Are you planning to become a digital nomad and explore the beautiful world while working remotely? If so, packing for your journey can be a daunting task. There's so much to consider, from the essentials you'll need for your work to the clothing and gear you'll need for your travels.
To help make your packing process a little easier, we've compiled a list of the ultimate digital nomad packing essentials. Most of them we use. Whether planning a short-term or longer journey, this list will help you pack everything you need to stay productive and comfortable on the road.
We are traveling entrepreneurs without a permanent home, and we usually change apartments every few weeks. We did thorough research and carefully selected our tools and belongings, considering that we need sleek, comfortable, quality belongings and all the required tools and services to keep our digital office up and running.
We'll keep this article live and add more things on the go, so make sure you bookmark it if you are a fellow digital nomad, traveler, or in any way in a remote workspace. Or even if you are looking for tools to make your life easier and improve productivity.
We divided the tools and products into categories to make a list easier to navigate:
➡️ The Best Travel gear
➡️ The Best Hardware
➡️ The Best Website Tools
➡️ The Best Apps to Manage Finances
➡️ The Best Remote Office Management Tools
➡️ The Best Productivity Tools
➡️ The Best Automation Tools
➡️ The Best Marketing Tools
➡️ The Best Communication Tools
➡️ The Best Security Tools
➡️ The Best Communication Tools
Let's jump right into it!
The Best Travel Gear
We packed our life in one shared check-in luggage, each one a separate backpack for clothes and a computer back for electronics.
You should research the best equipment that you need and is comfortable to carry. You should invest money in suitable quality backpacks or luggage, as this will be your gear, and it should be comfortable and spacious.
Here are our recommendations for travel equipment that we use:
Inateck backpack is my great companion on travels. Very comfortable and spacious, with a sturdy design. The main compartment is spacious and opens like hard luggage, so it's easy to pack all the clothes. I carry all my clothes and a couple of additional belongings in, and it has a carry-on size, so it easily fits the overhead compartment on the plane.
PinqPonq Komut Medium
PinqPonq is a German company that produces apparel and bags with fabrics made from 100% recycled PET bottles. PinqPonq Komut is very spacious and has great compartments. Also recommended if you are carrying a camera and other electronics.
Ozuko is Leo’s backpack of choice. It’s very durable, zippers are great quality and very comfortable to carry. The size is perfect for carry-on and spacious enough to fit all the clothes and some accessories.
Check-in luggage SAMSONITE Paradiver Light Travel bag with wheels
We are using one shared check-in luggage, and after testing two no-name hard shell luggage, we decided to try Samsonite Paradiver with a soft shell, and we are super happy with it. It's light, well-made, and durable. It is easy to wheel it around, making the journey comfortable.
It's very spacious, and due to its soft material, you can always squeeze some extra items when packing.
Pacsafe Travelsafe X25 Portable Lock Box 25 Liter Stainless Steel
We are carrying all our important belongings with us, and to keep them safe, we purchased Pacsafe Travelsafe. It only takes up a little space in our luggage, like a more sturdy bag. To use it, you need a fixed place to attach it so nobody can remove it. We usually use the frame of the bed.
This is especially great for the ones who stay in hostels and places where somebody else might access your belongings, like when going to the beach.
The Best Hardware for Digital Nomads
With hardware, you should ensure a reliable computer, phone, and other electronics with enough space and sleek enough to carry. Your work depends on it, and you should be able to do your job fast and efficiently.
You need a reliable laptop with enough space and sleek enough to carry. In addition, you don't want to visit the service all the time, as the laptop is your primary tool for everyday work.
We both have MacBooks 13" M1, Leo has the Macbook Pro, and I have Macbook Air.
MacBook is our preferred choice because it's small, lightweight, very compact, and powerful, especially the new M1 and M2; it has a very long battery life and service for a few years.
Check the prices and the models here.
iPhone 11 Pro and 13 Pro
Like laptops, we are a team: Apple regarding our phones. We have iPhones for similar reasons as our laptops. They work seamlessly, and even if the price tag on Apple devices is a bit higher, they are worth it.
We have iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 13 Pro.
We use headphones every day. Especially when working in a coffee shop full of people and noise, you need to disconnect, go to your tunnel, and focus on your work. Not just that, you need them for the calls as well.
