can fit big items like Nike shoes!
  • Duo-Carry Function: carry as a backpack or a duffle bag
  • Perfect size for a long-trip!

#2 – Anti-theft purse

It’s not just the locals you’ve got to watch for, it’s also other travelers. Pick-pocketers prey on girls who have their guard down at parties, on buses, and in large crowds.

So, here is what you need to look for when buying your travel purse:

  • Zippers, not magnet or Velcro straps
  • Across-the-shoulder carry
  • Thick straps that are hard to break
  • Classic design that you’ll actually want to wear the whole trip

For a day purse that can carry your essentials plus snacks and a sweater, the Travelon Anti-Theft Heritage Bag is the best.

For a “Just my money and keys” bag that you’ll want to wear out on the town, Travelon Women’s Anti-Theft Heritage Small Crossbody Bag is it.

#3 – Adapters & Converters

Adapters and converters are not the same thing.

Adapters only help your plug fit the wall socket. The wall plugs at home may be rectangles, but in Bali they are circles. You need adapters for things like phone chargers.

Converters fit the wall socket and convert the electric voltage. Try plugging your blow dryer into a socket with a higher voltage and POOF, you’ve just broken your blow dryer.

Electronics need an adapter. Hair tools need a converter.

#4 – A pen

Duh. But I bet you’ll forget to pack it!

Pack 5. Stick them everywhere.

#5 – PAck Light

The less things you have, the more free you are.

Save room for shopping. And if you are unsure on whether to bring those jeans, or that lotion- then you don’t need them.

Airlines typically have a weight limit per bag, which can get pretty pricey if you exceed it.

Sneaky Tip: put your heaviest items in your purse or laptop bag- airline personnel rarely weigh those. Then, redistribute your items after you go through security.

The best thing to do is buy a gadget that is both, like this International Power Adapter.


What about dresses? Socks? Makeup bags? Check out my travel store to see what I travel with!


Never underestimate the power of packing like a pro.

You dissolve problems and gain power. Yes, literal power in situations that otherwise might make you feel powerless.

Packing professionally can mean the difference between paying $60 extra because your carry-on is too heavy and being bumped up to Business Class on a 7-hour leg.

Both of these things happen to me on a regular basis depending on how well I do or do not pack before my trip.

Sign-up here and I’ll send you my Official Packing Checklist for Free.