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Has anyone participated in remote work programs like Remote Year or Hacker Paradise?

 

by @whereskristin | 5yr  | 23 comments

I am interested if anyone in the Forum has participated in one of these โ€œRemote Yearโ€ style trips around the world. I see that many are popping up for 2016 as well and have not launched yet but there are probably a few ongoing that arenโ€™t on the below list.

Some examples are:

I definitely see the benefits (community, logistics, adventure, creative inspiration, etc) but Iโ€™m just interested in peopleโ€™s feedback overall. There doesnโ€™t seem to be much info online from actual participants and their feedback. For instance:

What has been your experience overall?

Do you prefer this type of group travel over traveling alone or with 1-2 other people?

What are the pros and cons?

How professional and organized are the companies offering these services?

Do people drop out?

Would you do it again?

What is what you expected?

Did you save time/money?

Was it a better overall experience than being a regular Digital Nomad?

What are accommodations like?

Is it worth the premium price?

What would you change/improve about the experience?

Any other feedback?

Etc.

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@flyonthewall | 4yr

An interesting writeup on Remote Year from one of the first few participants. http://mashable.com/2016/08/13/remote-year/

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@msurocks99 | 5yr

What I have found Remote year is a bit pricey and its for people who doesnโ€™t want to plan anything by themselves, just want to spend money instead for it.
And On other way people who want to save money and being independent can travel alone or form a group of 3-5 and travel together, its cheap, you have freedom to do things together and also have opportunity to meet with local people, have time to do things together.

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@katelynmsmith | 5yr

You are right, it certainly doesnโ€™t come at a cheap price. However, what we get out of it, itโ€™s a really fair price. Itโ€™s also just a one year commitment, not a forever thing. Otherwise itโ€™s just not sustainable. I think itโ€™s ideal for people who want to become digital nomads but just donโ€™t know where to start (which was me 8 months ago). Think of it like a crash course in โ€œhow to be a digital nomadโ€. I think itโ€™s a great experience and highly recommend it to people. The โ€œforeverโ€ value you that you get out of it for just committing to a year is well worth it. That being said, it REALLY depends on your goals. I passionately dislike (trying to not use the word hate here lol) planning travels because itโ€™s way to time consuming, so itโ€™s great for me. I am also trying to build up my blogโ€™s brand and being a part of Remote Year has accelerated that for me, a LOT.

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@whereskristin | 4yr

How many (what %) of the people traveling on RY have an actual full time job online? Iโ€™ve heard itโ€™s mostly 20-something year olds partying and unemployed, living off savings, parents or borrowed money.

I can see how it would be a decent crash course in traveling for someone who hasnโ€™t done it before but I definitely think itโ€™s too expensive for an experienced remote worker whoโ€™s used to a lower cost of living, especially in the countries on the itinerary (some of the most affordable destinations in the world).

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@richardh | 4yr

That figures. Iโ€™m just bitter they made $1,250,000 from application fees alone, that seems dishonest - thereโ€™s no incentive to stop accepting applications, even if the final list has been decided.

Sorry we are full, I mean, please continue to apply.

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@whereskristin | 4yr

Yikesโ€ฆ when you put it that wayโ€ฆ for sure

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@katelynmsmith | 5yr

Hey! Iโ€™m currently on the first group of Remote Year and happy to share some insights.

Just on the conversations above, I am not 100% sure about other programs but RY 1 had at least 25,000 people apply. I think it was similar or more for RY 2 applications. And thanks for the kind words about our group so far :smile: We love meeting other digital nomads! If you are not up for the commitment of 1 year then I wouldnโ€™t suggest applying. Itโ€™s sad when people leave so as a participant I would prefer people only sign up if they are truly dedicated to the year. (You can opt out of months as well if you will be away).

What has been your experience overall?
Amazing!

Do you prefer this type of group travel over traveling alone or with 1-2 other people?
I have traveled with others and groups but this is my first go at life as a digital nomad. I do prefer the group. Itโ€™s nice to have the community and there is always someone that can join you in whatever you do. Iโ€™d imagine itโ€™s more lonely/a lot more work/effort doing it alone/

What are the pros and cons?
I break this out in my blog.

