The increasing reliance on telecommunications technology for the fulfillment of our professional obligations means more and more people are choosing to be digital nomads. This essentially means moving from one city or country to another on a regular basis and earning your living online.
While it’s an enticing arrangement which offers the potential for adventure and life-changing experience, the life of a digital nomad presents several complications in relation to successful money management. With this in mind, let’s take a look at some useful money management tips for digital nomads:
Scan your documents
Traveling frequently means it’s not feasible to keep folders of important financial documents with you. Consider using a scan app to digitize hard copies of billing statements, bank statements, payment receipts, invoices, and other financial documents. While your original travel documents like passport and visa should be kept, these should also be scanned and saved digitally. This frees up limited space in your luggage, improves organization, reduces liability, and gives you a centralized documents deposit accessible online.
Always be mindful of exchange rate
Most international travelers are generally aware of exchange rates, but keeping a mental note of the conversion is important for those who earn money in one form of currency and spend it in another. In a country where prices are relatively low compared to those in your native country, it’s easy to find yourself overspending unless you’re consciously constantly converting prices in your head. Make this a habit to keep your finances in control.
Use a VPN
A life of constantly accessing the internet from strange and unfamiliar networks puts you at an increased risk of becoming the victim of cybercrime. By using a virtual private network, digital nomads reduce the chances of someone gaining unauthorized access to their online accounts. This protects your financial information, which helps to prevent money in your online bank accounts from being accessed and stolen.
Use several different passwords
While a VPN goes a long way toward protecting your personal and financial information, it’s not enough. Go further by using a variety of passwords online. Those who stick to one or two passwords place themselves at an increased risk of having someone successfully hack their online accounts. This is because hackers might gain access to a poorly secured system and sell username-password combinations on the dark web. Criminal organizations buy these lists and go to work seeing if the same log-in credentials can be used to access bank and credit card accounts.
Have an emergency fund set aside
Any number of unforeseen events can arise while traveling. Many of these incidents involve spending money to resolve. What’s more, digital nomads are likely earning their income as freelancers, which carries with it an increased risk of available working drying up at any given time. These two potential threats to your personal finances make it important to have an emergency fund available. This money should be reserved in the event of unforeseen circumstances or the temporary loss of income. It’s an option in which you don’t want to find yourself unable to access when needed.
The life of a digital nomad is one that attracts many individuals. But it also creates certain obstacles to successful money management and personal finance which are ordinarily less common. With this in mind, it’s important for digital nomads to practice responsible money management relative to their wayfaring lifestyle.