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A Guide for College Students Embracing the Digital Nomad Lifestyle

Charlie Fletcher

A Guide for College Students Embracing the Digital Nomad Lifestyle

A digital nomad is someone who works remotely and travels often. Their work doesn’t require them to report to an office or adhere to a strict schedule. Instead, they can work anywhere in the world, doing the job they love.

It’s no wonder this lifestyle is appealing more to college students. They can travel the world while studying and working abroad. That said, being a college student and a digital nomad is a challenge. It’s not like a vacation where all you have to worry about is enjoying yourself.

You have to learn how to balance the fun of traveling with work and school commitments. The following tips will help you do just that.

Understand What the Digital Nomad Lifestyle Will Be Like

You have to understand what the digital nomad lifestyle will be like if you want it to work out. You can assess whether this life is for you, and better prepare for it if you decide that it is.

Here are some critical points to consider about the digital nomad lifestyle:

  • A work-life balance is a must
  • Traveling often can be exhausting
  • You must ensure access to healthcare
  • You need a plan for financial stability
  • You’ll have to adapt to new cultures and languages
  • Knowing visa requirements and other legal requirements is essential
  • You might experience homesickness, especially if you go international
  • Balancing school with work and life in a new place is a big commitment

Dig into these factors and research all you’ll have to do and give up to be a digital nomad. Then, you can make an informed decision about moving forward.

Master Time Management

You’ll have to take your time management up a few notches if you want to be a digital nomad.

It’s one thing to balance life and school. It’s another to balance life, school, traveling, and potentially, work. You must learn how to divide your days so that you pay each of these things the attention they need. In addition, time management will ensure you don’t burn out.

Start with a routine to build some consistency into your days. Wake up at the same time regardless of your schedule and get ready for your days the same way.

You can establish priority tasks the night before, like your classes, if you’re working, and when you’ll study. Set aside time for breaks, meals, and leisure time as well. Building these activities into your schedule will ensure you actually do them.

Attach times to each task and activity. For example, you have classes from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. Next, you’ll have lunch from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. After that, you have work from 1:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Then, you’ll study from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., and the rest of the night is yours.

Manage your time wisely and you can achieve everything you set out for each day.

Learn How to Stay Productive

One of the biggest challenges digital nomads run into is staying productive. All of the fun activities you can do when you travel to a new place can be distracting. It might be hard to stay motivated when you’re homesick. Technical and logistical issues can impact your productivity as well.

So, learning how to maintain peak productivity while studying and working on the road is essential.

Adhering to the routine we mentioned above will help keep you focused. Eliminate distractions while working by turning your phone on Do Not Disturb and muting social media apps. Create a designated workspace. You could also incentivize productivity by promising yourself a fun activity after you complete your work.

Secure your tech setup as well to maintain optimal productivity. Make sure you have the basics, like a good laptop set up with the proper work and school software and noise-canceling headphones.

Another crucial tool to have is a mobile hotspot. A hotspot ensures you can connect to the internet wirelessly on your mobile devices from virtually anywhere. This will come in handy when you travel internationally or to places with spotty internet connections. No matter where you are, you can still access your studies and any work you’re doing online.

Equip yourself with the right tools and techniques to stay productive as a digital nomad.

Choose Work That Aligns With Your Studies and Interests

Digital nomads are known to take many different directions with their work. You have options and can easily make a living while studying and traveling abroad. The key is ensuring the work you do doesn’t distract from your education and pull you away from who you are.

You’ll have a much better experience as a digital nomad if you choose work that aligns with your studies and interests. Rather than taking the barista job at the local cafe, work with your school to see if there are any work-study opportunities where you’re traveling.

You can also take the job search into your own hands. Search for job openings before you head to your destination through online job boards. Ask for referrals from fellow students.

Consider fully remote positions as well. There are many work-from-home jobs available that can accommodate a college student’s digital nomad lifestyle, such as being a tutor or a content writer for subjects related to your major.

Whatever work you decide to do, make sure it doesn’t take away from your studies and aligns with who you are and what you want to be.


Many college students are attracted to the digital nomad lifestyle because it allows them to travel freely while studying and working where they want to. As enticing as this life is, being a digital nomad isn’t void of challenges.

Make sure you understand what you’re getting into, master time management, learn to stay productive, and choose work that aligns with your studies and interests to give yourself a real chance at a successful digital nomad life.

SEE ALSO: How to Choose the Right Student Housing in the U.S.

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