Tips for Embracing the Nomadic Lifestyle as a Family

The nomadic lifestyle sounds like a dream. With no 9-to-5 job to worry about, you can work from any location with an internet connection. You can decide to up and move and see a new area whenever you feel like it. Seeing the world during your 20s and 30s can give you rewarding, memorable experiences and change your life. Embracing that lifestyle becomes more complicated when you have a family, but you don’t have to sacrifice your nomadic dream. With proper planning and some safety measures in place, your entire family can enjoy that adventure with you. You can create a unique childhood and a worldly perspective. These valuable experiences will stay with your children for the rest of their lives. Here are some tips for embracing the nomadic lifestyle as a family.

Learn how to budget

Establishing a budget for your family is important, but only 41% of Americans currently use a budget. While a traditional budget needs to encompass expenses like your mortgage, utilities and car insurance, your nomadic lifestyle expenses will differ. 

To start your family’s budget, familiarize yourself with the cost of living in the areas where you intend to stay. Cost of living can vary substantially from country to country or even from region to region. Do your research ahead of time to make sure that living in a certain area is practical. You’ll also need to determine your average monthly income and add up other expenses. Look at health insurance, travel costs, food and daily living expenses. Then, consider whether your income can support living in various locations. 

Once you have an idea of your expenses and your income, track your spending across a couple of months. This can help you identify areas where you’re over-spending or spending unnecessarily, like buying coffee at a coffee shop instead of preparing it at home. 

Set a monthly budget for your family that will leave you with money left over at the end of each month, and put that money into savings. You can use your knowledge of where you’re over-spending to reduce your expenses so you have more money left over. By living on a budget, you’ll have extra money in savings to pay for unexpected expenses, like if a family member gets sick or if your income dips on occasion. 

Mother sitting with young child on her lap looking at a laptop; nomadic lifestyle as a family

Help your kids learn to embrace change

You may be thrilled to explore new areas and learn about different cultures, but the frequent change that comes with a nomadic lifestyle can be difficult for kids. This is especially true if they’ve grown up with stability and are transitioning into a nomadic lifestyle as a family. You can help your kids get excited about the prospect of moving to a new place by letting them help you choose your next destination. 

There are many ways to help your children adjust to a new home. Take them on a tour of the neighborhood and find some interesting local destinations that your family can explore together. Try to make each move an exciting and special occasion, and get your kids involved in the process. Have them help pack their belongings. Let them choose how they’d like to decorate their new rooms. Give them jobs so that they feel like they’re a part of the moving process. 

Keep safety in mind

It’s also important to take steps to keep your family safe. When you’re traveling with kids, it’s even more important to thoroughly research your destination to ensure it’s safe. Familiarize yourself with the local culture and the resources available in a location, including health care for your family. 

You should also invest in insurance. Health insurance can help to protect your family against hefty medical bills; be sure you understand the policy, your deductible, and which expenses may not be covered. Travel insurance is also advisable when you’re frequently traveling. 

An expecting mother and father holding hands and baby shoes; nomadic lifestyle as a family

Be prepared for pregnancy

If you’re expecting, you may need to make some adjustments to your nomadic lifestyle. You can still travel while pregnant, but the progression of your pregnancy and any risk factors may affect which travel options are safe for you. Most pregnant women travel by car, but air travel can be safe as long as your health care provider approves it first. 

As a digital nomad, you’ll need to have access to information that will help you to track, understand, and navigate your pregnancy. You can access this information through apps, websites, books and, most importantly, your health care provider. If you’re traveling, you may want to stay in one location while pregnant. That way you can establish a relationship with a trusted professional who can help monitor your pregnancy. Choosing a location with quality healthcare, local hospitals and resources for expectant and new mothers can relieve some of the stress and risk of being pregnant while traveling. 

Your digital nomadic journey can be an exciting one, and it’s possible to embrace the nomadic lifestyle as a family, too. With adequate planning and a few adjustments, your family can create lifelong memories together all over the country or the world.

About Jori Hamilton


Jori Hamilton is a writer from the pacific northwest who covers travel, social issues, and technology. You can follow her on twitter @hamiltonjori

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