Each country poses it’s own challenges when it comes to being a digital nomad. Some countries definitely have more challenges than others. Before heading off to be a digital nomad in a country, it’s worth being aware of countries where it might be difficult (not necessarily impossible) to be a digital nomad.
Here are 6 difficult countries to be a digital nomad.
Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan
The challenges of being a digital nomad in Central Asia will vary depending on the country, however overall with the censorships and number of rules enforced on tourists, Central Asia can be a challenging place to be a digital nomad. These two countries are the most oppressed in Central Asia, with Turkmenistan actually being the third most oppressed country in the world. The biggest challenge for Turkmenistan will be getting a visa for more than 5 days. The country does not like visitors and will do anything to stop them entering. Most people manage to secure a 3 – 5 day transit visa, but nothing more.
Uzbekistan is little more fore coming with it’s visas, however they do come with many rules and regulations.
Kyrgyzstan is probably the easiest county in Central Asia to get a visa. The country is embracing tourism as they’ve recognised it to be good for the economy. Internet is becoming more widely available and the cost of living is quite low. There are still a few censorship challenges, however it’s likely this will change in the future. Kyrgyzstan could actually be a good option for a digital nomad, as long as you visit with an open mind, strong VPN and some patience for the temperamental internet connection.
If you can get a visa for Kazakhstan, then the main issue would be internet censorship. If you are travelling through Kazakhstan then finding internet could also be an issue. If you do decide to travel to Kazakhstan to be a digital nomad, head to the major cities such as Almaty, would definitely be the best option.
Iran is an absolutely stunning and fascinating country to visit. The Persian hospitality and culture are renowned. It’s a country of saffron, Persian poets, such as Rumi, mouth-watering dates and beautiful architecture.
The downside to working as a digital nomad in Iran is the website censorship. With that being said, there are ways around internet censorship, such as purchasing a good, local VPN. Interestingly we found the local VPNs worked much better than foreign ones. It’s also questionable to what might happen if the government discovers your digital nomad work, as you will be breaking the terms of your visa. Likely, you will just pay a fine or maybe a bribe, but is this something you really want to risk? With that being said, there are so many ‘rules’ in Iran, that it’s likely you will break a few of them during your stay. Another challenge in Iran is that cash machines don’t work, which means you have to bring all your spending money into the country with you. This could be an issue if you plan on staying in Iran for a long period of time.
Cuba is definitely a hot destination right now and with good reason. The country gives you an insight into Caribbean life in the 1950s. Cuba has been isolated from the rest of the world for decades. This has meant the country’s advancement in technology has been limited, and finding a decent (if any) internet is rare. It’s possible that this will change overtime, however currently wi-fi is almost non-existent and there are only a handful of expensive internet cafes in the country.
What countries have you found challenging for a digital nomad? Let us know in the comment section below.