The X Cheapest Countries to Live in as a Freelancer
Thankfully, being a freelancer doesn’t limit you to working at just your house or apartment in whatever state you reside in.
Freelancing gigs can be done anywhere as long as you have an internet connection, so really, you can go out and see the whole world, while still accomplishing meaningful work! And even though money might be an issue in order to travel, there are some pretty affordable countries out there that give you tons of financial flexibility.
If you’re tired of the rat race and want to spread your wings somewhere new, here are 6 of the most affordable countries to live and work in as a freelancer:
Thailand boasts some of the cheapest cities in the world to work in as a freelancer: Ko Lanta, Bangkok, and Ching Mai, to name a few.
Not only is Thailand super affordable, with the average monthly cost of living only at around $400, but it’s also got plenty of beautiful islands and beaches for you to visit when you’re not doing remote work. For a list of some of Thailand’s most famous attractions, click here!
Also, English is the second most common language spoken in the country, so you shouldn’t have any trouble trying to communicate with the public there. All you need is to find a cozy place to call home and your new adventure is set!
If Europe is more your style, definitely consider Albania. It’s one of the most creative and innovative countries out there with eye-popping buildings, artwork, monuments, and tasty foods that leave you wanting more! You may have to learn how to speak a little Albanian, however, as 98% of the population speaks it. That said, the average cost of housing is only $365 a month, and that’s within expensive parts of the country. It’s a small price to pay for some brand new experiences.
Also, as an American, you can visit up until one year without a visa, which is a huge plus.
Sticking with European countries, Spain is a popular destination for remote work.
Home to arguably the greatest soccer team in the world (FC Barcelona) and some of the most beautiful coasts anyone could ask for, the cost of living here for a one-bedroom apartment would be just under $500 a month—within cities and not directly on the beach, that is.
Places like Madrid and Valencia have big populations with plenty of access to resources like WIFI and other amenities. But if you want to explore the real beauties of the country, you’ll want to venture out to cities like Granada, San Sebastian, or Sevilla. However, the areas start to get a bit more pricey.
Although it may not feel like an exotic choice, the UK offers tons of benefits as a place to work and live as a freelancer.
First off, you’ll have no trouble speaking to anyone there since English is the primary language—the only difference is that famous British accent! The UK is also home to many attractions that tourists love, such as the London Eye, the Big Ben clock tower, and Stonehenge. Everywhere you look in the UK is a sight for sore eyes, so you shouldn’t ever run out of fun things to do.
Not to mention, the average monthly cost of living alone in some of the cheapest places in the UK is around 500 pounds, or $640, according to lovemoney.com. This is more expensive than most other affordable countries in this lineup, but with the number of things to see and do, it’s worth it.
One more thing: the UK has some of the best public transit to help you get around. And if you ever get bored with the UK, just hop on a bullet train to Scotland or Ireland. Simple.
A mass of islands to the southeast of Australia may be the perfect place for you.
New Zealand is famous for its outdoor attractions and wonders of nature—some of the mountains and ravines throughout the country are absolutely breathtaking. Even if you’re the kind of freelancer who sits inside all day, you can still appreciate the scenery and take in the fresh air while you type away at the computer.
English is still one of the main languages spoken in New Zealand, and the weather stays moderately warm all year. It may take you some time to adjust to summertime happening during the winter months, but you’d only be paying around $1040 a month while you acclimate.
This is the most expensive country on this list, but better internet and coffee may be enough to persuade you to move despite the larger cost. If you really wanted to rough it and save some money, you could probably live in a tent somewhere on a bluff. Just make sure to get cleaned up and find a place to do your assignments online.
For working independently, Hong Kong is your best bet.
With a top public transport rating and many cheap places to live, like the famous capsule hotels, there’s plenty of opportunities here for world travelers. There are so many places to visit, (include some famous spots to check out here), and since Hong Kong is a pretty modern country, you should have no problems finding excellent wifi connections and interesting workspaces to boost your freelance success. The only trouble you may have is controlling yourself around all the delicious foods and snacks from restaurants and street vendors.
The cost of living in Hong Kong is around $886. And something else that’s pretty awesome for freelancers is that being your own boss is encouraged within the country. The entrepreneurial mindset is a cornerstone of what makes Hong Kong a great place to live, and you should be able to connect yourself to that spirit as soon as you arrive!
Wherever you decide to go, remember that you moved there for a reason—to improve your work-life balance and have great adventures.
Having a life completely dominated by work is never any fun, but if you can create opportunities for yourself to travel, while still furthering your professional goals as a freelancer, then why not make a change?
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