Embracing the Digital Nomad Lifestyle in Krabi, Thailand

While our first stop in Thailand was Phuket, my travel buddy and I were not enticed by the built-up and pricey peninsula. So 14 hours after arriving in Phuket we headed for nearby Krabi- and wow, am I so glad we left.

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The beautiful road to my hostel

The Ao Nang hostel we chose was among the best hostels of my life. From the speedy wifi to the open-air, banana-stocked common room it was the perfect place to throw myself into my work. And work I did: After a slow summer of blogging I had to play a lot of catch-up, as well as tackle a hefty workload with my French Category Expert job for Answers.com.

As of this month I am making enough money to support myself on my travels (as long as I travel somewhere inexpensive), and it makes me really proud to say that. But between 20 articles a month for Answers and 4 posts a week on Ashley Abroad, I don’t think I’ve ever typed this much.

Krabi is the perfect place to work- I’m now a serious fan of Krabi holidays. But a part of me feels guilty- why did I come all the way to Thailand to sit around and work 12-hour days on my laptop? I’m realizing more and more that the go-go-go pace of my younger years will be impossible to maintain on this trip. I’ll need to travel slower, stay places longer and will be at the mercy of fast wifi connections.

And while there are certainly some downsides to the digital nomad lifestyle, there are so many pluses. All I can do now is work hard and enjoy life in Thailand- there are worse things than rewarding a long day of work with a  $6 massage or a couple of Chang beers. I’ve got money and time and all of Asia to explore- so slow is the way I will go. 

Have you ever worked as a digital nomad? Do you have any tips for me going forward?

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About Ashley Fleckenstein

Ashley is a travel and lifestyle blogger who lives in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Since college she has au paired in Paris, backpacked the world solo, and lived in Uganda. Her work has been featured by Buzzfeed, Forbes, TripAdvisor, and Glamour Magazine.

30 thoughts on “Embracing the Digital Nomad Lifestyle in Krabi, Thailand”

  1. I absolutely hated Phuket. Krabi (and especially Ao Nang) were so much nicer. Loved it! Spent lots of time at Chang Bar in the evenings. Loads of fun :)

  2. Sounds like you are making the right decisions. And you do have a work load! Be sure to get plenty of rest… Stay well. Love, Gamma

  3. I am never able to accomplish anything while I’m traveling, so I am very impressed with all the writing you are getting done. It’s hard to sit back and work when you are on vacation, but I suppose with long-term travel you hvae to adjust your mindset.

    • I definitely never used to do a thing when I traveled so I had plenty of time to truly relax and experience the place I was in… while I would be nice to do that again, I guess the benefit is that I can relax more in terms of budget than I used to. There are always pros and cons for sure but as long as you find a good balance :)

  4. I’m with Alex, above – I can’t work while traveling (unless I’m literally traveling for work!). I guess that it gets easier with practice. Once I notice I’m running out of money for bread, I’d probably start getting things done.

    I’m glad you’re doing well!

    • I’m a huge procrastinator so I could really see myself cranking out work at the eleventh hour if I really needed money… hopefully I’ll be able to budget my time a bit better than usual though! :)

  5. Wow – that’s amazing to be able to support yourself by writing. One day I’d love to do that – until then I’ll be teaching ESL intermittently :)

  6. Krabi is definitely the place to be. I heard about it from friends but this post confirmed my thoughts! I hope I find time to visit it this year. I would definitely love it. Thanks for sharing your experience!

  7. When I found this article I was really hoping you found a co-working space in Krabi as it would be the perfect island getaway. I’m currently in Chiang Mai and LOVE it but nothing beats being near a beach, scuba diving and the ocean.

    • Krabi was really nice! I was there in September though, which was definitely the wrong time- it was really rainy and dead. I’d love to visit Chiang Mai so it’s good to hear you’re loving it!

  8. Johnny FD, I was also hoping to find some information about a co-working space in Krabi. Also in Chiang Mai actually.

    Thank you for reading your article Ashley. Let us know, if you have any information about co-working spaces in Krabi.

  9. If you like a relaxed pace of life, then you’ll probably enjoy Chiang Mai. There are a few co-working spaces where you can focus your time on work. and there’s also hundreds of coffee shops if you’d prefer to move around and work in different parts of the city on different days.

  10. Since your stay, there is now a dedicated coworking space that has opened in Ao Nang, called Phansa.Space. It’s a great environment to get some work done and meet other like minded individuals during your stay. Very fast Wi-Fi even for demanding tasks such as uploading video and the staff are very friendly and knowledgeable about the area. They even have some good recommendations on accommodations and things to do in the area.

    • Hello! I am interested in digital nomad-ing in Thailand and looking at Krabi. I am trying to find more info on Phansa.Space because I will be there with a group and cannot find contact info online – looks like it might be closed. Any info especially from Colin who visited there would be very much appreciated!

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