- Moving to another country is a difficult decision and process.
- Three American expats told Insider about their experiences in Costa Rica, Portugal and France.
- These expats discussed visas, financial planning, cultural integration, and more.
There are people who to like travel, and then there are people who inhabit to travel.
Kristin Wilson is the latter. Over the past 17 years Wilson has visited, worked and lived in 60 countries. She describes herself as a “digital nomad” – someone who works entirely remotely, often in remote locations – and is writing a book called “Digital Nomads For Dummies”.
Wilson said that after many years of frustrating bureaucracy that made it difficult for digital nomads to live, the COVID-19 pandemic has forced businesses and governments to finally accept that work can be done online.
“I encourage everyone to look at digital nomad visas,” she said, “because this is the first time in the history of the planet that governments have recognized that this way of life is possible. And they are making a real effort to attract remote workers and digital nomads to their countries.”
A study by MBO Partners found that in 2021, 15.5 million Americans consider themselves digital nomads; he said this was a 42% increase from 2020. While some of these nomads will remain in the United States – perhaps opting for van life or camping – others will seek abroad. The State Department estimated that 9 million American citizens lived abroad in 2019.
As COVID-19 restrictions around the world lift, Americans again have the opportunity to plan an international move. Insider spoke with three American expats to learn more about what it’s like to move overseas and what advice they have for others looking to do the same.