While digital nomads tend to seek out a more affordable cost of living, it is not Southeast Asia nor South America that has emerged as the world’s most popular digital nomad regions.

Europe, with its accessibility and diversity, has become the most popular travel destination for digital nomads. Aside from US citizens, who often prefer to travel within the United States and over the border in Mexico, most digital nomads are heading to Europe. And the number of digital nomads in Europe is probably under-counted due to border-free travel for Europeans themselves in the Schengen area.


Europe: A Haven of Connectivity, Culture, and Convenience

The Economist recently had a look at just why Europe is so popular with digital nomads, and there are lots of good reasons to favor the continent.

Europe is well-connected and relatively easily accessible, no matter where you are in the world. While the Schengen visa system is not always welcoming to non-Europeans, the fact that many European countries are leading the way when it comes to digital nomad visas has helped to break down that barrier.

Europe’s pretty and walkable cities are set up for digital nomads. Wi-Fi coverage across the continent, in general, is good, there are lots of hostels, Airbnbs, and other short-stay accommodation options, and the coffee shop culture is widespread. Not many people bat an eye when they see someone sitting in a coffee shop window with a laptop open. Many of the biggest coworking spaces also got their start in Europe.

When you aren’t working, there are usually historical sites, museums, gardens, and other attractions within short walking distance. This makes it easy to make the most of your daily downtime. While Europe is big, you rarely have to travel far to discover a historical village or cross the border to encounter a new culture, making it an exciting place to explore.

While many people prefer to live in vibrant cities such as Lisbon, Paris, Berlin, or London, you can also choose to spend your time in more “remote” areas such as Swiss Alp villages, lakeside towns, and small beach communities. But while these places might feel remote, you are never far from civilization.

Great infrastructure and technology and English being widely spoken are also big attractions, especially for digital nomads from North America, the Antipodes, and the United Kingdom. There are lots of good reasons why Europe has emerged as such a popular destination


Most Popular European Countries for Digital Nomads

While there are many different surveys of the most popular digital nomad destinations that return a variety of different numbers, it is nevertheless clear which countries are the most popular with digital nomads.



Portugal has quickly emerged as one of the most popular digital nomad destinations in Europe, both with European citizens and those taking advantage of the Portugal digital nomad visa. This is due to Portugal offering one of the most affordable costs of living in Europe with a warm Mediterranean climate, stunning Atlantic beaches, and historic cities full of great restaurants and atmosphere.

In fact, Portugal, and Lisbon in particular, has become so popular with digital nomads that many locals are complaining about the impact they are having in terms of housing prices and gentrification. Governments are looking for ways to better manage the digital nomad situation. Read our guides to living in Lisbon, Faro, and Madeira as a digital nomad.



Spain has emerged as one of the top digital nomad destinations in Europe for many of the same reasons as Portugal. It offers an affordable cost of living, a laid-back lifestyle based around good food and good friends, strong cultural offerings, and amazing weather most of the year.

Spain also claims to have one of the best digital nomad visas on the market both in terms of ease of applying an accessible minimum income requirement at just US$2,280 per month. The visa also offers a pathway to citizenship as it is renewable for up to five years. Read our guides to living in Madrid, Barcelona, San Sebastian, Tarifa, Grenada, and Valencia as a digital nomad.



Over in the Adriatic Sea, Croatia is successfully attracting digital nomads with their visa for remote workers. Similarly, Croatia has one of the more affordable costs of living in Europe, combined with a Mediterranean climate, long coastlines, and a stunning green center to explore. The country is also known for its fresh food, quality olive oil, and excellent wines. Find out more reasons why Croatia is so popular here.



Germany has also emerged as a popular destination for digital nomads despite its relatively high cost of living and lack of a digital nomad visa. But people are attracted by the robust economy, cutting-edge tech scene, and high standard of living.

The plentiful coworking spaces and entrepreneurial atmosphere attract the kind of digital nomads eager to build something. Some will apply for freelance or self-employment visas. Meanwhile, the historic cities and green countryside attract explorers.


United Kingdom


For similar reasons to Germany, the United Kingdom has emerged as a popular destination for digital nomads. The shared English language is an extra incentive for US remote workers. While there is no visa and the cost of living in relatively high, London attracts creatives and entrepreneurs from around the world.

The UK is also a nation of rich history of greenery. Intellectual centers such as Oxford and Cambridge are popular. Historic green regions like the Cotswold’s and the Lake District are also attracting traveling workers.


Who Are Digital Nomads in Europe

Most of the current research out there looks specifically at digital nomads with a US passport, or digital nomads in general. These studies are also lacking because they tend to rely on digital nomads active in the online community volunteering to respond. This automatically pre-selects for a certain kind of nomad. Moreover, the majority of surveys are conducted in English.

This is not meant as a criticism of many of the excellent studies that have been emerging, but rather as a warning that we just don’t have a full picture.

Nevertheless, a recent survey published by Sifted shares some information about digital nomads in Europe, with a caveat about sampling issues. But let’s look at some of the key findings.

  • Most digital nomads in Europe earn between EUR41,000-50,000 a year, and the majority said that you need to make between EUR3,000-3,900 per year to live comfortably as a digital nomad.
  • Most digital nomads in Europe come from wealthy countries, with 37.4% from the United States and 12.3% from the United Kingdom. The survey captured 5.6% from Germany, 4% from France, and 2% from Portugal and Italy. But the number of EU citizens traveling in Europe as digital nomads is likely to be under-counted.
  • More than 70% of European digital nomads were between the ages of 30-49 years.
  • According to the survey 43.4% of digital nomads in Europe were traveling alone, 23.9% with a partner, and 17.5% with a partner. The rest were traveling with other nomads or friends.
  • Around 60% of those traveling were taking advantage of digital nomad visas.

The survey also found that the number one frustration for digital nomads in Europe was finding appropriate and affordable accommodation, unsurprisingly considering Europe is home to some of the tightest and most expensive residential housing markets. This concern was followed by the issue of meeting new friends and managing tax liabilities.


Future of Digital Nomads in Europe

Europe is set to maintain a significant advantage over other regions of the world when it comes to attracting digital nomads, at least from wealthy western countries, for all the reasons already examined.

Furthermore, Europe has led the way on reasonable digital nomad visa. While many Asian countries are now starting to release DNVs, they are setting the bar very high, with the minimum income starting from US$60,000 and up. This is allowing countries like Japan and South Korea to be more selective about their digital nomad communities and control the influx of remote workers that have seen issued in countries such as Portugal.

As the cost-of-living crisis continues, more remote workers are choosing to travel closer to home. While this might see a drop in US digital nomads in Europe, European digital nomads will probably take greater advantage of the lower cost of living in nearby countries.

It is probably only when the cost-of-living crisis eases that we will see a major change in the current global distribution of digital nomads.