Also, when working at home, we both like to dive deeply into work while listening to our fav music. We both use Airpods Pro.
Video Recorder DJI Pocket 1
The name tells it all - you can easily carry it in your pocket. And when permanently traveling, the size of your tool does matter. DJI Pocket 1 is a tiny camera with a movement stabilizer and active track function that makes excellent videos and photos.
We mainly use it when walking around new cities and neighborhoods to capture the vibe and energy of the city.
Hard drive Lacie 2TB USB-C USB 3.0
Before starting with perpetual traveling, we scanned all important documents and saved them on our hard drives. The hard drive carries a lot of essential data, so you should research before buying it, invest more, and ensure you get good quality.
I purchased Lacie 2TB, and I'm very satisfied with it. Leo has a couple, but he recently purchased Lacie, too.
Mobile Router NETGEAR Nighthawk MR2100
Access to the internet is crucial for our work. Therefore, we usually choose apartments with high-speed internet in more central locations to ensure a stable connection.
However, we may end up in more remote places where the connection could be better or in Airbnb, where you get bad news when checking in. For this case, we are carrying a mobile router NETGEAR Nighthawk MR2100. This way; we can use any local sim card and restore the lost connection when necessary.
Anker is producing one of the best and most powerful power banks. Leo is using model Powercore 20100 and is (still) very satisfied. It's a bit older, but you can select from the newest ones that enable you to charge your devices up to XX with one charge.
Smart Watch Fitbit Versa
We both use Fitbit Smartwatches, Leo has Fit Bit Versa 3, and I have Fitbit Versa 2. I have an older model, but it still works great, and the battery lasts a few days. In everyday usage, up to 6 days sometimes.
This was one of the leading buying factors, as compared to Apple watches, you have to charge almost daily, and you don't need to think about charging Fitbit all the time. Fitbit Versa 4 is on the market, but the difference and new features are not a game changer for us, so we'll stay with our current models.
You can check the models here.
Kindle is an excellent e-reader for digital nomads, especially if you are a bookworm. The best advantage of Kindle is that it's lightweight and perfect for carrying around, and the battery life lasts incredibly long.
You can select from different models, depending on the size and storage you need.
The Best Website Tools for Digital Nomads
Depending on your remote work or business, you must equip your toolbelt with essential website tools. You will need them if you are building your website for blogging, selling products, offering services, or any other business you are going into.
Here are our favorite services for website building:
Webflow is a website building and hosting service that helps you build websites without code. Similar to more generally known WordPress, but with some significant differences with more design freedom, on-page edits, etc.
Our site weirdo.rocks is built on Webflow. Compared to WordPress, Webflow is more expensive than WordPress, which is free, and you need to pay for your hosting.
Speaking of WordPress, we can't go past mentioning Elementor, an easy-to-use drag-and-drop WordPress page builder.
Due to its responsive design, numerous content elements, templates, and convenience, it is one of the most popular and widely used page builders.
You will need a hosting service when building your website. Siteground is one of the most recommended ones from WordPress. They are known to be an extremely reliable and fast hosting service.
They have data centers on three continents, and you can choose your preferred location during signup.
Another hosting provider is Hostinger. They offer more affordable plans and speedy and reliable service. Weirdo.rocks is hosted on Hostinger.
It's a great option if you have a new site and want a reliable hosting service for an affordable price. You can also easily scale your high-traffic site without needing to switch providers. You can start with their basic plan and upgrade to a higher tier as you grow.
While GoDaddy offers web hosting, too, it is more known for its domain registrar services. They are one of the largest ICANN registrars in the world.
If you are starting your business and want to buy a domain, you can use their domain search tool or domain name generator, which helps you find or fine-tune your website address.
Namecheap is a more affordable alternative to Godaddy. They offer a very reliable hosting service and, for us, one of the top domain registrars for a great price.
Registering a domain gives you free privacy protection, domain name security, full DNS access, great support, and a knowledge base.
I'm using Namecheap, and I'm very satisfied with the service.
The Best Apps to Manage Finances
A big part of being a digital nomad is finding the best banking solution focusing on affordable international transfers, safety, and a good credit card that enables international withdrawals.
