Best Countries for Remote Work

working remotely

Embracing Life as a Remote Worker: The Journey Begins

The COVID-19 pandemic and the shift to work remotely has brought about a new breed of professionals: digital nomads.

These remote workers use their laptop to work for a company in the U.S while lounging on a beach in Bali. They have the freedom to live and work from anywhere in the world.

But with 196 countries in the world, how do you choose the best one for you? There’s no one-size-fits-all answer, but this guide will help you find your ideal destination.

Working Remotely Visa

The Criteria for Deciding the Best Countries to Work Remotely

When looking for the best place to work remotely, there are a few key factors to consider:

  • Visa: Some countries offer special visas for digital nomads.
  • Cost of Living: Countries with a low cost of living can make your dollars stretch further.
  • Internet Speed: High-quality internet is non-negotiable for remote work.
  • Safety and Security: The political stability of the country is important.
  • Social Life: Co-working spaces, coffee shops, and a vibrant social life category can enhance your experience.

Top 10 Countries for Remote Workers

In no particular order, here are the 10 best countries for remote work.

Remote Work in the Heart of the Mediterranean: Malta

The ancient city Valletta in Malta

The island nation of Malta has become a top spot for digital nomads, allowing workers to stay for a year.

The island of Malta also boasts a high English proficiency, great weather, and a vibrant social scene.

Costa Rica – a Tropical Paradise for Remote Work

Costa Rica Remote Work

Costa Rica is a choice for remote workers who want a taste of the “Pura Vida” lifestyle. The country offers a remote work visa for up to a year. Costa Rica is known for its breathtaking beaches, biodiverse wildlife, and friendly locals.

Bali – a Dream Come True for Remote Workers

Bali Remote Work

Bali, a part of Indonesia, is a dream destination for many remote workers.

Despite not having a specific visa for remote workers, you can stay in the country on a 6-month tourist visa.

It offers a low cost of living, high-speed internet, and a thriving community of digital nomads.

Barbados – the Gem of the Caribbean

Barbados Work Remotely

This island nation offers a digital nomad visa called the “Barbados Welcome Stamp”, which allows remote workers to stay for up to a year.

With its stunning beaches, excellent internet infrastructure, and high standard of living, Barbados is sure to charm you.

Lisbon, Portugal – A European Haven for Freelancers and Digital Nomads

Lisbon, remote work

Lisbon, with its historical charm and modern amenities, has been attracting remote workers from around the globe.

Portugal offers a remote work visa known as the D7 Passive Income Visa. The city has plenty of co-working spaces and a high-speed Wi-Fi network.

Germany – the Digital Nomad’s Dream

Remote Work Germany

Germany’s cosmopolitan cities, like Berlin and Munich, are known for their rich history, vibrant culture, and a thriving community of digital nomads.

The country offers a freelancer visa, designed for self-employed individuals and freelancers, making it an excellent country for working remotely.

Its high-quality internet, safety and security, and lively social life make it a top choice for remote workers.

Taiwan – a Blend of Eastern and Western Cultures

Remote work Taiwan

Taiwan, an island nation located in East Asia, is becoming a popular destination for remote workers. The country is known for its bustling cities, breathtaking landscapes, and delicious street food.

It offers a visa for remote workers, allowing them to stay for up to a year. With high-speed internet, low-cost living, and a high score in safety and security, Taiwan stands as a compelling choice for remote workers.

Estonia – a Digital Nomad’s Paradise

Estonia Work Remotely

Estonia was one of the first countries to introduce a digital nomad visa, attracting remote workers from across the globe.

With its beautiful landscapes, high-speed internet, and the ease of setting up shop, Estonia is a desirable place to live and work for remote workers.

Thailand – The Land of Smiles

Work Remotely Thailand

Thailand, known as the “Land of Smiles,” is a beloved destination among people who would like to be free to work from wherever they’d like. Its beautiful beaches, vibrant cities like Bangkok and Chiang Mai, and a low cost of living make it a popular choice.

While Thailand doesn’t offer a specific digital nomad visa, its tourist visa allows for stays up to 6 months, and many cities have co-working spaces where you can meet other people that are location independent.

