Remote Work is On the Rise: Here Are the Best Cities for Digital Nomads

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the employment landscape has shifted immensely. Entire industries shut down and people migrated

Remote Work

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the employment landscape has shifted immensely. Entire industries shut down and people migrated from one lifelong career to a new one out of necessity. The way we work has also changed; more people are working from home than ever before, and many of those people will continue to do so even as the world opens up post-pandemic. So if you can work from anywhere, you’re no longer tied to whatever city you moved to for work – the possibilities are endless. But some cities are easier to work remotely from than others. CELEB takes a look at cities around the world that are the best to work remotely from.

Companies Begin Remote Work Options

Work Remote

During the pandemic, businesses were forced to make difficult choices. Some were forced to close down altogether; they had no remote options. However, others were able to adjust to the time and their workforces went remote. People who work from home are often more productive than their in-office counterparts; anecdotally, people are also happier in general. While some remote workers face challenges that make them miss the office space – such as young children or technology challenges – for many, the remote shift was a life-changing improvement that opened up a world of opportunities in both employment and living spaces. 

Some employees are limited by the outrageous expense of childcare, others face health or commute challenges; for some companies, this leaves their best employees just out of reach. Working remotely can bridge that gap. However; some cities are more prepared to handle the remote work ecosystem than others. People are taking advantage of this new revolution in employment options to move to their dream cities and explore the world. Digital platform Nestpick figured out where these so-called digital nomads will find the best opportunities to take advantage of their remote work lifestyle. 

How to Determine the Best Remote Work Cities

Nestpick is an accommodation platform that has seen an influx of users seeking a change of location that better suits their work and lifestyle needs. They analyzed the world’s so-called “most livable” destinations, and compiled a list from best to worst as far as remote work is concerned. Factors taken into consideration include the cost of moving and set-up, whether or not a city offers foreign workers a remote work visa, whether or not a location offers tax deductions and remote work-friendly legislations, how safe and comfortable the cities are, their records on human rights, and whether they’re equitable for minorities, women, LGBTQ community members and other vulnerable people. 

Cost of rent (home and office), percent of vaccinated individuals, healthcare access, pollution, and weather were all also taken into account. 

Nestpick shares, “After evaluating these structural and legislative elements, we turned our attention to the factors which make a city a great place to live, such as access to culture and leisure events both before and during the pandemic, as well as the general weather and levels of air, noise and light pollution.

Finally, since the Covid-19 pandemic continues to impact the livability of many metropolises, we took note of the percentage of the populations that are fully vaccinated in each location, as well as those that had low infection rates.

The resulting ranking offers an overview of the best cities worldwide for those seeking the perfect home base from which to live and work remotely from, as well as those with the potential to attract this new breed of workers in the future.”

And the Best Cities Are…

Melbourne, Australia

The city out of the top 75 most livable cities that ranked lowest in the metrics was Medellin, Colombia. Coming in at number 74 was Marrakesh, Morocco. Shanghai, China, Brussels, Belgium, and Istanbul, Turkey round out the bottom 5. While these cities may indeed be livable, they scored the worst for remote work on metrics like equality, remote work infrastructure, and pollution.  

The top ten cities, on the other hand, from 10 to 1:

  • 10. Berlin, Germany
  • 9. Montreal, Canada
  • 8. Glasgow, UK
  • 7. Singapore, Singapore
  • 6. Tokyo, Japan 
  • 5. London, UK
  • 4. Tallin, Estonia
  • 3. Sydney, Australia
  • 2. Dubai, UAE

And the best city for remote workers…

  • 1. Melbourne, Australia. 

US workers may not be surprised that the country didn’t break the top ten. The highest ranking for a United States city is Chicago, which ranks number 13. For such a tech-integrated country, the United States certainly put in a poor showing on the list; problems with remote work opportunities in the US show up in metrics like healthcare and remote work infrastructure. 

The Future of Remote Work

Twitter Remote Work

Even though the US is lagging a little in the remote work department, there is cause for workers to hope. Dozens of companies have already signaled plans to allow their workers to work remotely permanently, even after the pandemic has receded completely, including (but not limited to):

  • The US Air Force and Navy: both branches have suggested that they will keep in-person staff at the Pentagon at 50% permanently, keeping the other 50% of positions remote.
  • Capital One: One of the country’s biggest credit companies, nearly all of their call center workers are now permanently remote. 
  • Reddit: The social media platform is allowing workers to pick flexible options that include a hybrid or full remote system. 
  • Coca-Cola: Always at the forefront of social change, the soft drink and brand giant is offering employees a chance to work remotely permanently as long as their presence in office is not a requirement of their job.
  • Zillow: The home-buying titan is allowing 90% of their employees the option to choose remote work, hybrid, or a combination of the two.
  • Twitter: Employees who can work from home will be given the option to do so permanently. 
  • Apple: Apple employees will be working remotely two days a week for the foreseeable future, and in office for the remaining three work days. 

Other companies have announced plans to implement a hybrid system or at least the option for remote work. This allows people to stay in a career they love, and hit the road. Whether they plan to settle down across the country or world and continue working for their hometown company, or city hop for a few years and sate their wanderlust, the landscape of remote work has changed the ballgame for an entire generation of workers. Millenials are a remote work-focused generation, and as they age into positions of power in more companies, the remote options are likely to continue to grow. Cities hoping to have a robust economy in the new world will have to attract these workers, and legislate accordingly. The age of the digital nomad has arrived.