For many people, the pandemic has made the dream of becoming a digital nomad a reality. This way of life gives them the freedom to live and work wherever they want, as well as traveling the world. But taking the first few steps like knowing what to bring may not be the most pleasant experience. We’ve put together a checklist of what you’ll need to pack before starting your new chapter as a digital nomad.
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The backpack is the best option for traveling throughout the world. When it comes to keeping your bag organized and as light as possible, simple and functional goods are the way to go. Of course, a suitcase is a choice. At the end of the day, it all comes down to how you want to spend your travel time and where you want to go. But it’s worth noting that you might have a headache from bringing a suitcase especially to more remote places without decent roads. Other than that, a durable laptop backpack is an absolute must-have for digital nomads. That way, you can keep your belongings separate since all your work gears are in another bag. Look for a backpack that has many compartments to keep your belongings organized and accessible.
You won’t get very far without essential paperwork. What can be done is take photos of it and save them somewhere you can retrieve them at any time, such as your iCloud or Google Drive. In case of an emergency, it’s also a good idea to store physical and digital copies somewhere else. Other than that, consider sending digital copies of your documents to people you know and trust. They can then mail them to you from afar if you require them.
Bring a couple of shirts that are light, comfortable, and long-lasting. Take some neutral colors like black, navy, or grey since they’re easier to conceal stains with and they’re easier to match. Tank shirts are also a must-have in hotter areas. In addition to that, bring a sweatshirt, cardigans or long-sleeve t-shirts with you. They are great for layering when the weather becomes cold. Layers provide you with more alternatives for different weather conditions and make it easier to blend them. The idea is to bring only what you need.
Pack a pair of pants that you can wear for a range of activities, such as hiking or visiting the beach. Athletic pants are a great addition too to your digital nomad wardrobe. Apart from being sturdy and comfy, these pants are also available in smaller sizes and have a more aesthetic look. A pair of long pants would be just as right as a pair of shorts for regular wear. Both may be lacking in style, but they may be worn to a variety of occasions and are also comfortable to wear. But don’t bring too many because you can always go to the nearby shopping mall and buy more.
It should be known that you won’t be able to bring a large fluffy towel with you. But a quick-dry towel might suffice. It’s usually compact, dries rapidly, and is without a doubt the greatest choice. It’s important to bring your towel because your accommodations may not provide one. You’ll also need a towel in addition to a bathing suit if you’re going to the beach, lakes, or pools.
Shoes are incredibly tricky to pack. Limit your footwear options to a pair of sneakers or sandals and a pair of flip-flops. You can always buy new shoes while you’re in your new city if you need them. So, when you’re in a place where you don’t want to go barefoot, you can just slip on your most basic, water-resistant flip-flops.
It’s helpful to have a tiny pouch to keep all of your toiletries together. Make sure you have your razor, blades, toothbrush, toothpaste, sunscreen, and any other items you’ll need to maintain your hygiene. Check to see whether some of these products are available where you’ll be staying. Some furnished flats or apartments prepare toiletries, so you may be able to skip packing them.
It’s not a bad idea to keep a couple of tablets on hand. You should bring your allergy medications with you if you have them. Aside from that, you must experience travel cuisine, and those delicious dishes with strong spices may cause an upset stomach if your stomach is not used to it. It’s a good idea to bring a couple of digestion pills with you. If you need to bring a large amount of medication or special injections, get a doctor’s certificate in case airport security questions you.
The most essential piece of equipment you’ll need is a laptop. As the gateway to the rest of the world, it’s your only way to work and earn money. When deciding which laptop to carry, consider both weight and performance. If possible, opt for an Ultrabook
Of course, you need a smartphone. There are many choices available but it all depends on what you intend to do for business. Remember to purchase a SIM card when you travel to a new country, especially if you plan to stay there for a long time. Aside from using it as a travel camera, the smartphone can be used as a hotspot which gives you the advantage when you’re in an area where there is no Wi-Fi.
Headphones are essential for all those times when you’ll have to work in distracting surroundings. When you’re attempting to work from a crowded airport or café, in-ear headphones are a game-changer. Experienced digital nomads usually bring a backup set of headphones with them when they travel to guarantee that the obstacles of being on the road don’t interrupt their job. A pair of wired headphones is a smart choice since it eliminates the need to worry about connectivity or charging. They’re also fantastic for in-flight entertainment on flights and trains.
12. Universal Adapter
The universal adapter ensures that you remain connected no matter where you are in the world. When you’re working and living abroad, you’ll need this every time you plug in your smartphone, laptop, or any other electrical device. Make sure you do your research on where you’re going to guarantee you get the proper one. Universal travel adaptors are available in most cities, but it’s always better to be prepared.
13. Power Bank
With a mobile power bank, you can keep your electronic devices charged wherever you are. Even if your phone’s battery runs out, you can still work or listen to music while driving. There are several options for cell phone power banks, but digital nomads will find a laptop power bank to be very useful. This will allow you to charge larger devices, such as laptops and tablets, while also providing additional power to your smaller devices. A lipstick-sized portable charger is ideal too as it will fit effortlessly into your backpack.
14. Portable Hard drive
As a digital nomad, your files are the most critical part of your job, so it would be better to include these little gadgets on your packing list. With a portable hard drive, you can keep all of your work files safe. If your laptop is stolen and your data isn’t backed up to the cloud, you can at the very least keep all of your data locally and transfer it over in the event of a disaster.
15. Electronics Organizer
When you live out of a backpack, it’s easy to misplace stuff. Searching through your backpack for your headphones or the cable you need to plug things in can be distracting. An electronics organizer can help you stay organized and focused, so you can set up your mobile office anywhere you choose.
16. Packing cubes
Keeping your belongings and clothing organized can make it much easier to locate anything in your bag as you travel from place to place. For digital nomads who travel frequently, packing cubes will be a lifesaver. Whether you’re going on a weekend trip or moving to somewhere new, packing cubes will help you stay organized and avoid overpacking. There are many different types of packing cubes, and the ideal packing cubes can change depending on where you’re going and what you’re doing.
Last but not least, get yourself a padlock especially if you plan on living in hostels or sharing a room with strangers. As tempting as it is to ignore the risk of theft, you’re likely to have a lot of important items with you that need to be protected. Buy a padlock to protect your belongings even when you need to move away from them for a moment. Most good hostels include lockers, but not all of them have locks, so you’ll have to bring your own. A padlock takes up little room in your bag and protects your valuables safe while you’re out exploring the area.