Of course, this whole WFH stuff could work out well for a lot of us. But with the ever-present risk of another full foreclosure, would you really want to spend another few months stuck in that cramped apartment?
Well, thanks to things like email and video chat apps, there may be very little need for many restless ex-office workers in these weird times to stay rooted in one place. It makes moving somewhere more fun, sunnier, or cheaper, incredibly tempting right now.
As countries around the world begin to reopen their borders to travelers, many popular destinations are prioritizing long stays over short stays. And in the extreme, some are even trying to market themselves as idyllic WFH spots with new visa programs that would allow you to live and work there for up to a year.
Could do you see yourself dialing Zoom calls from a lounge chair? So you should know that the Caribbean island of Dominica allows remote workers to live and work there for up to 18 months. Applicants must earn an income of $ 50,000 (£ 36,000 or A $ 66,000) or more, and the visa itself costs $ 800 (£ 583 or A $ 1,049) or $ 1,200 (£ 875 or A $ 1,574) for families.
Bahamas also operates an “Extended Access Travel Stay” program allowing workers and students to work or study remotely from any of the country’s 16 islands for up to one year. All you have to do is complete the application form here, then pay a fee of $ 1,000 (£ 750 or A $ 1,354) for the head of household (and $ 500 for each dependent) for a work visa, or $ 500 (£ 375 or A $ 677) as a as a student.
Iceland recently introduced its first long-term visa for those outside the European Economic Area. (EEA residents were already free to relocate to the volcanic country.) That means anyone can apply to live in the country for six months under a program called, imaginatively, ‘Work in Iceland“. Okay, not quite anyone: there is a minimum income of ISK 1 million per month, which equates to just over £ 66,000, $ 88,000 or A $ 120,000. And you will also need to pay for your health insurance.
If the Icelandic climate is not for you, then maybe you would be interested in Mauritiusthe “premium travel visa”, which will be valid for one year (and renewable even longer thereafter). All potential applicants need to do is produce “proof” of their long-stay plans and adequate travel and health insurance for their initial period of stay. Interested? The country announces that it will soon set up a new “electronic visa” application platform.
Dubai also just announced a long-term visa program for remote workers and their families. The largest city in the United Arab Emirates will allow you to stay for up to a year while working for foreign companies. The visa costs $ 287 (£ 221, A $ 404) plus medical insurance. There’s a catch, though: you need to earn at least $ 5,000 (£ 3,800, A $ 7,000) per month to qualify.
Likewise, the Cayman Islands will soon be implementing a new “Global Citizen Concierge Program” that will allow non-residents to work there for up to two years. However, this will only be available to those earning an annual salary of at least $ 100,000 (£ 77,000, A $ 140,000) or $ 150,000 (£ 115,000, A $ 210,000) for couples.
Are you not fully eligible for one or the other? Another seaside destination that is almost always sunny, Barbados, also has plans for a “12 Month Barbados Welcome Stamp” that would allow anyone earning $ 50,000 (£ 39,000 or A $ 70,000) or more to work remotely from the island.
On the project, the country’s Prime Minister Mia Mottley recently said The Washington Post: “The sun is powerful. Sea water is powerful. They are both therapeutic in a way that is difficult to explain. And we felt it, why not share it? Absolutely right!
In Europe, meanwhile, the beautiful Baltic country of Estonia launched its long-awaited “digital nomad” program. There is a similar salary threshold and you must either have an employment contract with an employer abroad, have your own registered business abroad, or work as a freelancer for predominantly non-Estonian clients.
At the crossroads of Europe and Asia, Georgia announced the establishment of a new visa program that will allow international visitors to work there remotely for an indefinite period. The program will be accessible to “citizens of all countries” and is aimed at freelancers and freelancers.
To take advantage of it, all you have to do is fill out an application form (requiring personal information, a work certificate, and a letter confirming that you are okay to undergo a 14-day quarantine) and get a ‘confirmation preliminary ”. The program will apply to anyone wishing to stay in the country for more than six months.
Bermuda, a British Overseas Territory in the North Atlantic, also launched a new residency program open to employees who work for “legitimate” foreign companies or their own companies and who have health insurance.
Another Caribbean nation, Anguilla, also plans to welcome remote workers with one-year visas. When reopening to travelers after the lockdown, the country said it would prioritize “ longer-stay visitors ” who can apply to live there for up to 12 months via a online form. Anyone who plans to stay between three months and a year must pay a fee of $ 2,000 (£ 1,500 or A $ 2,800), or $ 3,000 (£ 2,300, A $ 4,200) for a family of four.
So whether you are more into the idea of the crystal-clear Caribbean waters, cutting-edge Baltic architecture, hiking the breathtaking Caucasus mountains, camel trekking on the sands of Dubai or Bermuda’s incredibly instagrammable pink beaches, you’ve just found your home office setup. Zoom background? This is not a Zoom background!
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