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Surf. Code. Surf. Repeat. – The lives of digital nomads

Are you looking for an excuse to travel? With over 15,000 graduates across campuses in 45 different cities, Le Wagon has a large global community of digital nomads that you could be a part of! Discover stories from our graduates, and who knows, maybe your digital nomad journey will begin soon!
With campuses located in 45 cities across the globe, Le Wagon is the perfect opportunity to combine your travels with learning to code! Discover 4 stories of some of Le Wagon's digital nomad alumni who combine their work with travel on a regular basis!

Meet Elodie, from Digital Marketing to Freelance Developer
Elodie Marie Duffau

"My name is Elodie and I’m originally from France. Before joining Le Wagon, I studied business and then did a masters in digital marketing and e-commerce. After my studies, I began working at Disneyland Paris in digital marketing. After this, I wanted to work more independently, which is when my career as a freelancer took off. 

Having always had an interest in tech and wanting to learn to code myself, I joined Le Wagon and added another skillset to my freelancing portfolio.

Working as freelancer is a huge opportunity for me to work on different projects and continually learn new skills. It’s also a luxury to be able to organize your day as you wish, work on your top priorities, and create the perfect lifestyle that works for you. It forced me to be very organized, work on myself, and create a really good work-life balance. I'm also in charge of how much time I want to dedicate to work, which I can adapt depending on the period.

The possibilities are unlimited. Being a digital nomad allows you to reflect on the life that makes you happy and where you want to settle, while also allowing you flexibility and travel opportunities. To me it's a really good occasion to explore different places and figure out what the best environment is for you. Most digital nomads don’t travel every week, it takes time to create a good routine and network somewhere. However, it's easy to decide that you want to take a month and work from or travel somewhere else. For me, being a digital nomad also allows me to go visit home any time I want without it impacting my work.

If you want to be a digital nomad I would strongly advise you to understand that there are two ways of doing it. Firstly, you could become a freelancer, allowing you lots of freedom, but it also comes with the pressure or insecurity of having clients. Secondly, you could work remotely for a company, which is perfect if you have less of an entrepreneurial side, but still want to be flexible in your work.

Finally, being a digital nomad can sometimes be lonely, so my advice to you is to ensure that you're always making an effort to combat this and put yourself out there. For me, I find it very important to choose the perfect co-working space, allowing me to have a strong social aspect to my work and meet lots of people."

Meet Roel, from Social Science to Freelance Developer
Roel de Jong

"My name is Roel and I’m originally from the Netherlands. Before joining the Le Wagon community, I studies Social Science for my bachelor's degree and then I did a master’s in Business Administration: Entrepreneurship and Innovation. On the search to gain more technical skills, I did the Web Development Bootcamp. 

I've always been curious about the possibilities that freelancing offers. Being in control of my own time has been my biggest pull, but I was always too afraid to start, as it also has its risks. Over recent months, I was presented with more freelance opportunities that were worth pursuing. After two successful try-out days at one of the possible clients, I decided to take the leap and quit my job.

The best part for me is the control over where and when I work. I still enjoy going to the office and meeting the people I work with in person, but it feels very fulfilling to be able to go on a long trip while still continuing to work and earn. 

My advice would be to ensure that you always have enough savings to survive without income for at least a couple of months. Everybody should be aware of their own situation and the challenges they might be faced with."

Meet Claire, from CRM Marketing to Freelance Developer
Claire Gautier

"My name is Claire and I’m from France.  Before doing the Web Development bootcamp in Bordeaux, I studied in a business school in France. Following this, I was working in CRM marketing in the fashion industry in Paris. I decided to learn to code because I no longer liked my job or the fact that I needed to work in an office all day in a city that I didn’t feel good in. For me, completing the bootcamp was the perfect opportunity to become a freelancer and live my best digital nomad life. 

As I mentioned, I did Le Wagon with the goal of becoming a freelancer upon graduating. I therefore went into freelancing directly after graduating. These years of working as a freelancer were really great for me. I found them very interesting and it taught me so much including how to find my own clients, how to manage various projects, how to learn on my own and it really made me grow as a developer. 

For me, the best part about being a digital nomad and having the freedom to move around is that you never miss important moments in your life. For instance, if I ever wanted to visit family and friends for a birthday or an important event, I could easily visit for a whole week. This is definitely not something that I had the opportunity to do before beginning my career as a freelancer. I also just love the freedom that comes along with the lifestyle. I really love to surf and choosing my own hours and work environment was great in this manner. I was able to work next to the ocean and enjoy the waves whenever I wanted to. 

My advice to someone that would like to start a freelance career in development is to be ready to work hard. You need to take charge of your clients and your work in order to make the most of your career, especially at the beginning when you’re starting from scratch. Also if you want to be a digital nomad, I would recommend that you're very organized and disciplined. It can sometimes be difficult to work when you’re in such beautiful places, but it’s up to you to put in the work."

Meet Daniel, from Industrial Design to Freelance Developer
Daniel Mendez

"My name is Daniel and I’m originally from Colombia, but I grew up in the Netherlands. I’m currently working as a freelance web developer, product designer, and teacher at Le Wagon.

Before joining Le Wagon, I had a background in industrial design. For the last 2 years I worked as a backpack designer and before that I offered industrial design services such as 3D modelling and concept sketching. I wanted to learn to code in order to deep dive into my design background. I wanted to design and develop digital products and step away from physical ones. I was also very intrigued by this idea of working as a digital nomad, being able to find work in any place around the world. 

After graduating from Le Wagon, I decided to re-launch my career as a freelancer. I did this as I wanted to plunge into the numerous fields of web development as well as digital design. As I mentioned, I also really like the flexibility of it. 

This year, I’ve been able to combine my work with surfing and snowboarding abroad. I was able to plan my schedule according to what I wanted to do that day, which is such a luxury.

Freelancing definitely has its ups and downs. The freedom might reflect in your income, but then again, life can be more affordable abroad "

Interested in learning to code and becoming a digital nomad? Learn more here

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