Want to meet other digital nomads? These are the most - and least - popular European countries
If you could work from anywhere, where would you go?
The rise of digital nomadism has seen more and more people spread their wings; eschewing the office or WFH grind for a life of adventure.
If you’re turning the idea over in your mind, you might be picturing a beachside scene - typing away in a shaded cafe until you’ve cleared your inbox enough to soak up some rays.
The day-dream version of you would be forgiven for posting a snap to Instagram. Something humble and totally non-infuriating for your friends back home, like #officefortheday.
But a trawl through the social media app has found that digital nomads aren’t necessarily hitting the coast - many are moving to big cities.
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Researchers at resume.io, a CV building site, searched through thousands of posts featuring the hashtag #digitalnomad, and used geotagged locations to determine the most popular places.
It’s not a complete picture - not everyone is documenting their lives online, or hashtagging in English, after all - but it gives an idea of where workers with wanderlust are heading to.
Where are all the digital nomads going?
The US is the most popular location with digital nomads, according to the resume.io team. They found over 210,000 posts with the self-identifying hashtag, more than in any other country.
According to Statista, the main nationality of digital nomads worldwide is American, so it looks like many nomads are choosing to keep their travels stateside.
Spain is the second most popular country for digital nomads. With an official remote work visa launched earlier this month - allowing non-EU nationals to stay for up to five years, it’s likely to stay high on nomads’ lists.
Thailand came close behind in third place, followed by Mexico - though not all locals in Mexico City are happy about it - and France.
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Where are the most popular cities in Europe?
The findings aren’t groundbreaking, exactly. The cities with the most Instagram-happy digital nomads are popular with people more generally. New York is the digital nomad capital of the US and North America, while London has the most ‘vibrant’ digital nomad community worldwide.
The UK capital has clocked up over 20,000 hashtags as of this month. Though it doesn’t offer a specific digital nomad visa - and rents are sky high - the city’s great culture, nightlife and restaurants are proving to be a big draw for remote workers seeking a good time.
Paris ranked next, followed by Barcelona and Lisbon. Portugal has recently launched a new one-year digital nomad visa, so if you’re yet to experience the city of yellow trams, gorgeous tiles and grilled sardines, this might be your ticket. Just make sure not to annoy the locals too much.
With the exception of Athens (in fifth place) Europe’s top ten digital nomad hubs are all towards the west of Europe.
And with the exception of Funchal in Portugal, the team notes, all are capitals. Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, in tenth place, is the capital of one of Spain’s Canary Islands.
Quieter locations for digital nomads
If you’re thinking about making the digital nomad leap, it might be reassuring to know that these cities all have a thriving community of like-minded travellers.
But perhaps an abundance of other digital nomads isn’t what you’re after.
So it’s worth knowing that the lesser-known destinations which weren't flooded with tagged posts include Madagascar, Uruguay, Ghana, Denmark, Nepal and Ireland.
All of these countries had less than 10,000 posts each. Though Uruguay is likely to get a boost with its new digital nomad visa ensuring a smooth transition to South America.