23+ Digital Nomads Statistics, Facts & Trends [2024]

December 18, 2023 0 Comments

Did you know there were about 35 million digital nomads all over the world?

That’s 0.4% out of 7.8 billion people to date!

According to the data, 37% of them are Millennials who are happily earning at least $100k/yr while traveling the world.

Picture them working remotely from a beach with a cocktail in hand, soaking up the sun.

Now if that isn’t the dream lifestyle – talk about having your piña colada and drinking it too!

Here are some interesting statistics about the digital nomads:

Top Digital Nomads Statistics: Editor’s Pick

  1. There were about 35 million digital nomads globally. [1]
  2. 74.5% of digital nomads were influenced by the pandemic. [2]
  3. 59% of digital nomads are either married or in a partnership. [2]
  4. 21% of digital nomads are GenZ. [3]
  5. According to a report the oldest digital nomad was 72 years old. [4]
  6. 50% of digital nomads are men. [4]
  7. 34% of digital nomads favor Southeast Asia. [4]
mexico ranks first among digital nomad destinations

What is a Digital Nomad?

Did you know that one of the first digital nomads recorded in history is a guy named Steven K. Roberts?

In 1983, Roberts traveled 10,000 miles across America while working on a tech-equipped recumbent bike.

He finishes his job during the day, then sets up a camp before sundown.

But what exactly defines a Digital Nomad?

Digital nomads use tech and remote work, allowing them to settle into their work routines while migrating from place to place.

Currently, there are about 17 million of them in the United States.

More on these statistics below.

By Demographics

We’ve listed down various categories such as age, gender, and race to identify who 

composes the digital nomads.

Here’s what we discovered:

37% of digital nomads are Millennials [3]

MBO Partners found the following generational breakdown amongst the digital nomad community:

generation of digital nomads

By Ethnicity

  • 76% of digital nomads are white, 10% Hispanic, 8% Asian, and 6% black [4]
  • While 31% are US citizens [4]

By Age

  • The average digital nomad age is 40, but most (47%) are in their 30s [4]
  • The oldest reported was 72 [4]

Digital nomads are predominantly male

The digital nomad community is 50.19% male and 49.81% female. [4]

Over 59% of digital nomads are either married or in a partnership

Per a SafetyWing survey, 58.8% of digital nomads are married/partnered and 48.3% have minor children. [2]

Where Do They Work?

A study by A Brother Abroad found 23% of digital nomads prefer to work remotely from home when traveling instead of an office.

Comparatively, 21% primarily use coworking spaces.

More insights to this.

On work environment

digital nomads prioritize safety

A Global Digital Nomad study found:

  • 23% of digital nomads primarily work from home/accommodations [4]
  • 21% at coworking spaces and 14% in cafes
  • 6% use libraries
  • Most cite needing a space with others at least weekly for mental/social health 
  • 56% of digital nomads choose locations based mainly on low cost of living and fast internet access
  • 15% prioritize safety, 11% nature access, 9% nomad-friendly visas, and 3% cafe/coworking culture [4]
southeast Asia top choice for digital nomads

Top nomad spots are affordable, well-connected coastal gateways with lower incomes than average nomad budgets. [4]

Mexico ranked #1 (13% of votes) among digital nomad destinations, followed by Thailand (12%), Indonesia (9%), Colombia (7%), and Vietnam (5%).

Portugal emerged as the leading digital nomad location in Western Europe.

Turkey was regarded as the top digital nomad destination in the Middle East.

Croatia was rated as the top location in the Balkans and Eastern Europe.

South Africa stood out as the preferred destination for digital nomads in Africa.

Southeast Asia was the most favored region among digital nomads, securing 34% of the votes, followed by Central America (16%) and South America (13%). [4]

What Are Their Jobs?

83% of digital nomads are self-employed

Here’s what we found:

  • 83% self-employed while 17% work remotely for companies
  • 66% are business owners while 34% work freelance or in gigs
  • Top professions are marketing, IT, design, writing, eCommerce (51%)
  • 14% work in uncommon fields like architecture, law, and engineering [4]

Most digital nomads are full time workers

42% of digital nomads are working full-time, while 17% are freelance. [6]

Here’s the full list of the types of employment nomads categorize:

Employment typePercentage
Full time42%
Freelance17%
Startup founder16%
Full time contractor9%
Agency8%
Other5%
Part time2%
Part time contractor2%

Most males are in Software Development [6]

According to the Nomad List, 34% of men are working in Software Development.

15% of women work in Marketing and Creative [6]

The most popular job categories among female digital nomads are in the fields of creative work and marketing, each accounting for 15% of all respondents.

