With a drastic move away from the ‘work 9 to 5 to pay the bills’ mindset our parents grew up with, it’s never been more popular to be a digital nomad (someone who relies on technology to travel while working remotely). So much so that it’s been predicted that by 2035, over 1 billion people will be working this way.
It’s not hard to see why the nomadic lifestyle is so popular. After all, what could be better than choosing when, where and how you want to work (on a beach, after 10 am, with a cocktail in hands, obvs.) But it’s not all sunsets and sangria. Being a digital nomad can be hard work, especially when you’ve got things like crappy wi-fi connections and temperamental technology to contend with.
The good news is, having a few essential items on hand make it easy to deal with any logistical nightmares that come your way when working remotely. So, if you’re seriously thinking about giving the digital nomad thing a go, here are 5 tech essentials you’re going to need to have in your travel kit.
When you’re a digital nomad, the last thing you want is to run out of space on your laptop. Or worse yet, for your laptop to crash and you lose all your work! Having an external hard drive is an absolute must—especially if you’re taking a lot of photos on a camera (because those file sizes can be ginormous!) When you’re traveling, you can’t go past LaCie’s Rugged All Terrain hard drive. Not only does this compact device hold a huge amount of data (up to 5TB), it’s water resistant, drop resistant, shock resistant and dust-proof. Read: it’s virtually impossible to break! It’s also super fast, thanks to featuring an integrated thunderbolt cable.
Shop the LaCie Rugged hard drive.
You’re inevitably going to end up spending a lot of time working in cafes, co-working spaces and other public spaces. While a bit of background noise can be nice, sometimes you just want to get in the zone and get sh*t done. That’s where noise-cancelling headphones come in! Bose, Sennheiser and Kogan all do great ones. They also happen to be great on airplanes when you’re in the unfortunate predicament of sitting next to a crying baby.
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This one isn’t sexy or particularly fun, but it is important. There’s nothing more annoying than arriving in a new destination and realising you can’t charge your phone because you don’t have a travel adapter. This is especially the case when you’re traveling to a lot of different countries. Save yourself the time and effort and invest in a universal power adapter that works around the world. You can buy these in most electronic, hardware or department stores, but just make sure you go for one with surge protection (ie. won’t fry your devices).
It goes without saying that if you’re traveling to beautiful destinations, you’re going to need a good camera to capture it all. Now, what that means for you will depend on your budget and photography skills and interest level. If you’re just getting started with photography, a mirrorless camera is a lightweight option that bridges the gap between snap-and-shoot cameras and DSLRs. A small, collapsible tripod is also a good idea. If you prefer to keep it simple and snap pics on your phone, the Google Pixel 2 has one of the best cameras on the market right now. You can even pick up attachable lenses if you want to do anything a bit fancier!
Now that you’ve got all your gear sorted, you’re going to need a great bag to carry it all in. A backpack is always a great idea, as it allows you to go hands-free when you’re walking around or at the airport. A good backpack for digital nomads will be durable, comfortable, big enough to carry everything you need and have a separate pouch for your laptop when going through security at the airport. Kathmandu, Mountain Designs and Paddy Pallin all have great options.