Pros:
The RY brand name and being associated with it. Itโ€™s helped with my blog and to snag some really amazing opportunities because everyone is fascinated by the program.

Literally you donโ€™t have to worry about anything. When we were in Koh Phangan, Thailand, the entire island had a power outage but we had our own dedicated internet line and a back up generator where we were stayingโ€ฆ When you arrive you have a sim card set up, they have a google map of all the places near by (restaurants, gyms, pharmacies etc). They have a small sheet with the name and locations of a nearby doctor. You literally unpack and youโ€™re done and settled. You donโ€™t have to find spots with good wifi etc. They provide a co-working space open 24/7.

A room to yourself the entire trip.

A vetted group. The group is amazing and you can tell they are vetted. They are very passionate about travel and this lifestyle but also really hardworking and itโ€™s great for networking.

IMO it looks really good on a resume as well.

Cons:
Costs. I am Canadian and the dollar sucks so it makes it a bit more pricey for me. Well worth though, hence why I am still on the program.

How professional and organized are the companies offering these services?
I would say Remote Year is very professional. They are passionate about what they are doing and want it to succeed so they are always looking to improve/ keep participants happy. At the same time they are personable and you can go out and grab a beer with one of them. Itโ€™s a tricky balance because they live with us but also run the program but I say they do a really good job at keeping the balance. I would also say they are organized too, especially since theyโ€™ve more so โ€œnailed down the processโ€. Keep in mind my group was the first so they hard to figure it out a bit as they went at first but that was expected being the first group. We knew we needed to be flexible for a bit as they adjusted. But now, it seems they really have their process nailed down.

Do people drop out?
We have had people drop out, yes. All for various reasons.

  • relationships (to be with a b/f, g/f / finding someone along the way)
  • between USD being pricey compared to other currencies and recessions in other countries some people had to drop out because they couldnโ€™t afford it anymore
  • job promotion (had to go home to sort it)
  • discovering they pref to travel alone (RY is great for people that hate planning trips, such as myself :wink: )

Would you do it again?
110% without a doubt. It has literally changed the course of my life and I have learned so much about myself and grown in so many ways. Itโ€™s been the most amazing life experience.

What is what you expected?
I literally knew nothing of this lifestyle. I didnโ€™t even know what co-working spaces were *gasp. I expected a ton of people in a hostel sharing rooms and working from their rooms or wherever. In all honestly my expectations were low - I had no idea what to expect I just wanted to travel the world in a sustainable way.

Did you save time/money?
Not quite sure what you mean here. I save time absolutely. Planning takes so much time. In terms of money, do you mean actually put money into a savings account while on the trip or that the trip itself is cheaper than doing it on your own? Either way, itโ€™s not cheaper. Remote Year isnโ€™t designed to โ€œsave moneyโ€. I would say Remote Year is for people who want the perks, benefits and ease of the program.

Was it a better overall experience than being a regular Digital Nomad?
I canโ€™t say, Iโ€™ve never been a digital nomad on my own.

What are accommodations like?
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCFBHegEsjH1v37gOB99sMiA This shows our accommodations in Cavtat, Croatia and Prague, Czech Republic (country 1). It has varied from hotel, dorm, apartment etc. They are moving towards apartment styling living now that they know our preference.

Is it worth the premium price?
Yes.

What would you change/improve about the experience?
Wow, great question. I would say more โ€œbeachy/natureโ€ locations. Weโ€™ve been in a lot of cities and I love nature so I would prefer that.

And I would say 6 weeks at a time instead of 1 month at a time because itโ€™s very fast paced. However 1 month is good because if you arenโ€™t โ€œfeelingโ€ a place itโ€™s not long before you leave and I think 6 weeks at a time would just make the program too long. 1 year is good. Trying to accommodate to 70 people with different thoughts and feelings about where they want to go makes 1 month ideal.

Any other feedback?
My blog has more information on the program etc but I donโ€™t want to come off as spammy so if you would like me to post it let me know and I will.

