Ready for a Remote Year? Read This First.

We’ll be blunt: if you work remotely, the four walls surrounding your home office can quickly start to feel a bit ho-hum. We don’t know about you, but if we had the option to take our morning meetings from our desk or the dock, we’re going with the latter. And, thanks to the uptick in trend to live life as a nomad, digitally, there are plenty of resources to make your dreams of *proper* remote work possible. 

Not sure if it’s for you? Keep reading as the Guide to Graduate team shares the items to consider before you start throwing your laptop into your suitcase.

What’s the Difference Between a Remote Year and Working from Home, Remotely?

Think of your standard work-from-home setup. You either set up shop in your home office for the majority of the day, or take your laptop with you to a local coffee shop to get out of the confinement of your home space. Either way, you’ll still end up back at home once the work day is over, going about your usual routine and responsibilities.

A remote year, on the other hand, is more immersive. As you continue to work remotely, Taking a remote year means that, as you continue to work remotely, you’re also exploring new places, cultures, lifestyles, and diversities of countries and cities around the world. By immersing yourself in day-to-day life, you get a chance to break out of your comfort zone and usual daily habits as you explore new people, places, and things the world has to offer. And the cherry on top? You’ll still be continuing to earn your paycheck. 

Now of course, exploring new places, and finding living accomodations once there, can be a huge challenge. That’s where companies like Remote Year come in. By providing everything from flights and accommodations, to remote working spaces and hosted tours and events, organizations are popping up everywhere to assist digital nomads in making a remote year hassle-free (that is, as hassle-free as traveling the world while working full-time can be!). 

So, what’s the catch?

See the world, stay at your job–there has to be a catch, right? It really all depends on your personality and preferences. 

Traveling for a long period of time (often a year) isn’t for home bodies. If you miss your personal space and the comforts of home after a short vacation, you may want to reconsider. Afterall, the goal of a remote year is to see as many new places and cultures as you can. If continually switching up hotels, cities, and countries puts you off-ease, you may want to stick with vacationing.

Additionally, if you’re not excited about the destinations planned, you may want to consider visiting those spots solo instead. Organized remote years are often planned out in extensive detail, and have little room for flexibility. If the majority of the locations on the map don’t interest you, perhaps save your cash for a solo trip. 

And speaking of cash…

Taking a remote year is not cheap. In lieu of living at home, you will need to cover living expenses, including housing, food, and extracurricular activities. Pre-planned remote year programs cost participants an average of $2,000 per month. So, if you own a home and have other bills to maintain on top of your travels, you may actually end up spending more than you’re earning. 

For this exact reason, most career coaches recommend saving the full cost of a remote year before traveling to ensure you don’t set yourself up to be greeted by debt when you return home.  

Finally, if you’re still on the fence about going all-in on a remote year, consider starting off small. Test shorter remote working trips that you can drive to for a week or so, and see how you balance adjusting to a new place while working your full-time job before taking the leap. 

Have you participated in a remote year? Share your experience with us in the comments!

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