There's no doubt that the pandemic has changed the face of traditional work forever. While some workers are gearing up to return to the office soon, others aren’t quite so convinced. Many employees have found comfort and great benefits to working from home – or rather anywhere! And countries previously hit hard by Covid-19 travel restrictions are certainly taking advantage of this new way of work.
To boost tourism and economies around the world, the following places are offering up long-term work permits for digital nomads. So if you’ve dreamt about becoming a digital nomad before, there’s no better chance to fulfill that dream than now! Pack your bags, passport, laptop and beach sandals — check out all the places you can move to and work from.
🇨🇻 Cabo Verde
The Cabo Verde Remote Working Program offers visas to remote workers looking to escape to the island country for up to six months, which can be renewed for another six months afterward. It’s open for all Europeans and aimed at people who are self-employed and don’t require an office to get their work done. You can even bring your family under the program. You’ll need a valid passport, health insurance and proof of income (minimum average account balance of 1,500 EUR over the last six months or 2,700 EUR if you’re coming with family).
The Premium Travel Visa is aimed at professionals who wish to come to Mauritius to work remotely. While you do need proof of income during your stay, the best part of this visa is that it's free to get. You’ll also need proof of accommodation and employment outside of Mauritius. The visa is valid for up to a year and can be renewed. You can apply online with a full list of guidelines to follow.
Ready to work from heaven on earth? The archipelago offers what’s known as the The ‘Seychelles Workcation’ program which welcomes self-employed and freelancers to work on any of the 115 islands for 30 days up to a year. You just need a valid passport, health insurance, proof of employment and sufficient funds (exact amount isn’t specified). To apply, you’ll pay a one-time fee of 45 EUR.
During a virtual event on 13 August 2020, Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment Luhut Pandjaitanthat announced that a new official regulation is in the works that’ll allow foreign IT specialists to work while living or vacationing in the country. This is certainly a reason for digital nomads to celebrate and something to look forward to. Indonesia is another attractive country for remote workers and expats, as the cost of living is cheaper than in Western countries.
🇱🇰 Sri Lanka
If you’re dreaming of South Asia, Sri Lanka is calling! They’re launching a digital nomad visa for up to one year in an attempt to boost foreign exchange and tourism. With low living costs and beautiful scenery to take in, this is a fantastic option for workers in search of a breathtaking remote work experience.
The beautiful island of Anguilla offers a program for remote workers called Beyond Extraordinary Anguilla program where nomads can work for up to 12 months. You’ll need proof of employment, a police record, copy of your birth certificate, passport and a brief description of the type of work you’ll be doing to be eligible to work from paradise.
🇦🇬 Antigua and Barbuda
The two islands offer what’s called a Nomad Digital Residence (NDR) which is a long-term stay visa for two years. To qualify for the visa, you need to be employed or self-employed and pay income tax in your native country. If you’re interested and eligible, you can easily apply online if you’ve got your passport, birth certificate, medical insurance to cover you for the duration of your stay, police clearance and enough money to support yourself and any accompanying dependents.
🇧🇸 The Bahamas
The Bahamas offers remote workers a Bahamas Extended Access Travel Stay (BEATS) permit which allows digital nomads to work on any of the islands for up to a year and is extendable for up to three years! It’s a quick turnaround too for those who are truly interested and eligible — just five working days to process your application! To submit your online application, make sure you have your passport, medical insurance and proof of employment. Only after your application is accepted will you be prompted to pay for your Work Remotely permit.
If you’re craving beautiful year-long weather and crystal blue beaches, this could be a prime location. In mid-July last year, this Caribbean country introduced the “Welcome Stamp”, which allows remote workers to work on the island for a year (you can reapply for it later).
You must work for a foreign company and won’t have to pay income tax in Barbados. Applicants must expect to earn at least 50,000 USD and obtain valid health insurance. It costs 2,000 USD to apply (3,000 USD if moving with family), and the application is entirely online. Your application will be confirmed or denied in just five business days, making it one of the more feasible options.
The Dutch Caribbean island introduced its @HOME in Curaçao program at the top of the year to encourage remote workers to visit and work from the island. You’ll need to complete the online application form, have proof of health insurance and employment to qualify. Processing time takes two weeks and if approved, you’ll be able to work remotely from the colourful island for six months with the possibility of extension for another six months afterward.
The island nation has created the Work in Nature (WIN) Extended Stay Visa for digital nomads to come and work for a while — more specifically 18 months. You should expect to earn at least 50,000 USD annually and have enough to support yourself and any family members accompanying you. After you submit your application, you’ll receive an approval letter within seven days if you’re successful and have 30 days to pay the visa fee thereafter.
The Montserrat Remote Work Stamp is valid for up to one year with a quick processing time of seven days once you submit your application. Like many of the places on this list, you must prove you work, conduct business or offer freelance or consulting services for a foreign company and can carry out your work remotely. You’ll also need a minimum annual income of 70,000 USD, police record, passport size photograph, copy of passport and health insurance with Covid-19 coverage.
