Despite the weak economy, Greece has slowly been turning into a top destination for entrepreneurs, remote workers and digital nomads. The growth of Facebook groups, blogs and websites on the subject is only proof that Greece is a hotspot for a whole group of remote workers. Here is why.
With its rich history, strong culture and perfect weather, Greece is a great compromise for remote workers looking for some sea and sun while not having to jump on a plane for 10 hours to get back to their homeland. With the perfect combination of sea and mountain, cities, islands and small villages, Greece seriously has a lot to offer.
Sitting at the edge of Europe and Asia, Greece is a rich melting point of history, culture and food and an ideal base to more than 30 destinations across the two continents, thanks to low-cost companies and extensive coverage. Besides the country itself, the marvelous islands, many archaeological wonders and points of interest provide an inspiring backdrop to a generation of workers tired of being stuck behind four walls.
Greece has one of the lowest costs of living in the EU, though Athens is generally considered more expensive than many other places. Nonetheless, rent (thank you Airbnb), utilities, groceries, public transport are reasonably affordable compared to many other European capitals, which certainly plays in favor of Greece.
Of course, one of the highest, if not highest parameters for a remote worker is the internet connectivity. As such, internet connectivity is actually great in most places, according to Nomadlist, it ranges from nine MBPS (in Patras) to 13 MBPS (Santorini and Mykonos). Granted, it may not be as great as others cities in Europe, but it is certainly good.
Compared to a lot of European countries, Greece is a safe nation. Of course, you may encounter the occasional pickpocket on the public transport, but all in all, Greece, and even Athens, is particularly safe for travelers, digital nomads and entrepreneurs.
Okay, this may be sound stupid for some, but for those of us who are not early risers, this means a lot. Greece’s time zone is UTC+02:00. This means, it is seven hours ahead of EST, so if your company is based in North America, your work day will start around 4 pm. Greece is also seven hours behind Tokyo and five behind Beijing time, which means that if you are doing business with Asia, you may have to wake up early but you would be done around noon as well. Finally, if you are working with a company based in Europe, you will be one or two hours ahead of their work schedule, and that, my friends, is certainly non-negligible.
Any digital nomad would agree: there is nothing like a hardcore party after working hard. Whether you opt for the Greek capital, Thessaloniki, Corfu, Rhodes, Patras, Rethymnon or Mykonos, Greece boasts a dynamic nightlife and Greeks know how to party and will certainly show you how to have a great time, without going bankrupt.
Co-working spaces may not be as frequent as in other western countries, but since Greece is the kind of place where you can sit and drink a coffee for three hours, you won’t have a hard time finding a café from where to work. Whether you are in Athens or in a laidback island, cafés (with wi-fi) are legion in Greece. Plus, since Greece enjoys a late-night culture, you won’t have trouble finding a café still opened after 7 PM for your “morning” Skype call to your client in Boston.
Fueled by creativity and incubators, start-ups have been growing like mushrooms in recent years. Furthermore, increasing numbers of people are leaving their 9-5 jobs to work for themselves and follow their dreams, whether it is opening a new bar or owning a food truck. As such, there are excellent networking opportunities, Facebook groups (check out groups like Work Remote in Greece or Digital Nomads Athens) and several meetups where digital nomads and remote workers can connect with like-minded individuals.