In a constantly connected world, digital nomads, who work while traveling all around the globe, took the scene for a few years already in the industry of travels. During a pandemic period which is affecting thousands of people every day and forcing everybody to stay at home, we might ask ourselves what are the consequences on these people whose life is built on moving ceaselessly.
The forbidden fundamentals
What digital nomads’ life revolves around is now out of range because of the Covid. Their life is usually marked by continuous travels, taking planes, spending time in airports, and transports. Everything that now, we do not have the right to do any longer. The Coronavirus does not enable anyone to move no more. Moving around became the threat number one and the best manner to spread the virus. This first point engendered travel restrictions and a lot more besides… the border shutdowns. All digital nomads had to cancel their travel plans as there is no flight anymore.
On top of all of that, the Covid is setting off an unprecedented economic crisis. A lot of businesses are being shut down which makes it hard to find or maintain contracts and receive a regular income able to sustain this type of lifestyle. The situation is even more difficult for digital nomads who are self-employed and have it sometimes hard to keep finding clients.
The Covid has a huge impact on the whole population but mostly on digital nomads as it is transforming their whole way to live and proceed. This pandemic will impact the aerospace industry which will probably make it hard for them to go back to a « normal rhythm » and will probably reduce the chance to travel this much. Indeed, the « unnecessary movements » as they are often called will be most likely prohibited for more months.
For a lot of digital nomads or travelers in general, the main question is also to know whether to stay or to go back home. A lot of nomads don’t have a home to go back to as they left everything to create a life based on travel only. Would it worth it to go back to my country even if I do not have a specific place to stay? Or would it be better to stay where I am and wait for it all to pass? Some also did not want to go back to their family or start living again with their loved ones because they could potentially infect them and put them in a risky situation.
A turning point
The Covid impacts every single person in the world, every kind of industry, everybody’s habits but the digital nomad life which is entirely based on the fact to move and not be home has been one of the most affected by it.
The positive point that this situation let come out is the fact that remote jobs are all the rage. A lot of companies are now using teleworking to keep moving with their activity. Teachers are giving their classes online and Zoom has never been so used as nowadays. Will this situation help in the future to find more easily remote jobs and pursue the dream to be a digital nomad? Maybe.
One more positive point for digital nomads is that it is not as difficult for them to adapt to the situation due to a really important reason. Despite the traveling inconveniences, digital nomads are lucky to be able to keep up with their work because they are used to constantly work remotely. The lack of a regular office does not impact their way to usually proceed as digital nomads can adapt to any kind of atmosphere.
Although, what we can be sure of is that life after Covid and quarantine will never be the same. A lot of things have already changed and people will have to create new habits and learn how to live according to what is coming next. The industry of digital nomads will have to reinvent itself to survive as most of the working fields going through this current crisis.
"But yes there will be a solution to all of this"
There is no one right now that has a proper answer to give to “What is coming next ?”. This situation is so unique and new to everybody that the whole world will have to build a new type of lifestyle together, hand in hand. The only advice we give to any digital nomad reading that is to patiently wait and stay safe until the moment will be suitable to be back to traveling. This will not be forever. Yes, things will change. Yes, you are impacted. But yes there will be a solution to all of this. Let’s all used this situation to also be more conscious about how our way to live can impact the local communities we come across during each trip we take. How do we have a small-scale impact on the world in general ? The digital nomad is even more connected than any other person. Digitally but also socially to all the people he/she meets all along the way and that makes him/her even more responsible. Let’s all use this time efficiently by spreading love around and by staying positive.
The travel industry may face right now an unprecedented situation yet the world will need even more digital nomads to keep boosting the economy. It won't take long before it will be safe to travel again while respecting certain rules. Everybody has to keep in mind that this pandemic does not sign the end of the digital nomads' life. Most of the businesses can bounce back and the quarantine can even give to some an opportunity to work on their project and launch new activities. This whole situation will certainly bring bright new horizons and open the door to new concepts and ideas for digital nomads. As Brian Chesky, co-founder and CEO of Airbnb would say: "We are going to weather this storm".
- Soraya B. #SafeNomad Resident
13 May 2020
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