A life of constant traveling is the dream. Exploring the world is not cheap though. You would need a job that lets you travel and earn a living.
But maybe you’re wondering, what if I don’t have enough experience? What if I lack the skills to be location-independent?
Well, my friend, here’s some good news: You don’t need super nomad skills to land a job that’ll pay for your travel fantasies. What you should look for are digital nomad jobs for beginners.
What is a digital nomad?
Digital nomad jobs are some of the best jobs for people who love to travel. As a digital nomad, you can be employed by someone else or self-employed. As long as you have a reliable laptop and a good internet connection, you can work anywhere.
Digital nomad careers involve a lot of traveling. For some, this means working in different countries every few months, working in cafés or co-working spaces, or even working onboard an RV.
Can you become a digital nomad with no experience or no skills?
Many people dream of this lifestyle but are often held back by their lack of experience. If you’re wondering if you need skills or experience to become a digital nomad, the answer is yes. But you don’t need a lot of skills or years of experience.
Digital nomad jobs for beginners, as you’ll see later, are just like many other jobs that require low-level skills and/or some degree (no matter how little) of experience.
Skills are something you can acquire after studying — you can enroll in a short class, watch tutorials online, or research the job that you want to take. In some cases, your employer can provide training for you before you officially start working. Ultimately, you don’t start a job blindly.
As for experience, this is relative. You can have years of experience, months, or even days! Experience doesn’t have to be a formal job either. School projects, volunteer gigs, an unpaid task that you carried out for someone else — these can all count as experience if relevant to the position you’re applying for.
With that out of the way, let’s look at some of the entry-level digital nomad jobs out there.
Best digital nomad jobs for beginners
1. Freelance writer
This is one of the best digital nomad jobs for beginners. I know because I am a freelance writer and I was once a beginner.
If you can string words together and are willing to put in the hours, there are so many opportunities for you online. You can be a content writer like me, a copywriter (e.g., writing sales copy for websites, products, or social media ads), an e-book writer, or even a speechwriter.
You don’t need formal writing experience to start a freelance writing career. But you do need some writing samples to prove that you have the skills. Some employers will require that you take a writing test, too.
What about blogging, you ask? Yes, you can earn money from blogging (we even have a step-by-step guide for starting a travel blog) but I don’t recommend this for new digital nomads who want to earn money fast.
If anything, starting a blog will require shelling out money. You can consider this route once you have enough experience, technical know-how, and income that can sustain you even if you don’t earn from blogging fast enough.
2. Freelance editor and proofreader
Alternatively, you can delve into editing or proofreading. This is a great digital nomad job if you love reading, have some writing experience, but don’t actually like writing from scratch.
There are loads of content for a freelance editor or proofreader to work on, such as web content, book manuscripts, legal documents, technical manuals, scripts, academic journals, and more. Some may include simply proofreading for grammar and spelling, while other jobs require heavy editing.
You may or may not need a degree for this kind of job but beginners have a chance at making money out of proofreading. As long as you can prove that you know your grammar, have a keen eye for detail, and can adapt to any style guide that your client follows, you can make a good earning for this job.
3. Social media manager
Know your way around Facebook? How about Instagram reels and TikTok? If you don’t mind scrolling through social media feeds for hours on end, you might as well earn from it, right?
Tasks often include growing the business’ follower base, answering comments and queries, writing and designing posts, conceptualizing ad campaigns, making and analyzing reports, and more.
As you can guess, this job requires varying degrees of marketing, administrative, and analytical skills, plus writing and design skills if you’re also creating the posts.
Some clients may need you to be on top of the whole social media strategy, while others only need you to schedule posts on certain platforms and monitor engagement. I suggest gaining as many skills as possible so that you can diversify the services that you can offer. Knowing how to create ads and video content is a huge plus and can help you land bigger clients.
Sites like Fiverr, Upwork, and FlexJobs are great for finding social media management jobs.
But, fittingly, you can also find many social media-related jobs on social media sites! LinkedIn is a top source, but so are Facebook Marketplace and Facebook Groups. Sometimes, brands themselves post openings on their official social media accounts.
4. Virtual assistant
Virtual assistant jobs are among the best remote jobs for beginners. For one, they require little to no experience and for another, it’s a great stepping stone for other digital nomad jobs.
A virtual assistant mainly does administrative tasks like answering emails, making travel arrangements, organizing files, scheduling meetings, and data entry. But some clients also hire VAs to schedule social media posts, help with research, or create simple graphics.
As a VA, you have to be a good communicator, detail-oriented, have a good grasp of computer applications, and have great organizational and time management skills. If you think you have all of these, you can search for virtual assistant jobs on Freelancer.com, Upwork, Fiverr, and PeoplePerHour.
5. Language teacher
Teaching a language is one of the easiest digital nomad jobs for beginners because it only requires a skill that you already have: the language you speak.
Teaching English is the most common route for digital nomads, as many sites allow you to teach English online even without a degree. Some require certifications like TESL, TEFL, or TESOL, while others simply just look for native speakers.
