According to research by travel operator Destination2, workers are increasingly finding ways to extend their long-haul travel holidays for “workcations”, time spent abroad while working, on a temporary basis, usually opted for by those not ready to fully take the plunge and relocate abroad permanently while working remotely.
“There’s pent-up demand for digital nomad visas now that the workplace has gone through a drastic transformation since the pandemic,” reads a statement from the company.
“Prior to the start of it all, only 1.7 million in the UK worked primarily from home, which was about 5 percent of the population. That figure shot up to 46.6 percent of UK workers because of the pandemic”.
Research undertaken by the travel operator found that Portugal tops the list of digital visa countries being searched for by Brits looking to work remotely in a foreign country. Next on the list in Estonia, followed by Spain, Croatia and Thailand.
“Probably due to its green list status, Portugal is the number one country of choice for those looking for a digital nomad visa. Searches have risen by over 250 percent over the past year peaking in March,” reads the statement.
While there are clear benefits for Portugal and the economy in welcoming remote workers from abroad, HR and businesses have spoken of their fears about the trend.
Jacob Dayan, CEO of Community Tax, and Anna Bastek, CEO of Wolfestone Group, say it’s more about cementing trust between employers and employees. “It’s crucial to place trust in your team and demonstrate that trust,” says Bastek, “As long as their tasks are being done, then remote working abroad where it is safe and agreed upon by their line manager, can be a really positive and exciting opportunity during this period.”
Will Collins, Digital Marketing Manager at Destination2, says of workcations: “Travellers are going to be more conscious of their time and how best to make a trip more worthwhile. The pent up desire to travel abroad will explode when international travel opens back up fully.
“And now with the added freedom of remote working, travellers may turn to digital nomad visas to allow them to travel and really get to know and explore a new destination without worrying about their work situation.”
As part of the research, Destination2 also ranked which destinations are best for workcations or working abroad. Portugal also topped this list with its great Wi-Fi and safety. “With no time difference to the UK, Portugal is an easy switch for remote workers. Great connectivity and a top 3 safety rating make it a great choice, too. It’s also one of Western Europe’s most affordable countries, with plenty of stylish AirBnBs and hotels to choose from,” concludes the study.