Alex Ledsom, Senior Contributor
July 20, 2020
Digital nomads used to be a niche in the travel market, posting enviable photos on Instagram of a sumptuous working life lived outside of an office. Since Covid-19, the number of people who can work from anywhere has increased and now so called ‘work tourism’ is a far bigger market. As a means of kickstarting economies, countries such as Barbados and Estonia are now luring these people, offering working visas as well as travel opportunities to neighbouring countries.
Still niche, but getting bigger
After three or four months of lockdown, many people are starting to see the new reality; even if they don’t work for themselves, many more can now work from anywhere to do their jobs.
And now entire countries are opening their doors. The Telegraph reported that Estonia is allowing anyone to come live and work in the country for up to a year, plus allowing 90 days of travel across Schengen countries.
Applicants must prove that they earn a good living; showing evidence that they are earn at least $3,988 (€3,504) a month. They must also be employed or paid by overseas companies and not be tied to one location.
An Estonian nomad visa costs $100 to $125 depending on length of stay and forms should be submitted at the nearest embassy.
Barbados is also offering the chance for one year of remote working. Prime minister Mia Amor Mottley, as reported in The Telegraph , announced a new scheme to boost the economy, by encouraging people to benefit from the ‘Barbados Welcome Stamp’ to stay in the country and work digitally. The visa allows movement back and forth, dependant obviously on Covid-19 border restrictions.
Many companies will also fill the void
As much as WeWork was hyped by the market for being the latest unicorn before its downfall last year, outside of larger metropolitan areas and its target audience, it isn’t a household name. And it isn’t yet clear if WeWork–and other companies which provide office space for people without an office–will be the winners of post-pandemic working life.
Maybe people will turn to more nomadic solutions. Coboat, for instance, offers round the world sailing trips for freelancers, where you pay what you can afford. They call themselves, the “remote workation for adventurous entrepreneurs”.
By Alex Ledsom, Senior Contributor
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