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@asimon1267 | 5yr

Iโ€™m joining Remote Year 2016 in February and would be glad to share my experience.

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@joaocunha | 5yr

I always wanted to be part of a program like that, but my personal experience with applying to Remote Year was very disappointing.

I got approved to the second phase of the application which requires me to pay a fee of $50 in order to proceed. Iโ€™m perfectly fine with that, they have to cover their costs, but there were no visits to my LinkedIn profile. Honestly, I found it a bit shady, so I e-mailed Greg about the paywall and how it works. No response. I e-mailed him again. Still no response up to this day.

After that, I felt a bit thrown away about the idea. Iโ€™ll have a look on similar programs, maybe theyโ€™ll treat applicants more seriously.

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@whereskristin | 5yr

Thatโ€™s pretty strangeโ€ฆ their stats say they have 50,000 applicants for 75 spots (although itโ€™s not clear if itโ€™s 50k total or per trip - there are RY 1-3 so far) so maybe they arenโ€™t really reading apps but just moving people to the next round for the $50 fee. Doesnโ€™t make much sense that they would ask for profiles and not look at them if they have a team to vet applicants. Hmm

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@joaocunha | 5yr

That is the point. Iโ€™m fine with them making profit out of what you pay on the program, but I find it shady to make profit over applications. Thatโ€™s just my personal opinion, of course, and while it can be fine from a business perspective, I was way more disappointed with the lack of communication about it from their end.

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@caseyr | 5yr

Hey Kristin,

Iโ€™m one of the people behind Hacker Paradise. Will answer some of your questions below. I may be a bit biased, so will avoid questions where Iโ€™m obviously not a good fit to answer. Hopefully some of our participants will come through and post about their experience as well :smile:

Do you prefer this type of group travel over traveling alone or with 1-2 other people?
Personally, I think itโ€™s great to travel with a group like Hacker Paradise for 3-6 months per year. Thereโ€™s definitely still a place for solo travel, which gives you more flexibility and serendipity. In my ideal world, Iโ€™d probably alternate between the two experiences.

What are the pros and cons?
Pros: having awesome people around all the time, collaborating professionally with people, learning from people, having other people around who are serious and working during the day and arenโ€™t just there to travel and party

Cons: less flexibility - you canโ€™t just on a whim decide to head to a new country or go backpacking through the wilderness for a few days.

Do people drop out?
Weโ€™ve had a few people for whom it wasnโ€™t a good fit and who left early, but most people stay for their whole time or extend their stay. Weโ€™ve had 130+ people thus far.

What is what you expected?
It is kind of hard for me to answer this question, but it is something we ask people who come on our trips. Most of the time, their answer is that it wasnโ€™t what they expected, but it was f***ing awesome.

Did you save time/money?
I think this depends. If your hourly rate is super high, you might technically save money by traveling with us and having us handle coworking, housing, etc. However, weโ€™re definitely more expensive than handling it on your own. The people who come on our trips find sufficient value in the community (both personally & professionally) to justify the extra price.

Was it a better overall experience than being a regular Digital Nomad?
Iโ€™d say itโ€™s different. Both are valuable.

What are accommodations like?
This varies from place to place. For our next trip in Southeast Asia, weโ€™re renting out a bunch of rooms in hotels in a couple cities and a bunch of serviced apartments in another.

Anyways, happy to talk more if you have further questions - just shoot me a line or reach out on Twitter: @hackerparadise

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@whereskristin | 5yr

Thanks for the detailed input! I agree that a balance of being able to travel alone but also with a group like Hacker Paradise would be ideal. Iโ€™ll definitely join in at some point over the next year.

I also think itโ€™s extremely valuable to have someone planning everything out, because of how many resources and time are spent inherently on travel planning and logistics as a nomad.

How would you classify the accommodations from 1-5 stars?

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@caseyr | 5yr

As I mentioned before, accommodations varies from destination to destination. Send me a DM and Iโ€™d be happy to share the specific places weโ€™ll be heading on our upcoming trip.

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@whereskristin | 5yr

Iโ€™m in touch with you guys on email (Izzy from Hacker Paradise?)

