A recent report published by MBO Partners has revealed that 53% of American digital nomads are opting to keep their work-travel lifestyle exclusively within the borders of the United States.
The data challenges the notion that a digital nomadic lifestyle must involve traveling outside one’s home country. The study unveils a remarkable statistic: approximately 17.3 million American workers currently identify as digital nomads, marking a 2% increase from the preceding year.
While the age demographics of digital nomads has often been associated with younger professionals, MBO’s report also highlights a noteworthy shift: the percentage of Gen Xers and Baby Boomers engaging in the digital nomad lifestyle has risen from 36% in 2022 to a notable 42% in 2023. This surge has been attributed to the decreasing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the growing willingness of older workers to embrace remote, nomadic work arrangements.
The analysis also sheds light on those deemed “hidden nomads.” According to MBO’s report, “In this year’s survey, 14% of digital nomads with traditional jobs reported that their employer does not know they are nomadic.” An estimated one-third of digital nomads who maintain traditional jobs are navigating their own nomadic lifestyles under the radar of their employers. However, 18% are being allowed by bosses who grant permission despite the absence of an official company-wide digital nomad policy.
It’s evident that digital nomadism is gaining global traction with a reported 58 countries having already introduced special digital nomad visas and programs. This development not only speaks to the changing nature of remote work, but may also influence policies at major U.S. metro centers and local economies vying to attract traveling workers.
As new areas adapt to this evolving trend, the future of work might be shaped by the unique interplay between location independence, community engagement, and the demands for better work-life balance.