There are also plenty of sites where you can teach various languages besides English so if you’re bilingual, you have more options.
6. Online tutoring
Along the same vein, if you’re into teaching but don’t necessarily want to teach languages, you can teach other subjects you know. Having a relevant degree or experience would be advantageous but even beginners can make good money from this.
If you have skills you might want to share with others, and you have a passion for teaching, you can check out sites like Preply, TutorMe, and VarsityTutors. These sites hire tutors for just about any subject, from mathematics to art to photography. TakeLessons even has tutors for music, cooking, and knitting!
Many of these platforms offer flexible schedules and good pay, allowing you to travel in your free time and have the income to support your travel whims.
Can you type like nobody’s business and have a good ear, why not have a go at transcribing? Often, you simply have to pass a test (or a series of tests) to become a transcriptionist, making it one of the best digital nomad jobs for beginners.
As a transcriptionist, you’ll be tasked to listen to audio (sometimes video) content and transcribe what you hear. You’ll need a laptop, a good pair of earphones, speedy typing skills, and an ear that can decipher words despite varying accents, stuttering, and even bad-quality audio.
8. Online translator
Are you fluent in two or more languages? Like teaching languages, online translation jobs are one of the best digital nomad jobs for beginners because they often don’t require years of experience.
Human translation is still in demand because machine translation can’t interpret abstract concepts, cultural context, nuance, and tone. And so, aside from a mastery of multiple languages, you have to have an understanding of cultures relevant to these languages.
Online translation work often refers to written content, which may be in the form of web content, entire books, blog posts, product manuals, or even legal documents.
9. Phone mystery shopper
The first time I heard of this job, it sounded like something made up. But this job does exist and there are lots of people who make money from it.
Phone mystery shoppers are hired to call businesses and establishments to check the quality of their customer service departments objectively. Sometimes, they’re tasked by a company to call their competitors as part of their competitor research and analysis.
As a phone mystery shopper, you’ll be given a set of questions to ask and things to look for. There are no sales involved but you may be asked to make a high volume of calls in a short period and make unbiased, clear reports about your experience.
10. Customer service representative
Many years ago (don’t ask when), I worked as a customer service representative. At the time, “call center agents” mostly worked in offices. But now, many customer service roles are open to people who prefer working from home or anywhere with a good internet connection.
Customer service representatives are one of the most in-demand digital nomad jobs. Companies outsource jobs in high volumes, meaning there’s high demand all the time. Customer service representatives may handle customer calls or answer queries via email or chat.
The job often doesn’t require any experience. You simply have to pass an assessment and show good communication and problem-solving skills. Afterward, you’ll undergo training, which may last for days to weeks.
11. Data entry
Data entry or encoding may not sound like a particularly exciting job but it pays the bills and often offers flexible hours. For aspiring digital nomads, that’s enough to start with.
Data entry jobs may require knowledge in certain areas but general positions simply need you to be familiar with Excel, Google Sheet, or other similar spreadsheet and database software. Attention to detail is important, as well as accurate and fast typing skills.
This job may include processing and organizing customer data, inventory and pricing, or scientific data. You can find data entry jobs on sites like Fiverr, Upwork, and FlexJobs.
12. Freelance photographer
Photography is one hobby that you can monetize and do from anywhere in the world. Here, traveling can be an advantage as it’ll allow you to take photos of different sites around the world.
While new photographers have a chance to turn their hobby into a lucrative career, this is one of those jobs that require skills and a bit of experience. Don’t let that discourage you though — you can hone your skills by practicing on various subjects from products to events to natural landscapes.
Honing your craft also means you get to beef up your portfolio. You can choose the best photos from your collection and sell them to stock photography sites like Shutterstock, iStock, and EyeEm. You can also transform your photos into prints, shirt or bag designs, or for use in other merch.
13. Taking online surveys
Answering online surveys will not turn you into a millionaire overnight nor is it a dependable source of income. But it’s one of the best digital nomad jobs for beginners who are still determining long-term career plans.
Some sites require that you accumulate a certain number of surveys before you’re able to redeem your earnings. But there are almost no skills or experience required here and you can easily pair it with other jobs to get a more substantial income.
14. Video producer or editor
Video-related jobs are among the best digital nomad jobs. They’re in demand and you can take on these jobs from anywhere in the world.
If you’re not camera-shy, you can become a video creator and talk about anything that interests you. You can’t count on becoming a millionaire like some popular YouTubers but it’s a great way to turn a hobby into something income-generating.
Alternately, you can master your editing skills and get freelance gigs for people who need to cut and put together their recordings.
15. Graphic designer or illustrator
Got a good eye for design? How about drawing skills? Then this job’s for you.
Similar to freelance writing or photography, having a natural inclination to design and art helps. But it doesn’t mean you can’t land jobs as a beginner. You just need to develop your craft and at the same time, market yourself better.
16. Web programmer
Programming is evidently a technical job that’s not for everyone. But it’s still one of the best digital nomad jobs for beginners for a couple of reasons.
Secondly, there are countless remote programming job openings every single day. And because they require technical expertise, these jobs often pay well.