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@flyonthewall | 5yr

@kristinm_wilson You donโ€™t have to commit to anything up front :slight_smile: Just spend a month anywhere that Remote Year is spending a month in and you can hang out with them. The founders and employees are pretty cool people and the group numbers around 70+ so there are plenty of people to meet and interact with.

You could โ€˜caravanโ€™ with them even if youโ€™re not part of the program. Just get an AirBNB in the same city or something. Iโ€™ve considered meeting up with them again somewhere later either in Japan or South America. Their itinerary is known in advance so planning this is fairly easy for an independent digital nomad.

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@whereskristin | 5yr

Good point. There are also supposed to be 3 trips ongoing for 2016 so never a lack of people to meet!

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@flyonthewall | 5yr

Iโ€™ve met a few people from remote year while traveling. They seemed happy with the experience but were always curious about the expenses of independent travel. Remote Year charges about $2000 per month and a joining fee so the total comes out to be around $27,000 per year.

For me, that is way more than what independent travel or nomading needs to cost. Bear in mind, this does not include food. Just flights and lodging and some kind of co-working arrangement. Also, due to this being their first year the accommodations have been a bit hit or miss.

You could easily travel/nomad independently for that much. Is it worth paying so much to meet and travel with โ€˜coolโ€™ people chosen by others? You decide.

If you have anxiety issues managing your own travel arrangements or get lonely easily itโ€™s definitely worth it. Especially if youโ€™re afraid to โ€˜take the leapโ€™.

I would just use the extra cash to sign up for classes etc. in various destinations to meet people. Plus for that much money I can have a comfortable AirBNB vs. co-living arrangements which can often be hit or miss.

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@whereskristin | 5yr

Agreed. These are all really good points. Thanks to @levelsio for making it so easy to do a quick study on cost of living and rental rate ranges with Nomad List - something that used to take a significant amount of research in the past.

Of course, any business model needs to be profitable, Remote Year included, but it is quite expensive when considering the actual cost of living in the destinations on the itinerary and the types of accommodations provided. That being said, people are paying for the convenience and implied peace of mind that having a comprehensive travel planner for a year provides (in addition to the community, cowork factor and some of the travel expenses).

I think all of us understand the amount of time, research and logistics that go into planning an around-the-world work trip. There is significant value in having someone do it for you so you can focus on working instead of getting bogged down in travel arrangements. From what Iโ€™ve seen of the participant blogs and videos, most seem to be learning about the digital nomad lifestyle for the first time. Itโ€™s probably a fantastic way to get started but maybe could be considered a bit restrictive for long term nomad veterans. I definitely see both sides.

I suppose in the end itโ€™s a personal choice but definitely helps to shed some light by discussing pros and cons with other experienced remote workers.

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@levelsio | 5yr

@alexeymk and @Casey_Rosengren from Hacker Paradise are on here, maybe they can ask some participants to share

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@whereskristin | 5yr

Thanks! Iโ€™ve googled a lot and I only found maybe one thing on Reddit but very general.

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@jayzus | 5yr

I spent about 5 months with Hacker Paradise and it was fantastic. I definitely much prefer traveling in a group than by myself. I also visited Remote Year in Slovenia for a few days and they seemed cool too. I personally donโ€™t like committing to a full year. I think itโ€™s worth the premium price for a vetted group of great people to travel with, as well as unique events. This summer in Hacker Paradise, we met the CIO of Estonia and had a meetup at Typeformโ€™s office in Barcelona. I missed out on it, but they recently met up with patio11 and the creator of Ruby in Japan. Iโ€™ve been telling them to post more stuff, but you can see some of what theyโ€™re doing at https://twitter.com/hackerparadise and https://www.instagram.com/hackerparadise/.

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@whereskristin | 5yr

I definitely feel partial to the idea of meeting up for a month or a few months while continuing to retain the regular freedom of the nomad lifestyle. Iโ€™ve been traveling pretty much by myself for about 10 years so Iโ€™m attracted to the idea of having a mobile community for once. We all know that being a solo traveler for an extended period of time, especially years, can be isolating. At the same time Iโ€™m also a bit wary of committing to something so significant up front. Hacker Paradise sounds like a good mix of freedom and flexibility. Thank you for weighing in!

