Essential Tech Gear for Digital Nomads
By Mike Agerbo
November 14, 2019
Small Business & Entrepreneurship
More than anyone, digital nomads rely on tech gear to earn a living. As such, it’s essential to invest in the right gear while being careful not to pick up too many items, which can make travel challenging. In other words, you want to focus on quality and not quantity if you’re thinking about becoming a digital nomad. Here is a list of the essential tech gear for digital nomads to get you started.
It goes without saying that you’ll want to invest in a laptop if you plan on becoming a location independent worker. But just any laptop won’t do as you’ll want one that meets your needs in performance while being lightweight and durable. In short, this is a piece of tech gear you don’t want to skimp on. When choosing a laptop for travel and work, go for one that’s faster and has a little more storage capacity than you think you’ll need. This will help to ensure that you can meet the demands of your work even in remote locations where you can’t just swing by the local tech store to pick up an additional piece of gear. Battery life is another important consideration, as you might find yourself working on airplanes and in coffee shops where power isn’t readily available.
Equally as important as performance, choose a laptop that’s portable and durable. The last thing you’ll want as you move from one location to the next is a bulky laptop that takes up a lot of space or weighs you down. You’ll also want a laptop that can take a few bumps along the way, because travel can be messy.
Personally, I think the Apple MacBook Pro and Lenovo Ideapad offer the best balance of performance, size, and price for digital nomads.
Co-working spaces, airports, coffee shops—these are all loud places where it might be tricky to buckle down and concentrate. As such, it’s important to invest in a set of noise cancelling headphones to drown out the bustle around you. Personally, I recommend Sony Noise Cancelling Headphones, which offer great performance and battery life without breaking the bank.
World Travel Plug Adapters
Investing in plug adapters might seem obvious but if you’ll be traveling consistently you’ll want to go one step further by looking for ones that are universal and have additional USB charging ports. A great universal adapter is one that is a single piece with different plug types that can slide out when you need them. A couple of USB charging ports in addition to the main plug will enable you to charge your smartphone and any other accessories while you use the main plug. Try this Royce Leather International Travel Plug Adapter.
A smartphone is an essential tool for a digital nomad, but running apps like Google Maps and FaceTime on a constant basis can drain your battery fast. Keep your smartphone powered up with an external powerbank like this lightweight 10,000 mAh one from TP-Link.
Portable Laptop Stand
Since coffee shops and co-working spaces rarely offer ergonomic workspaces, I recommend packing a lightweight portable laptop stand to make working more comfortable. These stands will help bring your laptop closer to eye level while also giving it a little tilt to make typing more comfortable.
External Hard Drive
Things happen when you’re traveling: laptops are dropped or stolen and files become corrupted without warning. This means that it’s essential to back up your files on a reliable external hard drive—and I mean ALL your files. Look for a solid state drive, or SSD, that has at least 1TB of storage space. Solid state drives don’t have any moving parts, unlike traditional external hard drives, making them more durable and less likely to fail. Personally, I like the Samsung T5 drives.