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Digital Nomads Like Greece But More Needs to Be Done

All the more digital nomads are warming up to Greece but more needs to be done to establish the country as a remote working destination, according to the conclusions of the 1st Digital Mobilities Conference organized this week by the Digital Nomads Observatory.

Though Athens is gaining ground as a remote working destination taking hands-on actions in this direction, Greece overall still lags behind.

The Greek capital was listed 48th among 80 destinations worldwide garnering a score of 71.23 out of 100 in a study titled “Cities Best Facilitating Remote Work” carried out by WorkMotion. Athens got points for its digital nomad visa, tax incentives, political stability and security.

In a recent HSBC survey, Greece ranked high for “wellbeing”.

Greece’s Digital Nomads Visa

Athens, Greece. Photo: Maria Theofanopoulou

Athens, Greece. Photo: Maria Theofanopoulou

Speaking during the online event, Alternate Foreign Affairs Minister Militiadis Varvitsiotis said Greece’s Digital Nomads Visa running under the ministry’s “Blue Carpet Policy” provided “easy, functional, accessible, and a secure framework for Greece to attract digital nomads”.

According to Varvitsiotis, Greece was winning remote workers due to “the good quality of life it offers, the exceptional weather, the cheap cost of living, the increased capabilities of its human resources, the administrative adequacy of the state mechanism, but also the competitive tax framework that has been created especially for these employees”, he said.

In view of the rising demand, the ministry, Varvitsiotis said, had gone ahead and introduced the Digital Nomads Visa to attract high-income workers.

According to other conference findings, Greece still needs to improve its position as a digital workers hub by tapping into a series of “tools”. Among these is Rebrain Greece, a government-run program connecting specialized employees with businesses in Greece.

Field experts add that Greece’s sea and sun “is not enough” to attract and keep remote workers. Greek authorities must create the conditions for digital nomad communities, relevant actions and initiatives, synergies between hoteliers and accommodation providers, attractive package deals, fast and reliable internet capabilities, as well as easy access to a working visa. 

Greece also needs to make strides in the creation of coworking spaces which are still few and far between compared to other destinations as well as relevant support facilities such as 24-hour mini markets and pharmacies.

In Greece, coworking spaces are currently operating in Athens, Thessaloniki, Patra, Heraklion, Rethymno, Chania, Volos, Lefkada, Kalamata and Mytilini.

According to conference findings, Greece stands to benefit greatly if it manages to attract digital nomads. Indicatively, one nomad working from an Aegean island spent 41 percent of his income on accommodation, 29 percent on food, 12 percent on entertainment, 10 percent on travel and 8 percent workplace expenses.

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About the Author
Chicago-born and raised, Maria Paravantes has over two decades of journalistic experience covering tourism and travel, gastronomy, arts, music and culture, economy and finance, politics, health and social issues for international press and media. She has worked for Reuters, The Telegraph, Huffington Post, Billboard Magazine, Time Out Athens, the Athens News, Odyssey Magazine and, among others. She has also served as Special Advisor to Greece’s minister of Foreign Affairs, and to the mayor of Athens on international press and media issues. Maria is currently a reporter, content and features writer for GTP Headlines.

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