Spain – The Digital Nomad Hub

Spain Work Remotely

Spain, particularly its city Barcelona, has been attracting location independent workers for years. The country offers a self-employment work visa, which is an excellent option for remote workers.

With its rich culture, excellent cuisine, sunny weather, and high-speed internet, Spain is an ideal country to live and work remotely.

Top 10 Countries for Remote Workers Side-by-Side

CountryDigital Nomad VisaCost of LivingInternet SpeedSafety
Bali, IndonesiaNot specific, but offers long-term tourist visaLowHighModerate
Costa RicaNo, but offers a renewable 90-day tourist visaModerateModerateHigh
BarbadosYes, 12-month Barbados Welcome StampHighHighHigh
MaltaYes, Nomad Residence PermitHighHighHigh
Lisbon, PortugalNo, but has friendly immigration policiesModerateHighHigh
GermanyYes, Freelancer VisaHighHighHigh
TaiwanYes, Gold Card (work and residence permit)LowHighHigh
EstoniaYes, Digital Nomad VisaModerateHighHigh
ThailandNo, but offers 6-month tourist visaLowHighModerate
SpainYes, Self-employment work visaModerateHighHigh
Best Countries for Remote Work
Best Countries for Remote Work

The Challenges, and how to overcome them

As a digital nomad, you may face challenges like cultural adjustments, time zone differences, unstable internet connection, and feeling isolated.

To overcome these:

  • Cultural Adjustment: Research and learn about the country’s customs, norms, and language before your move. Be open and respectful to the local culture.
  • Time Zone Differences: Communicate your working hours to your team and find a balance that works for everyone. Utilize scheduling tools to manage meetings across different time zones.
  • Unstable Internet Connection: Always have a backup plan such as a local SIM card for hotspot or co-working spaces. Research the internet infrastructure of the country beforehand.
  • Feeling Isolated: Join local clubs or networking events, participate in co-working spaces, and keep regular contact with friends and family back home.

Making Your Move: How to Prepare for Working Remotely Abroad

Prepare Working Remotely

When you’ve found your ideal country for remote work, it’s time to prepare for your move. Here’s a quick checklist:

  • Make sure you understand the visa process and requirements.
  • Research the cost of living and plan your budget accordingly.
  • Make a plan for staying connected, both digitally and physically.

Conclusion: Choosing Your Ideal Destination to Work Remotely

The world is full of amazing places for remote workers. Whether you prefer the tranquil beaches of Costa Rica or the vibrant city life of Lisbon, you’re sure to find the perfect destination to suit your remote work lifestyle.

But remember, the best countries for remote workers offer more than just a change of scenery. They provide the right economic and social conditions, digital and physical infrastructure, and a community that will make you feel right at home.


What is a digital nomad visa?

A digital nomad visa is a type of work visa that countries offer to attract remote workers. It allows you to legally live and work in a country for a specified period, typically one year. The visa for remote workers usually requires proof of employment or sufficient income.

How can I maintain a good work-life balance while working remotely abroad?

Maintaining a work-life balance while working remotely abroad involves setting a strict work schedule, taking regular breaks, and making time for leisure activities. It’s also important to make social connections and explore your new surroundings.

How do I deal with time zone differences when working remotely for a company based in another country?

Dealing with time zone differences can be challenging. You may need to adjust your work hours to align with your team’s schedule. Tools like Zoom and Slack can help you stay connected with your team.

What are the best remote working tools for digital nomads?

Essential remote working tools for digital nomads include a reliable laptop, a virtual private network (VPN), project management software, and video conferencing tools. A good pair of headphones can also be beneficial.

Can I travel to different countries while working remotely, or do I have to stay in one place?

As a digital nomad, you’re not bound to one location—you can work from anywhere. However, it’s important to consider the visa requirements, cost of living, and internet connectivity of the countries you intend to visit. Also, constantly moving can be disruptive to your work routine, so many digital nomads choose to stay in one place for an extended period before moving on.

What type of jobs are suitable for becoming a digital nomad?

Any job that can be done remotely with just a laptop and a stable internet connection is suitable for a digital nomad. This can include roles in fields such as programming, graphic design, digital marketing, writing, consulting, teaching, and more. Freelancers, entrepreneurs, and remote employees can all successfully work as digital nomads.