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It might sound like a contradiction: digital nomad equals freedom. Right? Digital Nomad with family sounds like all the other things but freedom. If you are laughing now, you most likely have kids yourself. Even if I am exaggerating here, I think you get my point…
The laptop lifestyle initially attracted the 20somethings single freelancer dudes. But time has changed and so have we, the digital nomad generation that started this lifestyle has matured.
Many of us are still on the road and have designed their nomadic life WITH kids. We know a lot of families living alternative lifestyles and it’s always refreshing to see that we are not the only ones.
So, if you have doubts that the digital nomad lifestyle is feasible or not, even when you tag your spouse and kids along, then read on! This article will help you see why you can be a digital nomad with a family – and that it’s actually a lot of fun.
Most people who are new to this way of living ask me how we manage to focus on our job. I get it, usually you are in beautiful places, like Koh Phangan in Thailand, for example, where the beach is calling you every day. But then again this is the key to it: we are in these settings on a daily basis. That’s why we can also easily stay away from the beach or skip sight seeing as we have time to do so on the long run. We don’t have the urge to tick off as many activities as possible in a short amount of time as most tourists or traveling families have.
The perks of being a digital nomad with family
I will state the obvious first: When you have kids AND a career, it sometimes can become overwhelming to give your best in all areas of your life. Keeping up with your daily chores plus your job, travel planning AND raising kids – the plate is really full.
And this is when the digital nomad lifestyle comes in very handy. You are in charge to create your work schedule and organise your playtime. For me, that’s what I love love love about our lifestyle, as exhausting as it might sound, at least we have the freedom to work our job around our kids’ needs.
I always put my children first. Sometimes this means that I have to add a night shift to get work done. But it doesn’t bother me, because I prefer it this way. At least I know that I was there for my children during the day when they needed me.
Quick facts about being a digital nomad with a family
- Claudio and I both have a steady income and still spend as much time as we want to with our children.
- No day looks the same, no matter how structured we are – WHICH WE LIKE.
- Our children are in the privileged position to have their mommy and daddy around them to an equal amount of time during the day. That’s, of course, wonderful for bonding.
- We work as much or even more as we used to in our ‘normal’ jobs.
- We slowed down as soon as we got kids and now choose to stay in one place for around six months.
At the moment, our nomad life with a baby describes the following daily routine: we rotate watching the kids on a half day basis. When I play with the kids in the morning, Claudio will take care of them in the afternoon and the following morning too, before it’s my turn again. This way, each of us gets to work a full day cut into half. Get it? It helps a lot when you are working on a project and want to focus on something longer than just half a day.
Yet, there is a lot more to keeping sanity as a digital nomad family. We already shared our tips in this article. But here are briefly our tips to juggle this travelling life with kids:
Tips on how to live and work remotely as a digital nomad with a baby
- Having a set schedule or a routine, really helps everyone in our family to make this lifestyle of remote work and travelling with kids work.
- Communicate EVERY need and problem that is arising – it’s key to avoid major crises!
- Regularly remember your ‘why’ and you will stay motivated and dedicated to pursue your new dream life.
- Zoom out and laugh about life more often – humor really helps when you’re finding yourself in challenging situations or when you’re miserable. Try to not take everything so serious – life is good!
- Your children will thank you later – so, all you are doing today, they will remember as they remember a happy childhood and experiences, not toys!
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Challenges of being a digital nomad with a toddler
Life seems to stop when you have children. Not really but yes, it changes a lot.
As digital nomad parents, you will slow down for sure. You adjust and transform your daily life according to the new little human’s needs. You know, I think it’s a lot of fun to be able to do so in a surrounding where others go on holiday.
So, I don’t mind slowing down or stopping even for a while. Claudio and I have done our travels before, individually and together. So, we don’t feel that we are missing out on something.
Now, it’s all about the kids. And we believe in the saying “Happy parents have happy children.” I just made this one up but it does resonate with our motto. What good does it do to live in a city where the kids have all the toys in the world and their own room but their parents are miserable?!
I cannot speak for families with older children as both my kids are very young still. In their cases, I can definitely say that it is the best decision we have made to take them to places where we find our ideal surroundings. For us, this is pleasant weather, other families, affordable prices and friendly people. Thailand is one of these places, we’ve found.
>>>>Perhaps you might also like this article about
my life as a digital nomad mum.<<<<
FAQ for digital nomad parents
Finally, here are some of the most frequently asked questions that we get asked and that we have heard other families living alternative lifestyles get asked very often:
- Nomad family meaning: A family that travels around the world and makes money from remote work or an online business. They usually home-school their kids or have found their ideal way of alternative education.
- What does the nomad life with a baby look like? As mentioned above, it’s a lot of fun, it’s a lot slower than before and it is also challenging at times. But we prefer to rock our baby to sleep with the sound of the ocean waves and let him learn how to crawl and walk on a sandy beach.
- Is there a remote year for families too? Yes, there is! We highly recommend checking out Remote Year if you want to test out the waters and travel with other families for one year.
- What travel insurance do you have? We recommend SafetyWing, their medical travel insurance is made by nomads for nomads, which is why it fits best for our needs. We love it because they are affordable, flexible and all we need. You can book instantly online and cancel any day. Check them out here.
- Have you found any digital nomad jobs in Thailand? We have, in a sense. We don’t have a work permit for Thailand but whenever we meet new people, they are interested in our story and in how we make money. Sometimes it turns out that they are in need of our services and so we start a new online gig.
- Do I need to start a travel family blog in order to become a digital nomad with family? You definitely don’t have to start a blog, if you don’t feel like this is something you will be enjoying. Blogging is tough and requires dedication. So, don’t start if it’s not something you really want to be doing for the next five to ten years. But I can say that it really helps for connecting with brands, other bloggers, creating an online presence and so much more. I wrote about it in this article in a more detailed manner.
- Are there any other families who travel? Absolutely! We are not the only ones. 🙂 As described above, there are more and more digital nomad parents and many events around the world to connect people with a similar mindset. Check this list for events in 2020.
No matter if you are single, in a relationship or have a family, becoming a digital nomad and changing your lifestyle is a big step. Take your time to think about all the things you have to organise first and make sure that you have your finances in order before you start travelling. Once you’ve decided to choose this way, you can congratulate yourself, as every new experience will bring benefits to you and your family.
Plus, you can always try it out for a while and if you don’t like it, simply go back to your old life. But I warn you, most people we know who have started living location-independently and world-travelled the world on a full-time basis, find it hard to imagine to go back to the life they led before. If you are in doubts and want to get help, please check out our digital nomad coaching services here.
Did we miss anything? Do you have more questions? Leave a comment below, we’d love to know!
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