For Young Chinese, 2021 Is The Year Of The Digital Nomad

YUNNAN, Southwest China — When Hu Shuguang, a 26-year-old software program engineer, heard his onboarding course of at Google’s Tokyo workplace had been pushed again a 12 months as a consequence of COVID-19, he couldn’t have been extra delighted.

He shortly determined to reject Google’s supply to quiet down quickly at its Beijing or Shanghai campus. As an alternative, he hit the highway.

I at all times dreamed of touring whereas working, and the pandemic gave me an exquisite alternative to take action. - Hu Shuguang, digital nomad

For the previous few months, Hu has been working for the corporate from a collection of unique places: a beachside bar on the tropical island of Hainan, a café within the historic metropolis of Zhenyuan, and a mountaintop hostel within the southwestern Yunnan province. “I at all times dreamed of touring whereas working, and the pandemic gave me an exquisite alternative to take action,” Hu tells Sixth Tone. “So long as the wi-fi connection is secure, I can work with my colleagues throughout three continents anytime.” Hu is considered one of a small, however rising variety of Chinese language millennials reinventing themselves as “digital nomads,” incomes a dwelling on-line whereas roaming the nation. Hu Shuguang works remotely, in Hainan province, March 2021 (left), and Yunnan province, April 2020 (proper). Diana Li for Sixth Tone

Earlier than the pandemic, the digital nomad way of life was virtually extraordinary in China. Baidu, the nation’s hottest search engine, reveals solely a handful of outcomes associated to the time period “digital nomads” posted earlier than 2020 — most of them translations of abroad weblog posts.

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