Fintech banks, also known as digital or online banks, operate primarily or exclusively through digital channels, such as the internet or mobile apps. They offer many services like traditional banks, such as checking and savings accounts, loans, and investment products. We like them especially, as you can do everything online.
N26 is one of Europe's first fintech (digital) banks. N26 offers smart features that make your banking experience on a mobile phone easy and convenient, like easy top-up, direct debits, affordable international money transfers, instant transfers to other N26 users called MoneyBeam, sub-accounts, etc.
With N26, you get a European BIC and IBAN, supporting Apple Pay and Google Pay.
We use it in our daily life.
Curve card is an excellent choice for everybody who uses a lot of different cards as Curve replaces them all, so you don't need to carry them with you. It offers a great solution, as you can connect them to your Curve and have only one. This is perfect for digital nomads and people traveling a lot.
By connecting your cards under one, you also get a central platform to easily view and track your spending on different payment cards and control your spending better. In addition, it gives you a good overview of your financials in one space.
The Wise, formerly Transferwise, is best for international transfers. Wise converts your money at the actual mid-market exchange rates, so they can keep their foreign currency conversion fees low.
With Wise, you can set up your account in different currencies, sending and receiving money globally and using the Wise Debit Card to withdraw funds in local currency.
Wise is for travelers looking for fast and affordable international money transfers with a low and transparent fee structure. In addition, it is excellent for everybody looking for a card that enables them to withdraw funds in local currency while traveling.
Revolut is a good choice for occasional travelers. The card supports multi-currencies which helps you to exchange your money quickly, in the app, withdrawing from ATM, or via card payments.
Besides prepaid debit cards on different tiers, currency exchanges, international transfers, and easy money transfers between Revolut users, they also offer cryptocurrency exchange (Bitcoin, Ethereum, and 30+ other currencies) and investments in stock and commodities, supporting Google and Apple Pay.
Revolut is for those looking for a convenient way to top up your holiday and travel money and use it abroad with reasonable fees. It's also suitable for those who want to make the first step into crypto trading, as you can buy and sell cryptocurrencies within the app.
The Best Travel Luxury Credit Card
When frequently traveling, selecting a suitable credit or debit card will benefit you. Based on your circumstances and spending, you can decide on a card to help you get the advantages like collecting miles, rewards, cashback, withdrawing money with low fees abroad, memberships, and other benefits.
The Amex Platinum is a premium credit card with a high annual fee but has a lot of luxury benefits for travelers who love to travel conveniently and in style.
You can access extensive benefits like airport lounge access, travel, hotel, shopping credits per year, and other high-value-added services.
For that reason, frequent travelers are willing to pay a higher annual fee to benefit from these premium features.
The Best Credit and Debit cards supporting Crypto
Crypto credit cards offer a convenient way for cryptocurrency holders to use their assets in the real world, as many merchants and businesses do not yet accept cryptocurrency as a form of payment. They also allow users to earn rewards on cryptocurrency purchases, such as cashback or points.
It's important to note that crypto credit cards are not yet widely available, and their terms and fees can vary significantly, so it's important to carefully compare your options and research before choosing a crypto credit card.
Crypto.com is a well-known cryptocurrency exchange and one of the most infiltrated into our everyday life. They offer one of the best crypto mobile apps that you can use for trading a plethora of cryptocurrencies and also a Crypto.com Visa Rewards card.
Crypto.com offers up to 5% cashback (it was up to 8% in the past) on purchases. The cashback percentage highly depends on the staking amount of their native token CRO. There are five Crypto.com card tiers, each offering a different cashback percentage and additional perks.
Crypto.com card is excellent for all who want to go all-in, stake large amounts of their token, and benefit from the premium perks and cashback.
The card can be used worldwide wherever Visa is accepted. However, at the moment, it's available for all EEA Residents.
You will need to have an active Binance account to apply for it. Then, you need to transfer your cryptos from your spot wallet to your funding wallet, and you are ready to go. You receive 8% BNB Cashback on eligible purchases, automatically deposited in your Funding Wallet.
OkCoin is a digital asset exchange that allows users to buy and sell a variety of cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin.
