“We were hoping for 500 registrations in total, we got 200 per day!!” Micaela Vieira, Project Manager in Startup Madeira tells us about the success of the Digital Nomad Village Project in Madeira.
The project started in 2020 when Gonçalo Hall, a digital nomadism advocate and founder of several remote work movements, wondered why Madeira was not on the official map of digital nomads. The islands have everything to offer, from great internet connections, to safety, to welcoming locals, and the ocean and the mountains are at your hands in Madeira.
As for February 2022, the program received more than 11,000 applications and welcomed more than 5,000 digital nomads. Startup Madeira supports digital nomads arriving in Ponta do Sol with everything they need from visa application to accommodation as well as babysitters and lawyers in the area.
Micaela is fascinated by how the islands started adapting to digital nomad lifestyle, the accommodations are adding kitchen equipment and cafes are strengthening their WIFI signals and creating working corners for nomads.
It is also notable how nomads are eager to support the local community, protect the environment and discuss ideas with locals. The majority of digital nomads arriving for now are freelancers and students, with an increasing trend of companies sending their teams for work retreats.
Other islands are preparing to follow in the steps of Ponta do Sol, and Startup Madeira is organizing experiences and visits to other islands to encourage the community, and turn Ponta do Sol into a hub of digital nomad communities.
Micaela states that 2022 will be an important year for the project, where plans of expansion will become a reality. She encouraged anyone who wants to move to Madeira to apply fast and reach out for any question or need.