Hard Truths About What to Pack as a Digital Nomad

If you're living life on the road, you've got only so much room in your luggage. Here are the essentials.
Sam KemmisFeb 17, 2021

Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This may influence which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own. Here is a list of our partners and here's how we make money.

The pandemic has transformed nomadism from an idea into a reality for many. And whether you’re just daydreaming about hitting the road full time or already doing it, you might have some questions. Where can you go? How do you pay taxes? And what should you pack?

I’ve been living as a digital nomad for over three years. In that time, I’ve lived , with my friends, in the back of a van and, yes, with my parents (any digital nomad who says otherwise can’t be trusted). I’ve learned a few lessons about what to pack and, more importantly, what to leave behind.

Yet the term “digital nomad” is as vague as it is trendy. Some nomads hop constantly among remote beach towns. Others live in RVs and stay closer to home. And others embrace the “slomad” approach, spending more time and putting down roots in each destination.

So, we'll break down our packing ideas by how you’re planning to travel and also cover some hard truths about what to leave off your list.

Whether you’re headed to Bali or Birmingham, every digital nomad needs some essentials.

changes the nomad equation considerably. Not packing everything on your back, you're much less constrained by weight and space. But, you need more to live and work comfortably.

This is the traditional  lifestyle. Keep things simple and light, and be willing to make mistakes. Course-correct if you don’t get it right on your first trip.

This is far from an exhaustive digital nomad packing list. You’ll need more than a backpack and a pair of undies to make it — but not much more. Though potentially hard to swallow, let this serve as a starting place for inventorying your belongings if you’re considering this lifestyle.

The most important thing to remember is to keep it light, not only the physical weight of what you bring, but also your attitude toward packing. It will be much easier to tell what you can ditch — and what you need that you didn’t bring — after your first trip.

On a similar note...
Dive even deeper in Travel