🇨🇷 Costa Rica
The ‘Rentista Visa’ in Costa Rica is one of the few temporary visas for workers that can lead to permanent residency or even citizenship if that’s something you’re after. The visa is issued to people who have a guaranteed source of income for two years and can be renewed so long as you’re still meeting the requirements. Also known as the Person Of Independent Means Visa, workers can establish businesses or work on their own but may not work as employees.
Since the start of this year, this Balkan country has offered a digital nomad visa for non-EU nationals. To be eligible, you must be a third-country national working for a company outside of Croatia and can apply for the permit for up to a year. You’ll need a government-issued background check from your home country, proof of valid health and travel insurance for the duration of your visa, a Croatian address and proof that you’ll have sufficient funds to support yourself (i.e., earn 16,900 kuna or 2,240 EUR).
Many expats flock to this country as the cost of living is relatively cheap compared to North America and other European countries.
The European country has introduced its Digital Nomad Visa (DNV) for remote workers who wish to work in the Baltic nation for a year. It’s one of the first visas of its kind in the world and doesn’t require high-level skills. To be granted this permit, you must have a work contract with a company outside of Estonia and be able to make an income of at least 3,504 EUR gross per month. With this visa, you’ll also be able to travel to other Schengen countries for up to 90 days on the same permit.
If you’re looking for a different kind of setting, you can move to this Eurasian country filled with snow-capped mountains and beautiful wine regions.
In mid-July of last year, Georgia announced that a program focusing on freelancers and self-employed foreigners was in the works. Along with an application form, prospects will also need to present an employment certificate and have valid travel insurance for at least six months. Workers will also need to earn a minimum of 1,655 EUR per month to be eligible.
Greece is also next on the list to offer remote workers a digital nomad visa — the government is currently working on a special 18-month travel visa (12-month stay then six-month extension) for digital nomad workers working for foreign employers; ideal for those in blogging, web development, online marketing or art industries. You’ll need a minimum income of 3,500 EUR to apply and proof of employment via a worker’s contract.
The beautiful nation offers long-term visas for remote workers for a stay of up to 180 days. Bear in mind this special visa is issued to non-EU/EEA/EFTA that don’t require any other visa to enter Iceland. Interested digital nomads should have a work contract with a foreign company (i.e., outside of Iceland), health insurance, police clearance and a monthly income equivalent to ISK 1,000,000 (or ISK 1,300,000 if coming with family).
Digital nomads hoping to work in the archipelago can apply for the Nomad Residence Permit which allows remote workers to stay and work for up to one year and is renewable. Hopeful applicants must be third-country nationals, work for a foreign employer or conduct business, freelance work or consulting services for a company outside of Malta. You’ll also need a gross monthly income of 2,700 EUR, passport, health insurance, proof of a property rental or purchase agreement and a passed background check.
The Nordic country offers the Independent Contractor Visa for up to two years for remote workers. This is meant for self-employed workers with a contract to work on a project for a business in Norway, unlike other places in this post. You must prove you have the relevant qualifications for your profession, proof of accommodation and a gross income of at least 35,719 EUR. You’ll need to apply at your nearest Norwegian Embassy with all of your supporting documents and the visa application fee is 600 EUR.
Romania is on the verge of offering one of these special visas to remote workers too. The likely requirements for workers looking to move here will be proof of employment with a foreign company, health insurance and proof that the worker will have an income of at least 5,429 lei or 1,100 EUR. With a low cost of living, the country is known for its top quality, fast and reliable internet, even in rural parts of the country so it’s certain to be a great option for remote workers.
Spain is one of the latest countries planning to introduce a digital nomad permit that’ll allow you to stay and work in the country for up to a year, after which, you can extend for up to 24 months. Remote workers will also benefit from a reduced income tax rate. Workers wishing to apply must prove they’re working for a country outside of Spain or for foreign clients.
Spain is a generally affordable country to live in and not to mention beautiful so if this is a country that’s been on your bucket list, here’s your opportunity!
Bermuda is another island option for those seeking to work from paradise. On 1 August 2020, the country launched the One Year Residential Certificate scheme, which allows remote workers to stay and work in the country for a year.
It costs 263 USD to apply, and applicants must show proof of employment with a company outside of the island. You’ll also need to have your birth certificate, passport-sized photos, health insurance, and character and employment references. Turnaround is quick — applicants should have a response to their visa application within five working days. For the duration of the visa, you’ll be able to leave and re-enter the country as you wish.
Living and working in paradise comes at a steep price so the cost of living is certainly something to keep in mind.
Be aware that many of these places also have certain Covid-19 vaccination, quarantine or testing requirements before your travels so be sure to look up the necessary documents needed before you jet off.
Don’t forget to pack your Monese card too — especially if your destination is somewhere in Europe. Use your EUR account to spend like a true local in your new country. You can also quickly share your account details with your employer straight from your app to get your salary deposited right into your account. Let us know your travel plans on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram or email us at email@example.com.
Safe travels and happy remote working!
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