OKCoin offers various services to individual and institutional users, including spot trading, margin trading, and futures trading. It also provides tools and resources for users to track the performance of different cryptocurrencies and make informed investment decisions. With OKCoin, you get highly affordable trading fees and an intuitive design that's great for beginners.
They have two app versions, "pro" and "basic."
The Best Remote Office Management Tools
You must have all the tools necessary to manage your digital office, streamline processes and conveniently collaborate with your team. When traveling around, this is even more important.
Here are a couple of tools that help us to manage and automate our work.
Google Email for Business
Google Email for Business, or G Suite, is a suite of cloud-based productivity tools offered by Google. It includes a range of tools for communication and collaboration, such as Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Drive, and Google Meet, as well as additional tools for managing projects and tasks, such as Google Docs and Sheets and Google Slides.
It's a reliable and effective tool for managing email, scheduling, and other business-related tasks.
Besides hard disk, we also store some documents and photos in cloud storage. We are using the DropBox family plan to easily share and access the data. It's available on all devices and easy to use, so it was a no-brainer to opt for it.
Dropbox is a fast and reliable cloud file-sharing system you can access through any device. It's easy to use, and you can fast share and back up all your files.
Airtable is a cloud-based database platform that allows you to create, organize, and collaborate on various data types, including text, numbers, images, and more. It is like a cross between a spreadsheet and a database, as it offers the flexibility of a spreadsheet with the power of a database.
Overall, Airtable can be a helpful tool for anyone who needs to manage and organize data flexibly and collaboratively. It may benefit businesses or organizations that require a more robust and customizable tool than a traditional spreadsheet.
The free plan includes unlimited databases, 1,200 records per database, 2GB attachment space per base, and a mobile app.
Notion is the application that we use daily. It offers components like notes, databases, performance boards, wikis, calendars, and reminders. It can be used for project management, creating simple sites for small teams or large organizations. You can create your dashboards or use pre-set templates to create your database.
We use it as our primary database for tracking OKRs, content planning and writing, daily habit tracking, storing knowledge databases, time management, and all business-related stuff; basically, it's our external brain. So it's straightforward to use, and on the other hand, it offers a lot of complex possibilities on how you want to store and present your data.
They have an app for Windows/Mac and iOS/Android too.
The Best Productivity Tools for Digital Nomads
We use several tools that boost our productivity, improve the workflow and make our tasks more manageable.
Here are a couple of tools that help us with tasks and productivity.
I'm writing this article in Frase, so I must mention it. Frase is one of the best inventions for producing content. It has many great features that help you reach your audience and improve your writing strategy. And they are constantly adding new features.
It is a multipurpose tool that you can use to create content on the fly. It helps you to analyze your content's performance and optimize your site for Google's algorithm. It's the tool that we use daily, and we recommend it to content producers.
Grammarly is another tool that we use daily. I only send professional emails or publish an article after checking them in Grammarly before.
This app for writers suggests spelling, grammar, and style changes in real time and can even edit for specific genres. Although its paid subscriptions can be expensive, it's worth it if you write a lot for your profession. Great for all whose English is a second language.
Grammarly extension supports many platforms automatically, so you can quickly make the subscription cost worthwhile. But unfortunately, the app or extension doesn't work offline.
Headspace is an easy-to-use mindfulness and meditation app. Great way to clear your head, re-focus, and improve productivity.
It's great for all beginners in the meditation space, as they offer easy-to-follow and comfortable courses and help you to progress gradually. Leo is using it daily as part of the morning routine.
Usually, the meditations are around 10mins long, not over 30mins. So it's a great app to include in your morning routine.
Being focused and productive is one of the most important traits for digital nomads. Pomodone App is our secret weapon for getting things done. It's based on Pomodoro Technique: Set a timer for 25 minutes, work, take a 5-minute break—and repeat the process three more times. After that, take a 15- to 30-minute break.
A simple productivity tool is a small menubar app that helps you focus and improve your productive hours.
Best Automation Tools for Digital Nomads
Many automation tools can be helpful for digital nomads. Here are a few automation tools that may be particularly useful for digital nomads.
Zapier is a cloud-based automation platform allowing you to connect and automate workflows between web apps and services. It will enable users to create "zaps," automated tasks that move data between apps or trigger specific actions based on certain conditions.
