When even large digital companies like Airbnb embrace the "work from anywhere" policy, would-be digital nomads can hope for a better future. A future of work productive, serious, but where you want it. Maybe in Venice, why not. Or in Dubai.
Now there might be a pretty cool new entry: how about Bali's beautiful tropical beaches? Indonesian Tourism Minister Sandiaga Uno gave an interview to Bloomberg announcing the development of a new special visa for digital nomads.
Eat, pray, love, work
The Indonesian visa for "digital nomads" would be in effect for five years and would have a significant plus: Indonesia would not tax income received from abroad. Mind you, Bali is already a very attractive destination due to its magnificent climate and low cost of living. Tourists adore it (famous is the romantic portrait that the film "Eat, Pray, Love" made of her, with a Julia Roberts delighted by her views).
Tourism is one thing, however, work is another. Today, visitors to Bali can stay for up to 60 days, or jump through hoops to get a work permit for up to 6 months. Anyone who exceeds 183 days of stay in any case becomes a tax resident in Indonesia, and pays taxes there.
Of course, it is a rate of 35% for incomes exceeding € 350.000 per year. Much lower than USA or other countries. But it is higher, for example, than Dubai: there with a digital nomad visa (lasts one year) the income taxes are ZERO. Now do you understand why you see people working there more and more often?
Bali is well worth a mass
A visa like the one announced by the Indonesian minister would be a big blow to everyone. First of all for the digital nomads themselves, who would avoid legal tribulations and would regularize positions that today are at least "ambiguous".
They could benefit from the longest visa in the world (currently the maximum possible on the planet is 4 years).
Indonesia could also revive the local economy, relaunching another type of "tourism" for Bali, more permanent and of greater value. Covid has dealt a hard blow to the country's revenues, with attendance levels that may take decades to return to as before.
For this reason, the minister stresses that now the Bali strategy is to reach a reasonable number of visitors (3 or 4 million a year), focusing on a longer stay and greater spending.
Who better than digital nomads? Prepare flip flops, swimsuit and laptop.