This icy Norwegian island is ideal for digital nomads

London is famous for its history, culture and financial weight. But it’s not a great place to live if you’re a digital nomad.

The city scored an average 78e out of 100 in a ranking of remote work destinations published by Remote, a startup providing HR solutions for distributed teams.

But other European destinations have taken over, winning six of the top 10 slots. Perhaps the most surprising is Svalbard in Norway. The 3,000 inhabitants and 1,000 polar bears of the remote archipelago (No kidding) took sixth place, alongside Madrid [2nd], Madeira [4th], Helsinki [5th], Berlin [8th] and Dublin [9th].

“Alcohol is very expensive, but the cost of rent is relatively low.

Home to the world’s northernmost church, university and brewery, Svalbard is a place where “alcohol is very expensive but the cost of rent is relatively low,” says Job van der Voort, CEO and co-founder of Remote. It is also one of the few places in the world where anyone can live – citizens of any country are welcome to settle in Svalbard visa-free as long as they have a job and a place to live. .

At the other end of the scale is London. Despite a high score for openness to the diversity of lifestyles, safety and quality of life, the “overall score of the city [was] reduced due to the increased cost of living in the UK city compared to other global destinations, ”said Remote. Other European cities that performed poorly in the ranking include Budapest [79th], Bratislava [87th] and Warsaw [93rd].

The top 10 cities in total are: Toronto, Madrid, Auckland, Madeira, Helsinki, Svalbard, Berlin, Valparaiso, Dublin and Sydney. Salt Lake City claims 11e place, but U.S. cities are not listed higher due to strict immigration rules, van der Voort says.

The “most open-minded places” are Stockholm, Toronto and Amsterdam.

Technicians reassess life

The index comes at a time when tech workers are seeking to leave the big cities as they reassess work and life during the pandemic.

The survey ranks cities in all countries of the world for the quality of the Internet connection, attractiveness, security, quality of life, openness, cost of living and incentives for remote workers.

Auckland, Honolulu, Sydney and Reykjavík are among the top destinations offering the “best quality of life” for remote workers. The “most open-minded places” are Stockholm, Toronto and Amsterdam.

Italian Emilia Romagna has the greatest cash incentive for nomads.

A tool launched alongside the index allows users to measure the importance of these factors and generate a personalized list. If a user prioritizes the quality of the Internet connection, for example, the first destination becomes Madrid, while Bucharest and Copenhagen also rank in the top 10.

In total, the ranking counts 44 countries and 24 US states as having some special form of remote work incentive, in the form of digital nomadic visas, tax breaks, relocation payments or housing incentives.

Money or cattle

Nomadic patterns are notably different depending on where you are going. Aruba, an island in the Caribbean Sea, is awarded the Remote ranking for offering the best incentives to digital nomads through its “One Happy Workation” program.

Remote workers in Cabo Verde, on the other hand, are exempt from income tax, while the lowest monthly income requirement of any country, around £ 300, is offered by Ecuador.

Some cities want digital nomads to stay long term as part of a rejuvenation campaign. Emilia Romagna in Italy, for example, has the biggest cash incentive for nomads, paying parents under 40 almost £ 25,000 to relocate. Other cities, particularly dependent on tourism, now also offer visas for digital nomads who wish to extend their stay beyond six months.

But it’s Mishima in central Japan that has the strangest offer to woo nomads – the choice of a lump sum of around $ 2.7,000 or a calf.

Éanna Kelly is editor-in-chief at Sifted. He tweets from @ EannaKelly1.

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