I’ve been happily drifting around the globe for almost 3 years. My digital nomad life started one morning in Brooklyn when I realized I could do my freelance graphic design job from anywhere. I booked a ticket to Berlin, stored my stuff, and packed a couple of bags. After several months of solo travel, I realized I loved the nomad life but I was feeling lonely and run down. I hoped a program would provide me with logistical support (locations, housing, events), and community (people to plan weekend trips with, get dinner with, or collaborate on work projects with).
I looked into programs and honestly, I wrote Hacker Paradise off. Trips were only 2-8 weeks and I wanted a long-term solution that would provide community and logistical travel support for at least a year. It wasn’t until a while later that I realized I was wrong. Two of the biggest misconceptions I hear about Hacker Paradise are that it’s just for tech people and that it’s just a short-term travel program, neither of which fit into a true nomad life. I’ll elaborate:
It’s just for developers.
One of the things I value about Hacker Paradise is the mix of people with different careers, backgrounds, passports and hobbies. Is there still going to be someone (or several people) on your trip with an opinion about which VPN you should use or how to keep your laptop secure? Of course. My first Hacker Paradise roommate in Cape Town was this person. But, there are also going to be writers, designers, lawyers, translators, and everything in between.
It’s just short-term trips which doesn’t fit into my nomad life.
Although trips are no longer than 8 weeks, I’m already on my 3rd Hacker Paradise trip of 2019 (Thailand, Brazil, Italy). Hacker Paradise has cultivated a strong alumni community and each trip has a handful of alumni on it along with a group of fresh faces. When I join a new trip, I know there will always be some other alumni I know in the group which makes me feel at home, while I’m wandering the world, living my nomad life.
It didn’t take me long to realize that Hacker Paradise isn’t just a short-term break for programmers. Hacker Paradise can be whatever you want it to be, the most important of which to me is a travel family.
A note from the Hacker Paradise team
We understand that there are misconceptions out there. We also understand how some of them came about. Our roots are in tech and we’re proud of them. But since trading our desk lamps for destinations some five years ago, our group has expanded tremendously. In addition to the standard engineers, designers, entrepreneurs, writers, and data scientist type of roles, we also have nurses, inventors, NGO founders, ethical hackers, real estate developers, feminist bloggers, comic book illustrators, SpaceX engineers, and many other cool types of people come and join us. Also to consider: we’ve had people travel with us for over a year!
Basically what we’re trying to say is, chat with us. Or even better, chat with one of our alum (contact us for details). Find out what the Hacker Paradise experience is really like, before overlooking what could be one of the best decisions of your life.