Recruiters
June 22, 2020

Working Remotely Abroad in the Age of COVID-19

Working abroad quickly became a possibility and reality in the early 2000s, right up until February 2020. Digital nomads used to describe the ease of working out of a backpack, travelling from city to city, and setting up their laptops wherever they desired. In the new era, those realities have quickly become impossibilities due to the global pandemic.
Source: Unsplash

Travel has taken a great pause during the Covid-19 pandemic. The tourism sector, in general, is in shambles and will lose millions of dollars this summer, and for some time to come, as travellers everywhere put a hold on their destination plans amid this public health crisis and the uncertainty that surrounds it.

Developers, digital nomads, and those are able to work remotely and travel at the same time have also had their lifestyles severely impacted by the pandemic. What seemed feasible just a few months ago is now going to be impossible or risk-laden when it comes to working abroad.

Those developers who will have to return to their country of origins and wait for this thing out will miss the advantages of being able to travel and work remotely, such as:

 

·      Cheaper rents and taxes

·      Cultural sights and getaways that inspire remote abroad workers to keep travelling abroad

·      Greater networking possibilities/conference opportunities

While it might seem like the obstacles to working abroad for a software developer or web developer are just in terms of getting sick, there also other considerations to take into account.

Obstacles of working abroad and public services

In France, outdoor cafes and seating have just returned at the beginning of June, and it makes one thing pretty clear: people were dying to get back outside and talk to each other in a social setting. The European café culture, especially in Western Europe, is a symbol of citizenship, of being involved with a community, and a way of life. For developers and remote workers abroad, many who work on their laptops most of the days, finding cafes and good indoor cafes with air conditioning during the summer months is essential.

But there is currently a public service problem, in the U.S. and abroad in almost every developed country. Indoor seating is hardly available yet, and workspaces for enhancing productivity, like cafes and WeWork, are still mostly closed, not giving many outlets for travellers to work from.

It might seem like a non-issue, but having a productive environment to work in while tasked with long assignments can make the process excruciatingly painful. Innovators need places to think, and that’s what public services can provide.

The other issue is hostels and finding a place to stay while working abroad. Before the pandemic, and while hostels are not always the best option for remote workers because of noise levels, hostels have been consistently ranked as reliable and mostly clean places to stay on a budget. Hostels are incredibly important for servicing an ecosystem of travellers who might need to just stay for one or two nights, while they are adjusting and catching up with their sleep, and before the pandemic hit any experienced traveller could tell you that booking a night on HostelWorld was no issue at all.

But the global hosteling industry is adding health precautions, as they should, and limiting the number of guests they can take at one time. The pandemic is also changing the fact that travellers no longer want to sleep in the same room with a stranger, and this is, and has been, a hallmark of travelling and getting a cheap rate for a night. Overall, the pandemic has added many stressors for remote workers abroad, and finding a good accommodation at a decent price is one of them.

Airfare and Enhanced Protections

The ease of jumping from city to city abroad used to be no sweat. But with new regulations regarding Covid-19, travelling to and from airports has become a major hassle, as airport personnel and staff want to protect the lives of everyone who enters and exits its premises. While enhanced regulations due to Covid-19 are absolutely necessary, they are not making anyone’s lives easier at the airport, and the fears of contagion are particularly high among travellers these days.

This is also not to mention that travel restrictions are limiting points of entry for respective citizens. In a recent development, the U.S. just announced a travel ban from Brazil.

In time, the virus will pass, and remote workers will be able to travel with ease again, but for right now the best strategy is to sit this one out. Global travel will be back again soon enough.

Tags Covid-19Remote Work
Michael Robbins
Writer
Michael is a writer that helps organizations align their mission and values to a wide audience.

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RecruitersJune 22, 2020
Working Remotely Abroad in the Age of COVID-19
Working abroad quickly became a possibility and reality in the early 2000s, right up until February 2020. Digital nomads used to describe the ease of working out of a backpack, travelling from city to city, and setting up their laptops wherever they desired. In the new era, those realities have quickly become impossibilities due to the global pandemic.

Travel has taken a great pause during the Covid-19 pandemic. The tourism sector, in general, is in shambles and will lose millions of dollars this summer, and for some time to come, as travellers everywhere put a hold on their destination plans amid this public health crisis and the uncertainty that surrounds it.

Developers, digital nomads, and those are able to work remotely and travel at the same time have also had their lifestyles severely impacted by the pandemic. What seemed feasible just a few months ago is now going to be impossible or risk-laden when it comes to working abroad.

Those developers who will have to return to their country of origins and wait for this thing out will miss the advantages of being able to travel and work remotely, such as:

 

·      Cheaper rents and taxes

·      Cultural sights and getaways that inspire remote abroad workers to keep travelling abroad

·      Greater networking possibilities/conference opportunities

While it might seem like the obstacles to working abroad for a software developer or web developer are just in terms of getting sick, there also other considerations to take into account.

Obstacles of working abroad and public services

In France, outdoor cafes and seating have just returned at the beginning of June, and it makes one thing pretty clear: people were dying to get back outside and talk to each other in a social setting. The European café culture, especially in Western Europe, is a symbol of citizenship, of being involved with a community, and a way of life. For developers and remote workers abroad, many who work on their laptops most of the days, finding cafes and good indoor cafes with air conditioning during the summer months is essential.

But there is currently a public service problem, in the U.S. and abroad in almost every developed country. Indoor seating is hardly available yet, and workspaces for enhancing productivity, like cafes and WeWork, are still mostly closed, not giving many outlets for travellers to work from.

It might seem like a non-issue, but having a productive environment to work in while tasked with long assignments can make the process excruciatingly painful. Innovators need places to think, and that’s what public services can provide.

The other issue is hostels and finding a place to stay while working abroad. Before the pandemic, and while hostels are not always the best option for remote workers because of noise levels, hostels have been consistently ranked as reliable and mostly clean places to stay on a budget. Hostels are incredibly important for servicing an ecosystem of travellers who might need to just stay for one or two nights, while they are adjusting and catching up with their sleep, and before the pandemic hit any experienced traveller could tell you that booking a night on HostelWorld was no issue at all.

But the global hosteling industry is adding health precautions, as they should, and limiting the number of guests they can take at one time. The pandemic is also changing the fact that travellers no longer want to sleep in the same room with a stranger, and this is, and has been, a hallmark of travelling and getting a cheap rate for a night. Overall, the pandemic has added many stressors for remote workers abroad, and finding a good accommodation at a decent price is one of them.

Airfare and Enhanced Protections

The ease of jumping from city to city abroad used to be no sweat. But with new regulations regarding Covid-19, travelling to and from airports has become a major hassle, as airport personnel and staff want to protect the lives of everyone who enters and exits its premises. While enhanced regulations due to Covid-19 are absolutely necessary, they are not making anyone’s lives easier at the airport, and the fears of contagion are particularly high among travellers these days.

This is also not to mention that travel restrictions are limiting points of entry for respective citizens. In a recent development, the U.S. just announced a travel ban from Brazil.

In time, the virus will pass, and remote workers will be able to travel with ease again, but for right now the best strategy is to sit this one out. Global travel will be back again soon enough.

Covid-19
Remote Work
About the author
Michael Robbins -Writer
Michael is a writer that helps organizations align their mission and values to a wide audience.

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