For example, you can create a zap that automatically adds new entries to a Google Sheet whenever someone fills out a form on a website or sends a notification to Slack whenever a new email arrives in Gmail.
Zapier is user-friendly and does not require coding knowledge. Work smart, not hard!
IFTTT (If This Then That)
IFTTT is another automation platform that allows you to create automated tasks triggered by certain conditions. For example, as a digital nomad, you might use IFTTT to automatically save new photos from your phone to their cloud storage.
Hootsuite is a social media management tool that helps you schedule and publish content, track analytics, and engage with your followers across multiple social media platforms. This can be useful if you need to manage your social media presence while on the go.
Make, formerly Integromat, is another great automation tool. Similar to Zapier, it helps you to build and automate anything. Without any coding knowledge.
Best Marketing Tools for Digital Nomads
AppSumo is a website where product owners sell their digital products and services to potential buyers. What makes it unique is that the products and services are sold at considerable discounts to attract buyers. You can get lovely subscription deals if you work online, have a team, or need various tools to automate your processes.
Canva helps us create visuals without needing graphic designer skills or inspiration. You can create social media posts, presentations, posters, videos, logos, blog post images, and much more. This makes it a great help, especially when working on your business and looking to save money on design pieces.
With their free plan, you can access many templates and images; if you need more, you can always opt for the paid Canva Pro.
Ocoya is social media scheduler that helps you automate and streamline your content creation workflow.
It helps you manage your content creation process in one place, from scheduling and analytics to collaborator management. It's easy to use and customize to fit your specific needs, and the support team is always available to help with any questions.
Zlappo is also a social media scheduler, but for Twitter only. It helps you schedule threads, retweets, quoted tweets, auto-retweet content, etc.
Tools like this help you to grow your audience and automate processes without needing to do everything manually.
The Best Communication Tools for Digital Nomads
Google Meet / Zoom
Google Meet and Zoom are one of the most know video conferencing apps. They offer a wide range of in-app services like screen sharing, file sharing, meeting recordings, meeting transcripts, chat, virtual backgrounds, etc.
They are a great way to jump on a call quickly with anyone just by sharing a Meet link or creating a room in Zoom.
Teams and organizations primarily use Slack to communicate and collaborate in real-time. It is designed to make it easier for team members to stay connected and communicate with one another when working remotely or on different projects.
It's a great app we use when working with other teams; it works seamlessly. For example, you can quickly jump on a call (called Huddle) with a specific team member or all the members in one channel.
Discord is an excellent multimedia messaging platform popular in tech/gaming and crypto spaces. It gained popularity in the last few years and became one of the to-go tools for the general public.
It's easy and intuitive for anyone to set up chat servers and talk with people via messaging, audio, and video. It's widely used for creating communities in different interest areas.
If you are not yet part of our Discord Community, you can join us here: https://discord.gg/kd4evpGC.
If you are into privacy and protecting your data, then Telegram is a good messaging tool. It allows you to send and receive messages from your contacts without sharing your phone number. They focus on privacy, encryption, and an open-source API.
If you are traveling around Thailand, you should download Line App. It's their primary messaging app.
The Best Security Tools for Digital Nomads
One of the essential tools we use for managing our virtual office is 1Password, a password manager, and a digital vault. One can remember only a certain number of passwords, and being a digital nomad means that the majority of your services are online.
We switched to 1Password a while ago, before using LastPass, and we were not 100% satisfied with it. But so far, 1Password does its job perfectly, keeping our passwords and logins for different accounts, cloud services, and banks protected in one place.
Easy setup and user-friendly, you can sync between multiple devices, and their browser plugin works great.
You need to protect your data when you connect to a different Wi-Fi, primarily to open public Wi-Fi. We are using ExpressVPN and NordVPN, which we purchased when traveling to China. They have a strong firewall, so ExpressVPN helped us access Google and other blocked apps in China. It worked seamlessly then and still does, so this is our must-have service.
It's very stable and easy to use. You can connect multiple devices using the same subscription simultaneously, which works great with almost all streaming services.
Crypto Hardware Wallets
Crypto Hardware wallets are the solution for anyone serious about keeping Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies in a secure place while traveling. Compared to centralized exchanges, hardware wallets (small physical devices) enable you to save and protect your private keys and funds offline.