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Read and participate in 13,918 discussions on Nomad List

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Anyone wants to learn to sail in the Mediterranean? (Sep or Oct)

 

by @viktor | 5d 5 days ago | 1 comment

I'm thinking about taking a sailing (yachting) course in the Mediterranean Sea this coming September or October. Thus far from my research, it seems that most courses are held in locations with not many digital nomads. My thinking is that it would be more fun to go to a place with like-minded people. Therefore, I'm wondering if anyone else is interested in taking a sailing course in the Mediterranean this fall? If not, do you know a location that offers good sailing courses, where there is also many digital nomads / nomad infrastructure?

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Bali to focus on attracting remote workers when the island reopens for tourism


by @levelsio | 19d 18 days ago | 0 comments

When reopening for tourism, Bali says it will focus on attracting remote workers to choose the island as their workplace:

"We will focus on a new pattern of how Bali is not just for leisure, but indeed to work in Bali as well"

thebalisun.com/bali-tourism-will-target-digital-nomads-and-those-who-work-online/

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Bali to focus on attracting remote workers when the island reopens for tourism


by @levelsio | 19d 18 days ago | 0 comments

When reopening for tourism, Bali says it will focus on attracting remote workers to choose the island as their workplace:

"We will focus on a new pattern of how Bali is not just for leisure, but indeed to work in Bali as well"

thebalisun.com/bali-tourism-will-target-digital-nomads-and-those-who-work-online/

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Any attorneys working remotely?


by @rohitsn | 22d 21 days ago | 3 comments

Transactional Attorney with a focus on US Immigration. Burnt out doing the law firm thing. Trying to leverage skill to get on this digital nomad tip. Love the traveling experience, hostels, seeing new places, new cocktails etc etc.

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Any attorneys working remotely?


by @rohitsn | 22d 21 days ago | 3 comments

Transactional Attorney with a focus on US Immigration. Burnt out doing the law firm thing. Trying to leverage skill to get on this digital nomad tip. Love the traveling experience, hostels, seeing new places, new cocktails etc etc.

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Where should I set up my company as a remote worker?


by @beloruchka | 24d 23 days ago | 5 comments

Iโ€™m looking for any recommendations for services or people others have used to get answers on the best place to set up their businesses based on their personal circumstances.

Leaning towards Singapore after a ton of research, but would really like some concrete advice before jumping in.

Appreciate it!

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Where should I set up my company as a remote worker?


by @beloruchka | 24d 23 days ago | 5 comments

Iโ€™m looking for any recommendations for services or people others have used to get answers on the best place to set up their businesses based on their personal circumstances.

Leaning towards Singapore after a ton of research, but would really like some concrete advice before jumping in.

Appreciate it!

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What do you use to work together remotely?


by @artofwarbiz | 3mo 2 months ago | 6 comments

What do you use to work together remotely with your team?

I know Slack, Hipchat and Hall.

Which ones do you guys use and why?

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What do you use to work together remotely?


by @artofwarbiz | 3mo 2 months ago | 6 comments

What do you use to work together remotely with your team?

I know Slack, Hipchat and Hall.

Which ones do you guys use and why?

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What have been your biggest challenges working remotely in your team?


by @wanderer | 3mo 2 months ago | 2 comments

My interest in DN lifestyle started when half of our company have been taking 1 month for remote work @ Ko Samui. It was truly cool but we observed quite some communication challenges. Communication seemed just โ€œriskierโ€ when online.

What were your worst situations caused by misunderstanding while communicating online with your teammates? What do you do to avoid misunderstandings?

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What have been your biggest challenges working remotely in your team?


by @wanderer | 3mo 2 months ago | 2 comments

My interest in DN lifestyle started when half of our company have been taking 1 month for remote work @ Ko Samui. It was truly cool but we observed quite some communication challenges. Communication seemed just โ€œriskierโ€ when online.

