This week on #bufferchat, we talked about the world of digital nomadism — when people travel and work on the internet from anywhere. The community discussed ways to meet people and build community while traveling, tips for staying productive on the go, great places to work from in new cities, and much more.

Read on to discover all of the awesome insights that were shared during the chat, from our community and from our guest this week, travel blogger and digital nomad Jules Hatfield of Don’t Forget to Move (@DontForget2Move)!

Catch our weekly Twitter chat, #bufferchat, at TWO times every Wednesday for valuable industry insights and to meet hundreds of other smart marketers and social media enthusiasts. Same topic, same place, just at different times – feel free to join in to whichever chat time works best for you!

For our community in Asia and Australia (or anyone else!): 4 pm AEST (Sydney time)

For our community in North/South America, Europe and Africa (or others!): 9 am PT (San Francisco time)

Bufferchat on April 26, 2017 (Topic = Digital Nomadism)

This week’s stats:
1st Bufferchat: 36 participants; 230 tweets; reach of 1,080,542
2nd Bufferchat: 129 participants; 884 tweets; reach of 1,702,284

Q1: If you’re a digital nomad, what does your day-to-day lifestyle look like? (or what would you imagine it to look like?)

From Jules:

  • Depends on where we are! Usually slow mornings bc we like to sleep in, working at a coffee shop before meeting new friends!
  • Usually we work from an apartment we rent from AirBnB, usually in our sweatpants, haha. We love making our own hours.

From the community:

  • “Coffee/tea & exploration with notebook/tablet in hand for ideas – lots of new places/travel – writing in late AM/early PM.” @BettaBeYou
  • “I wake up at 5am, do my morning routine, then I go wherever the food is fresh and the coffee is hot!” @_Jason_Michael
  • “A morning workout to wake up > head to a #coworking space for the day > then explore my surroundings and/or find a meetup.” @twotravelabroad

See all the great answers to question 1 here!

Q2: How do you stay productive while on the go?

From Jules:

  • Setting certain work hours helps and keeping on top of deadlines with programs like Asana.
  • Working w/ other digital nomads in co-working spaces is helpful because you can share ideas and keep each other motivated.

From the community:

  • “I try to plan my week out in advance so I know what needs to be done. Keeping my calendar synced helps a ton.” @MindofaDiva
  • “I do the most critical activities 1st at my most productive time in a quiet spot with coffee.” @RaulARovira
  • “I keep a list on my Trello of what I need to get done. A spare 5 minutes is often a full task or at last the beginning of one.” @EverydayAims

See all the great answers to question 2 here!

Q3: How do you go about finding great places to do your work in new cities?

From Jules:

  • Googling “best cafes to work at in X” is a good start. There’s a lot of co-working places popping up that are perfect!
  • Walking around town you can usually find a few cafes w/ wifi and don’t mind you staying for a while w/ your laptop.

From the community:

  • and googling co-working *insert city here*. They are always well equipped and you meet amazing people!” @ForresterHinds
  • “When I traveled more I would make a list of local coffee shops. also, being brave enough to ask locals about cool locations!” @bradleebartlett
  • “Lots of research and mapping! I check out lifestyle bloggers and find out where they’re working in cities I plan on visiting.” @kaitlynuy_

Other ideas from the community: public libraries, hotel lobbies, workfrom.co

See all the great answers to question 3 here!

Q4: What are some ways to meet people and build community as you’re traveling?

From Jules:

  • Start at the main digital nomad hubs like Chiang Mai and Medellin to meet fellow digital nomads who you can travel with!
  • Couchsurfing.com and Meetup.com are awesome websites for connecting with others in your area over shared interests.

From the community:

  • “I spent 5 mo in Brazil & signed up for photo classes. Met people w/ shared hobby, learned language, & discovered new places.” @ARoberts021
  • “Ask people where the best places to work are! and coworking spaces are great ways to meet people on the go!” @MaggieBizz
  • “Participate in SoMe communities like #SocialRoadTrip, a great way to meet online folks IRL & gets you out of your backyard!” @ideabloke

See all the great answers to question 4 here!

Q5: What are your top tips for preventing travel burnout?

From Jules:

  • Slow down! Take a month, rent an apartment and get to know one place for a while. Traveling fast = burn out.
  • Remember: you can’t see everything. Pick places that interest you the most and give yourself enough time to explore them.

From the community:

  • “SLEEP! It’s so under-rated and so important when traveling. Never let your sleep debt get bigger than your overdraft!” @bucketsdotco
  • “Take some “you time” – work balance can be off chart. Take a swim, take a walk around town, grab a coffee by yourself.” @robchristianson
  • “Don’t hop around so much that it’s overwhelming. Practice gratitude daily, journal, seek beauty wherever you are.” @JackieMJensen

See all the great answers to question 5 here!

Q6: Where are great places online to connect with other digital nomads?

From Jules:

From the community:

See all the great answers to question 6 here!

Q7: Do you think digital nomadism is the future of work? Why or why not?

From Jules:

  • Yes! More and more people are telecommuting for work so companies are getting used to hiring digital nomads!
  • More people are learning about the lifestyle and how it’s not difficult to find work online or start a business.

From the community:

  • “It might be the future, but it’s not for me. I love working in-house with a team. Bouncing ideas with immediate feedback.” @MichaelRo22ss
  • “I think so. People like flexibility. An opportunity to work from where they can be more productive. The tools are there.” @JameelDesai
  • “Maybe not “nomadism”, but #remotework absolutely. Some aren’t fond of #travel but love working from home.” @Anne_E_Mercer
  • “Digital nomadism has to be the future; as long as we continue to challenge traditional methods of learning & working.” @SipBlackdotNET
  • “It’s a lifestyle that needs to suit you. It’s not for anybody, just like entrepreneurship. On the move, fluid work-style.” @ZalkaB

See all the great answers to question 7 here!


Thank you so much to Jules and to everyone who shared their advice in this chat!

Do you have any comments or answers to these questions? Leave your thoughts in the comments! We’d love to hear from you!

Image sources: UnSplash

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Written by Arielle Tannenbaum

Community Strategist at Buffer. In addition to her love of community building, Arielle also loves vegetables, cooking, practicing yoga, meditating, living mindfully, and exploring the connections between health and happiness!