Lessons Learned From Going Nomad
So here we are just over a week into this journey of being a digital nomad. I'm by no means an expert yet when it comes to travel and being a nomad but I wanted to share the lessons I've learned with you thus far.
When I first packed my backpack and carry on (the only two bags I'll be carrying with me every day throughout the year), I thought I had downsized the amount of stuff to a good set of items. However, in this first week, I've noticed that there are still about 1/4 of the items in my suitcase or backpack that I haven't used and don't intend to use. Lesson here? Purging while you're moving out is smart, but do a second purge soon after you move out to make sure that you get rid of all the other things you don't end up using.
PLAN IN ADVANCE
When I was moving out of my apartment, I scheduled the donation people to come the day before I turned in the keys. This doesn't sound like a bad idea - gives me one day to clean out the apartment and everything before exiting, right? Well...I forgot to consider that this meant I also had one night left in the apartment as well. For anyone who's wondering, sleeping directly on hardwood flooring with a folded bath towel as a pillow in the middle of a Chicago winter is not an enjoyable experience. Lesson here? Plan ahead. Clean as much of the apartment as you can ahead of time, schedule your donation pickup as late as possible, and don't forget to keep some kind of blanket or air mattress to sleep on your last night in the apartment.
CONSIDER THE SEASONS...BUT ALSO YOURSELF
My mother's voice in the back of my head was telling me to pack sweaters as I was loading up my carry on for these first couple months of adventures...but then I remembered that I'm primarily going to be in warm climates and that I am usually way too hot if the temperature is above a balmy 35 degrees. Lesson here? Know yourself. For me, packing just one sweater makes sense, because I really don't wear sweaters, even in the winter. For you, packing 4 extra sweaters might make sense because you're cold even at 70 degrees.
SHARE YOUR STORY
Moving out of my apartment meant cancelling services like Comcast, sorting out mail, and seeking out new car insurance since my car will be driven so much less frequently. When I was on the phone with Comcast, they said I'd be charged a $300+ cancellation fee. YEOWCH. However, when I explained that I wasn't moving somewhere new and choosing not to have Comcast but instead was going nomad and would be enjoying Comcast in a variety of AirBNBs across the country, they waived the cancellation fee because it was impossible for me to transfer my services. Same with car insurance - sharing my story with friends caused a friend to tell me about MetroMile and now my car insurance is 30% of what it used to cost! Lesson here? Don't be afraid to share your awesome story, you never know what the benefit will be.