What were your worst situations caused by misunderstanding while communicating online with your teammates? What do you do to avoid misunderstandings?

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Anyone want to share an airbnb villa in Mexico?


in Mexico by @wouternomad | 4mo 4 months ago | 1 comment

I will be traveling/working through Mexico with my dog February to April. My plan is to stay in Sayulita for about 2-4 weeks, then travel south along the cost.

Is there anyone who wants to share an airbnb apartment? I was thinking of renting a private villa, but because these are large and have multiple rooms, I was wondering if there are fellow nomads wanting to share? Iโ€™m open to other locations as well (Puerto Vallerta, Oaxaca, and everything in between these two locations.

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Has anyone created a list of co-living spaces around the world?


by @keegansard | 4mo 4 months ago | 4 comments

Iโ€™m a big believer in co-living but Iโ€™m finding hard to find all the options available in different cities.

I have found the major players like Roam, The Collective, and WeLive but havenโ€™t found many others.

Has anyone seen a list or should I start making one?

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Anyone know an accountant for Canadian nomads/expats?


by @noam_lightstone | 6mo 6 months ago | 16 comments

Hey guys, this was my first year as a Canadian nomad.

As far as I know of, Canadians donโ€™t pay taxes if they do not live in the country for 6 months.

But Iโ€™d like to talk to an accountant or someone who does Canadian taxes specifically for expats and nomads to get clear on the rules and for help on my return coming up.

Does anyone know someone who specializes in Canada who can help? Iโ€™ve seen plenty of US recommendations but none for us canucks.

Thanks guys!

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Has anyone been terminated by Project Fi?


by @jackgopack | 7mo 6 months ago | 15 comments

Any long terms Project Fi users cancelled?

Planning on being outside of the US for a year or more and disappointed to just discover their โ€œtermination for excessive international roamingโ€ fine print (similar to T-Mobileโ€™s) as follows:

โ€œThe Services must be primarily used in the United States and are not intended for extended international use. Further, the Services are designed for use predominantly within our network. If your usage outside our network is excessive, abnormally high, or cause us to incur too much cost, we may, at our option and sole discretion, suspend your Project Fi account, terminate your service, or limit your use of roaming.โ€

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What's the first step now that I can work remotely?


by @mariaplslourdes | 9mo 9 months ago | 4 comments

Hi everyone and nice to e-meet you!
finally, after so long I found a job that allows me to work remotely.
But now? Do you have any practical advice that I can use to approach this new world?
In particular, I have to put my tax situation in order, do you know a good tax advisor from whom I can ask for advice? (Iโ€™m Italian but I live in Franceโ€ฆI donโ€™t know how long it will beโ€ฆ) )
Beyond that, any advice is welcome.
Thank you!
Maria

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What's the first step now that I can work remotely?


by @mariaplslourdes | 9mo 9 months ago | 4 comments

Hi everyone and nice to e-meet you!
finally, after so long I found a job that allows me to work remotely.
But now? Do you have any practical advice that I can use to approach this new world?
In particular, I have to put my tax situation in order, do you know a good tax advisor from whom I can ask for advice? (Iโ€™m Italian but I live in Franceโ€ฆI donโ€™t know how long it will beโ€ฆ) )
Beyond that, any advice is welcome.
Thank you!
Maria

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Recommendations for UK/Scotland accountants that understand remote businesses?


by @eduardoyi | 1yr 1 year ago | 1 comment

Looking for recommendations for reliable accountants who understand how remote businesses with off-shore freelancers and clients work. Thanks!

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Recommendations for UK/Scotland accountants that understand remote businesses?


by @eduardoyi | 1yr 1 year ago | 1 comment

Looking for recommendations for reliable accountants who understand how remote businesses with off-shore freelancers and clients work. Thanks!

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Can anyone recommend a good Spanish language learning program in Alicante or Valencia?


in Valencia, Spain by @charliemartel | 1yr 1 year ago | 0 comments

Iโ€™m looking to spend 1-3 months in Alicante or Valencia this fall and would like to take a Spanish class there.

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