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Zagreb Digital Nomad Week

What is a digital nomad? I found myself asking one day while drinking coffee at Swanky, surrounded by 5 people focused on their laptops while happily taping their feat against the chair leg in the rhythm of the slow beat coming from the bar. Are they working or paying WOW …

Turns out 2 of them were exchange students, 2 were digital nomads and the last one was a local guy working „from home“( loving the idea of calling Swanky – home ).

So here we were – 2 French guys, 1 student from Nepal, the other from Jordan, Rade from down the street and me – confused a bit, but my attention was caught. I started talking to people, coworkers and other guests of the hostel about what do we know regarding new trends of working and did this pandemic turned us into a „new generation“ or am I just waaaay behind – either way, one thing is for sure – slowly but safely we are leaving the old fashioned way of working and starting to be more independent not tied to 1 place, certain time or even 1 employer or company.

Now for all of you „modern folks” out there, you are probably thinking – oh my god Iva, welcome to 2021 grandma, but I’ll bet you there is a lot of people who are still not quite sure if this new way is good or bad. I am saying this because mainly we are creatures of habits (my dad would say – if it’s not broke don’t fix it) – btw. Hi, dad !! – so it is difficult to be motivated if you can do your job anywhere or anytime you want – or is it..?

Come to think about it, I have been doing this for years actually – not all the time dough – but I just did not put a „name“on it. After few weeks of brainstorming and researching Swanky Travel decided to share the idea of a platform that will combine business and pleasure. One thing led to another (in our case one Mojito led to another) and we ended up being surrounded by like-minded people which I had the opportunity to work with, at THE FIRST ZAGREB DIGITAL NOMAD WEEK (talk about good timing, right?).

Since January 1, 2021, Croatia is officially offering temporary residence to digital nomads enabling them to stay and work here for up to 12 months for which we can thank Jan de Jong. It was a matter of time when somebody will do something about it, and luckily for all of us – they did it – Tanja & Paul – two awesome people behind SALTWATER NOMADS & TOTAL CROATIA NEWS

This, first of its kind, the amazingly interesting event was a 7-day conference dedicated to all important topics for remote workers and also a very innovative way of casually doing something important as this. Every day there was a morning session with interesting speakers followed by evening happy hours full of laughs, delicious food & drinks, and a lot of networking. But that is not all – the event also included a Digital Nomad Ambassador Project sponsored by the Zagreb Tourist Board, which will be active for 6 months enabling 1 digital nomad/ per month to live and work in Zagreb indulging in all the benefits that it has to offer.

I know all of this – but even now when I am reading it to do spellcheck it is still making me so happy that I was a part of it.

So, what have we learned:

  1. It is not a digital nomad visa – it is a permit
  2. Community, networking, socializing, repeat
  3. A remote worker over digital nomad
  4. Do not call Paul Bradbury miss in front of major tourism representatives and live stream
  5. It is estimated that by the year 2035 there ́s going to be 1 billion digital nomads in the world
  6. Don’t be afraid to follow your dreams and take the leap
  7. Rakija is essential for making good business connections
  8. WiFi. AC. Pet Friendly. Coffee.
  9. Say YES
  10. A lot of other interesting stories, facts, and tips which you can check out HERE