How Much Are They Earning?

Can the life of a digital nomad really pay the bills?

Surprisingly, yes.

On average, a digital nomad earns around $50,000 per year.

However, some of the top nomads bring in over $1M annually.

With companies shifting towards remote work, digital nomads now have their pick of high-paying jobs they can perform from wherever their travels take them next.

The numbers show the modern nomadic lifestyle isn’t just exciting, but profitable too.

Digital nomads typically earn between $50k to $99k yearly [7]

The consensus from FlexJobs poll, CDC International Shipping statistics, and findings by Project Untethered indicates that digital nomads typically earn between $50,000 and $99,999 annually.

These statistics also reveal that the majority of remote workers earn hourly rates ranging between $10 and $30.

The specific pay range often depends on their qualifications, experience, and the industry they work in. [7]

the top 2% of digital nomads earn more than $1M a year

The Nomad List reports, the median salary for digital nomads is $85k/yr

According to the Nomad List, the average income of digital nomads is over $122,000 annually, while the median earns $85,000 yearly. 

However, the top earners can make as much as $1 million. [6]

Here’s a breakdown of their income ranges:

Digital Nomads IncomePercentage
Less than $25k per year6%
$25k – $50k per year15%
$50k – $100k per year34%
$100k – $250k per year35%
Greater than $250k – $1M per year8%
Greater than $1M per year2%

Why Do They Choose A Nomadic Lifestyle?

SafetyWing conducted a survey with 550 respondents, including 250 office workers, 250 remote workers, and 50 digital nomads, offering insights into location-independent work and nomadic lifestyle trends.

The survey found:

  • 74.5% of digital nomads were influenced by the pandemic [2]
  • 90% expressed interest in remote work or nomadism
  • 78.3% cited the cost of living as a factor
  • 93% reported higher satisfaction, and 90% reported increased productivity
  • 61% reported lower stress levels, while 44% noted improved mental health [2]
  • 79% expressed optimism about their career [3]
  • 70% were individuals with children who expressed a desire to work while traveling with them [2]

Challenges of Being a Digital Nomad

While digital nomads enjoy the benefits of flexibility and time, this lifestyle comes with its own set of challenges.

34% of digital nomads expressed concerns about their personal safety

According to the report from MBO, the statistics reflect these challenges:

  • 34% expressed concerns about their personal safety [8]
  • 32% were concerned about being distanced from family and friends
  • 30% faced difficulties in managing work due to time zone differences
  • 26% suffered from loneliness
  • 25% struggled with travel logistics and the dual task of managing work alongside their travels [8]

FAQs about Digital Nomads

How many digital nomads are there?

There are approximately 35 million digital nomads globally, making up 0.4% of the world’s population.

What jobs do most digital nomads have?

83% of digital nomads are self-employed, with 66% owning their own online businesses. Top professions include marketing, IT, design, writing, and ecommerce, comprising 51% of nomads.

How much money do digital nomads make?

The typical digital nomad income ranges from $50,000 to $99,999 yearly. However, median earnings are $85,000 annually. 

Where do most digital nomads work and travel?

34% of nomads ranked Southeast Asia as their top destination region, followed by Central America (16%) and South America (13%). Mexico and Thailand tied as the #1 country destinations.

Why choose the nomadic lifestyle?

74.5% were influenced by the COVID-19 pandemic to work remotely while traveling. Key motives include lower cost of living (78.3%), higher satisfaction (93%), and optimism about their career (79%).

Summary

Nearly 75% were inspired by the pandemic’s work-from-anywhere model.

Enabled by technology, millions are embracing the digital nomad lifestyle – working remotely while traveling full-time.

Millennials and families are leading this trend, signaling a global embrace of flexible, on-the-go lifestyles.

As more people experience benefits firsthand, the nomadic lifestyle promises to fundamentally transform modern work.

For further intriguing statistics, facts and trends, we invite you to explore our website.

Sources

  1. Demand Sage. 49 Digital Nomads Statistics (Trends & Insights for 2023)
  2. Forbes. The Great Reevaluation: How Remote Work And Digital Nomads Are Reshaping The Future Of Work
  3. MBO Partners. Digital Nomads Nomadism Enters the Mainstream
  4. A Brother Abroad. 63 Surprising Digital Nomad Statistics [Analysis Updated for 2023]
  5. Research Gate. The History of Digital Nomadism
  6. Nomad List. The 2024 State of Digital Nomads
  7. Citizen Remote. How Much Do Digital Nomads Make? – Average Salary
  8. MBO Partners. Working from the Road:  The Aspirations and Reality for Digital Nomads