You may check Upwork, Indeed, and Glassdoor for available web programming jobs. this may include working on websites, mobile applications, or software.
17. Website tester
Building websites is an expensive endeavor and companies want to ensure that the website they paid for meets their goals. And that’s why they need people to test their websites.
Website testers are like phone mystery shoppers, in that they assess a client’s asset (in this case, the company website) to make sure that it runs smoothly and is user-friendly before and after they’re launched.
18. Voice acting jobs
Do you have a voice that earns compliments? Can you enunciate well and speak with emotions? Read on.
Voice acting may sound intimidating and you may think only those who dub Disney animations are the only ones who can make their way to the top. While it’s certainly not an easy job (it requires a lot of dedication and practice), there are plenty of opportunities for budding voice actors.
Voice acting isn’t reserved for animated films. On sites like Voices and Voice123, clients look for voice-over talent for a variety of content — documentaries, radio and TV ads, audiobooks, podcasts, video games, and more!
19. Convert your current job into a remote job
Suppose you’re currently employed and like what you’re doing but want to start a career as a digital nomad. You can if you can negotiate with your boss.
Many employers and employees started taking this route when the global pandemic struck and quarantines had to be in place. And in many cases, businesses and employees thrived in the work-from-home setup.
If this is something that’s in place for you now, take advantage and squeeze in vacations when you can. Otherwise, you can discuss it with your boss. Start by proposing a trial run first and ask if you can work from home once a week.
That’s what I did a few years ago in my previous job (which is also why it wasn’t hard for me to adjust when we all had to stay home due to lockdowns). That once-a-week WFH setup turned into a more permanent arrangement later on as I was able to prove that I can still be productive remotely.
If this is not at all possible, you can try your luck and look for remote jobs on FlexJobs, Dynamite Jobs, and Indeed.
20. Drop servicer
Didn’t find your dream job from the ones listed above? Maybe instead of being a freelancer yourself, you’re better off managing freelancers?
Drop servicing is essentially being an agency for freelancers. It involves selling services (e.g., writing, graphic design, accounting) produced by a third party (a freelancer) to your clients. You deliver services to your clients without getting your hands dirty with execution.
In a drop servicing business, you will charge your client with rates that are higher than what the freelancer you hired charged you. You earn by pocketing the difference.
When done right, it’s a rewarding business model and can certainly fund your digital nomadic lifestyle.
You don’t have to be necessarily skilled in particular fields to start a drop servicing business, as you only need to act as the middle man. But you have to build a reliable pool of online service providers or freelancers who can meet your prospective clients’ needs.
Some tips on how to succeed as a digital nomad
You now have a clearer picture of the opportunities available to you. But you might be still wondering about how to thrive as a digital nomad. Here are a few tips:
Know where to find jobs
Fiverr, Upwork, FlexJobs — I’ve mentioned these sites several times in this article. But aside from online job boards, you can also tap your network for jobs. This means chatting up some friends and asking for referrals.
This also includes marketing yourself and telling people what you can do so that when they encounter opportunities online that might be relevant to what you do, they’ll remember you and send the job your way.
Develop good working relationships
A critical part of your success as a freelancer or remote worker is your ability to foster healthy working relationships with other people.
For one, you have to make sure that you’re delivering quality work every. single. time. Providing excellent service is the surest way to establish yourself as a reliable worker. Happy clients are highly likely to recommend you to others, too.
Communication skills are also key — you have to understand what your client needs as well as clearly communicate what you can or cannot deliver.
Having great communication skills also come in handy when you have to negotiate some aspects of a project, whether it’s the timeline, scope, or pricing.
Manage your time wisely
Good service also includes being on time, especially if you’re working on a project that has a deadline.
Productivity and project management apps like Asana, Trello, and Notion can help you manage your time, especially if you’re working on multiple projects.
Learn more skills
While the jobs listed above are beginner-friendly, it doesn’t hurt to acquire new skills or improve on the ones you already have.
Some of the most useful skills for digital nomads include:
- Social media marketing
- Graphic design
- Video editing
- Basic coding
- Affiliate marketing
Know that it won’t always be fun
The lifestyle of digital nomads and remote workers offers a degree of flexibility and freedom that others only dream of. It is fun, especially when you’re earning enough to travel to anywhere you wish to.
But that’s not always the case, especially when you’re just starting. It won’t always be fun and like I said in this article about traveling jobs, jobs that allow you to travel are still… jobs.
They still demand time, patience, and commitment. Plus, when you’re a beginner, jobs aren’t always assured so you’ll have to work harder at getting a steady base of clients.
Setting realistic expectations and goals is critical if you want to be a long-term digital nomad. No one gets to a comfortable stage overnight and you have to be okay with that.
The life of a digital nomad is not for everyone but it’s rewarding for people who’ve managed to strike the balance between a life of adventure and a job that’s fulfilling.
If this list of digital nomad jobs for beginners managed to achieve anything, I hope it’s that it encouraged you to explore location-independent opportunities and remind you that your inexperience should not hold you back from this lifestyle.