Turkey’s Lure for Digital Nomads
In recent years, the digital nomad lifestyle has gained immense popularity, with the number of digital nomads from the United States soaring from 4.8 million in 2018 to 15.5 million by 2021, according to Project Untethered.
This global trend has led to the concept of geoarbitrage, championed by lifestyle influencers like Tim Ferris, where individuals seek to maximize their income while enjoying a higher quality of life in lower-cost countries.
Turkey, situated at the crossroads of Europe and Asia, is increasingly emerging as an attractive destination for digital nomads due to its unique blend of culture, affordability, and infrastructure.
Why Turkey is an Ideal Digital Nomad Hub
1. Cost of Living
Turkey offers outstanding value for digital nomads, whether you choose to reside in Istanbul or other major cities. Monthly expenses, covering accommodation, dining, entertainment, and transportation, typically range from $1,000 to $2,000 USD.
This affordability enables digital nomads to enjoy a higher standard of living without breaking the bank. Numbeo data indicates that Istanbul's cost of living is 68% less than New York City and 59% less than Los Angeles, making it an attractive destination for those looking to save money while living comfortably.
2. Remote Working Infrastructure
Turkey boasts a thriving ecosystem for remote work. Across major cities, you'll find numerous coworking spaces, cozy cafes, and restaurants catering to digital nomads. Social and networking events are common, providing opportunities to connect with like-minded individuals.
As of January 2022, Turkey's average wifi speeds for mobile and fixed broadband range from 26 to 32 Mbps, according to Speed Test. While this may be slightly lower than some European countries, it surpasses the global average.
In major urban areas like Istanbul, internet speeds are stable and reliable, ensuring that you can work efficiently. Acquiring a SIM card is also straightforward, with Turkcell, Türk Telekom, and Vodafone offering high-speed internet services and extensive network coverage.
3. Ease of Obtaining a Visa
Simplifying the visa process is crucial for digital nomads, and Turkey has made it exceptionally convenient for US and Canadian citizens to obtain e-visas online. This approach eliminates the need for time-consuming visa-on-arrival procedures and long airport queues.
The process involves filling out an online application at least two days before your trip, paying a $51.50 application fee, and submitting the necessary documents. Alternatively, you can use services that expedite the application in under 180 seconds, streamlining the process further.
Choosing Your Destination Within Turkey
As you contemplate Turkey as your next digital nomad destination, consider the following options:
Istanbul: A Cultural Haven
Istanbul, with its rich history, museums, natural wonders, diverse dining options, and vibrant café scene, offers a unique and bustling city experience. It's a cultural hub that provides countless opportunities for exploration and immersion in Turkish culture.
Izmir: Coastal Tranquility
Izmir is a hidden gem often overlooked by digital nomads. Nestled on the Aegean Sea, this city boasts a youthful atmosphere,friendly locals, and stunning natural beauty. With a lower cost of living compared to Istanbul, it offers a tranquil yet dynamic remote working paradise.
Ankara: A Blend of Work and Heritage
As the capital, Ankara offers shared working spaces, libraries, and cafes conducive to remote work. The city also boasts a rich cultural and historical legacy, making it an attractive destination for those seeking both work and exploration.
Turkey, with its affordable cost of living, robust infrastructure, and streamlined visa process, has rightfully earned its place on the radar of digital nomads.
Whether you prefer the bustling streets of Istanbul, the coastal tranquility of Izmir, or the historical richness of Ankara, Turkey offers diverse opportunities for a rewarding remote working experience. Your next digital nomad adventure in Turkey is just a few clicks away!