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Location Independence: Choosing the Best Countries for Digital Nomads - Cover

Location Independence: Choosing the Best Countries for Digital Nomads

The digital nomad lifestyle lets you work remotely while living or basing yourself in different countries. This can, no doubt, be an exciting adventure. But to make it work, you need to pick the right countries.

What makes a place perfect for digital nomads? This guide lists some of the best countries for digital nomads and also shares what to consider when choosing.

If you’re curious about trying out the digital nomad lifestyle and shaking up your work routine, we’ve also got some handy tips to help you get started.

Check them out here.

Best Countries for Digital Nomads

1. Spain

Old town Calp Spain
Spain has always been a dream destination for many, and now, with the introduction of the digital nomad visa, moving here is more feasible than ever.

This southwestern European country is incredibly diverse. Here, you’ll find everything from majestic mountains to beautiful beaches and vibrant cities. With a vast range of towns and islands to explore, you’ll never tire of living and working remotely in Spain.

Depending on where you choose to settle, Spain can be affordable, but costs can quickly add up if you’re not careful. Your monthly expenses will largely depend on your chosen lifestyle.

Top Digital Nomad Spots in Spain

  • Lanzarote, Canary Islands: A serene island with volcanic landscapes and tranquil beaches, perfect for remote work.
  • La Orotava, Tenerife: A picturesque town known for colonial architecture and stunning views of Mount Teide, ideal for digital nomads seeking inspiration.
  • Las Palmas: The vibrant capital of Gran Canaria, boasting beautiful beaches and a lively atmosphere, ideal for remote work and leisure.
  • Barcelona: The city by the beach that everyone loves, with a bustling atmosphere but still close to beautiful nature.

2. Mexico

Tulum - Mexico
Mexico has a lot to offer digital nomads, thanks to its varied scenery and awesome weather year-round. Whether you prefer big cities or quiet beach towns, you’re sure to find something that suits your taste in Mexico.

As a digital nomad, you want places that are both affordable and exciting, and Mexico ticks both boxes. With its vibrant cities, historical towns, and beach spots, you’ll hardly run out of things to see and do, and all that without spending too much.

No doubt, Mexico isn’t the cheapest place around. Still, it’s a good deal, especially if you’re earning in pounds, euros, or dollars. And the weather is pretty nice too — no harsh winters, just lots of sunny days to enjoy.

Top Digital Nomad Spots in Mexico

  • Puerto Escondido: A chill beach town known for surfing and its relaxed vibe.
  • Troncones: A peaceful beach getaway with stunning scenery.
  • Playa del Carmen: A resort town popular for its white sand beaches, turquoise waters, and vibrant downtown area.

3. Indonesia

The Lawn - Bali
When digital nomads think of Indonesia, Bali is often the first destination that comes to mind —and that’s not surprising considering its stunning landscapes.

Bali’s thriving digital nomad community, low cost of living, and good internet speed make it an ideal destination. Although plans for the country’s digital nomad visa are in the works, other visa options exist for remote workers eager to work in Indonesia.

The Visa On Arrival allows a 30-day stay and can be extendable once, while the B211A Visa offers 60-day stays, extendable twice.

Also, non-residents are taxed only on Indonesian-sourced income, meaning you can save a significant amount in Indonesia if you earn a foreign income.

Top Digital Nomad Spots in Indonesia

  • Jakarta: Indonesia’s capital city, known for its dynamic energy, diverse culinary scene, and modern amenities.
  • Canggu: A laid-back coastal village in Bali, famous for its surf breaks, hip cafes, and coworking spaces.

4. Argentina

Mar del Plata - Argentina
There’s a reason it seems tons of digital nomads are eyeing Buenos Aires: In Argentina’s capital, you’ll get the comforts of Europe at a fraction of the price!

Of course, it is best to live here while earning in more stable currencies like euros, dollars, or pounds rather than in pesos, considering the country’s fluctuating economy.

In 2022, the Argentine government introduced a digital nomad visa, allowing foreigners to stay legally for up to 180 days, with the possibility of extending for another 180.

If you’re eyeing a long-term stay, explore the options for long-term visa permits offered by the Argentine Immigration Office.

Keep in mind, though, that you won’t be able to register legally in Argentina for local services like health insurance. Your best bet would be to use travel insurance providers like SafetyWing.

Top Digital Nomad Spots in Argentina

While Buenos Aires remains a top draw for many, here are other spots you might want to consider settling in:

  • Chapadmalal: A serene coastal town known for its beautiful beaches and relaxed atmosphere.
  • Cordoba: A vibrant city renowned for its rich culture, historic architecture, and thriving arts scene.
  • Rosario: A bustling metropolis located along the Paraná River, boasting lively street markets, cultural events, and vibrant nightlife.

5. Portugal

Porto - Portugal
The charming cities and laid-back coastal towns of Portugal are hard to resist, especially if you’re interested in settling in a place that’s perfect for work and leisure.

Little wonder many young artists and entrepreneurs flock to the cozy bars and hilly streets of Lisbon, Portugal’s capital city, often dubbed the Paris of this century.

Compared to many European countries, the cost of living in Portugal is considerably low. Plus, the sunny weather and stunning beaches are inviting.

With solid internet infrastructure and the Portugal digital nomad visa for non-EU remote workers and freelancers, Portugal is definitely one of the best countries for digital nomads.

Its tax-friendly policies, including the non-habitual tax residency program, make it even more appealing for those eyeing long-term stays.

Top Digital Nomad Spots in Portugal

  • Lisbon: The lively capital city, known for its lively culture and beautiful beach spots like Costa da Caparica.
  • Azores: A breathtaking archipelago in the Atlantic Ocean, featuring volcanic landscapes and a peaceful atmosphere.
  • Peniche: A picturesque coastal town famous for its world-class surfing spots and relaxed vibe.

What to Consider When Selecting a Digital Nomad Destination

googling for the best digital nomad destination
While some places may seem ideal for remote work with their beautiful beaches or cozy cafes, the reality can be quite different. There’s far more to having an awesome digital nomad experience than just a good internet connection or nice scenery.

Here are some really important factors to consider when choosing the best countries for digital nomads:

Safety and Security

Putting safety first is non-negotiable. It’s important to prioritize destinations with a stable political environment and low crime rates. Research safety precautions, available healthcare facilities, and emergency services in the area.

No matter how tempting the surroundings are or how appealing the perks are, you want to make sure you choose a secure environment to live and work. When selecting destinations, safety is a fundamental consideration to never compromise on.

Visa Policies

When picking a destination for remote work, it's important to consider the visa regulations of each country. It is usually best to opt for countries with more flexible visa policies, as this can simplify the process for both visitors and the host nation.

If you plan to stay somewhere for a longer time, you should consider countries offering digital nomad visas. They make it easier for remote workers to live and work there for an extended time.

Tax Rules

The idea of working remotely from certain countries might sound good until you realize how much tax you could end up paying. Your best bet?

Choose a destination with no or low taxes. Choosing a country with friendly tax rules means you can focus on your work without stressing about paying a lot in taxes.

Vibrant Digital Nomad Hub

Canggu - Digital nomad community
No doubt, discovering new environments and cultures as a remote worker can be thrilling, but it can also feel isolating at times.

This is why it’s important to look out for countries with vibrant digital nomad communities where you can connect with like-minded individuals by sharing coworking or coliving spaces.

Finding a stunning setting for work is great, but it gets better when you can work alongside people who share your nomadic lifestyle.

At Coworksurf you'll easily find this type of community at surf spots around the world.

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