Traveling blogger surely must be one of the best jobs out there: you get to spend time doing something you love, but in incredible, exotic locations.
This career choice also has many benefits: it increases your productivity and happiness levels, reduces stress and helps you to save money.
Sometimes, however, us remote workers and traveling bloggers need a hand with our productivity. It’s easy to become detached from your work when you’re living abroad in a beautiful setting, and globetrotting bloggers can often struggle to find their rhythm.
Luckily, there are all sorts of useful tools out there that can help you to work efficiently and be as productive as possible.
I’ve compiled a list below of the six most useful tools I’ve discovered while working remotely. All of these resources have helped me hugely over the years to keep me on track with work and writing awesome blog posts.
Whether you’re new to the world of blogging or an experienced writer, check out the list below to help you stay focused and productive while you’re traveling.
Recommended reading: 10 Blogging Distractions That Harm Your Blog Efforts
Slack is a really useful tool that helps you to keep connected with your employers, clients or other team members when you’re working abroad.
It’s technically a messaging app, though it’s a whole lot better than just using Facebook or WhatsApp.
I’ve used Slack throughout my career — when I’ve been working abroad or just from home — and it’s always helped me hugely when working with other people. I really believe that good communication is key!
By staying in close contact with the people you’re working with, you can increase your productivity and keep your channels of communication open. No time wasted on misunderstandings and delayed responses here!
Slack lets you organize your conversations into different topics or projects so that you can keep track of what’s going on without getting muddled and having to switch conversations each time. You can also file share and integrate other remote tools such as Google Docs, so that all of your work channels are aligned. Pretty handy.
2. World Time Buddy
If you’re working abroad in any industry, then it’s always good to have some sort of time difference tool. After all, you could be living in Bangkok and working with someone who lives in Berlin or Boston.
I’ve been lucky enough to work in incredible countries around the world, while collaborating with agencies based in various other locations to me. This is when tools like World Time Buddy — a cross between a ‘world clock, a time zone converter, and an online meeting scheduler’ (in their own words) — really come into their own.
This is a super useful tool for the traveling blogger because it helps you to easily compare time zones and plan your working day. It’s good to know what time it is with your colleagues or clients so that you know each other’s availability and can coordinate meetings more easily.
You can add various locations to the tool, schedule meetings and share with the people you need to.
The dream of working abroad is one that so many people spend their days thinking about, but they never take the leap. But trust me, it’s worth it! Rethinking the 9-to-5 working day is key to becoming a digital nomad, and tools like Work Time Buddy mean you can enjoy amazing beaches, delicious food a fascinating culture while collaborating with people back home.
If you’re going to effectively manage your working day as a traveling blogger, then you need to invest in a time management tool like Toggl.
Toggl is great because it lets you track the amount of time you’re spending on set projects or tasks. This is very useful if you’re working with various agencies as a writer or as part of a wider — after all, tracking your hours accurately means getting paid accurately! All you have to do is log what you’re working on right now, and press the start button (and then stop the timer once you’ve finished).
Even if you’re currently working solo on your own project, Toggl is perfect for identifying trouble areas and time inefficiencies. You may not have even realized that you’d spent so much time doing one thing, but Toggl really helps you to visualize how each minute is spent with clear and colorful charts.
Toggl also has a dashboard and reporting which you can sync up with the rest of your team (if you work in one) so that you can see how long you’re spending on specific campaigns and projects.
Evernote is a really useful app for all bloggers: it’s basically an organizer, planner and note-taking app all in one. You can use it to make to-do lists, scribble down ideas, save links to online articles, or take photos of any images or handwritten documents.
Sounds great, doesn’t it?
As a blogger, I find Evernote awesome for logging any great resources and inspirational ideas I have — whenever that may be. You can add Evernote to your phone and sync up all of your devices so that if inspiration strikes when you’re on the move, you can quickly write it down before the idea floats away!
By collecting all of the things you need in one handy space — as well as providing a space for planning your work schedule — Evernote helps you focus and promotes productivity. No more flapping and scurrying around trying to retrieve links and lists from a million tabs on your computer.
If you’re part of a team, then you can pay a bit extra for the Evernote Business plan, which provides a centralized space for team members to share information, notes and other material.
Recommended reading: Evernote – My Second Brain
Trello is an online tool which helps you to manage your tasks and your time effectively. It’s simple to use and has an attractive color-coded dashboard to help you visualize your workload and prioritize urgent tasks.
I’m a very visual person, and Trello’s brightly colored theme really helps me to track and manage projects much better. It’s really flexible and has drag and drop functionality, so you can customize your Trello dashboard however you want.
As a traveling blogger, this will definitely help you to spend your time more productively. All of your to-do lists and project management can be easily stored on one simple, visual dashboard.
Trello is great for the solo freelancer, but it’s also really awesome if you’re remote-working as part of a bigger team. You can create a team dashboard for any collaborations, and because Trello works in real-time, you’ll always be up-to-date on what your co-workers are doing.
I’ve often found that if I’m working remotely and not in an office environment, time can fly by without me even noticing. Whether it’s in a co-working space, cafe or hostel, it’s all too easy to get distracted and this means that productivity levels can drop.
If you’re worried about this too, then check out Pomodoro.
Time and time again, this amazing tool has helped me to manage my day more successfully and become more productive! It’s the Pomodoro Technique in its rawest form, with a timer and a to-do list that you can update.
If you haven’t heard of it before, the Pomodoro Technique is a time management method (developed by Francesco Cirillo in the 1980s) which uses a timer to break up your work into intervals — traditionally 25 minutes — separated by small breaks. By breaking your time up into bite-size chunks, it boosts your productivity; your day and workload seem more manageable, and you’ll be able to get a lot more done.
I found this particularly useful when I first started out blogging and was struggling to get into a rhythm with my writing.
There are various Pomodoro tools available for free (or very cheap) so find one that suits you. Some are online pages, and some are apps that you can download to your phone or computer. You can find Pomodoro tools with added features too, such as integration with Trello, reporting dashboards or client attribution.
Become a Productive Traveling Blogger
Becoming a digital nomad isn’t always easy. Between sorting visas, booking hostels, planning flights, and all the other little things you need to travel, you also need to stay on top of your work at the same time. And that’s not to mention the inevitable homesickness!
But being a traveling blogger is a rewarding job that I wouldn’t trade for the world. And thankfully, there are some amazing tools available that can help keep you motivated and productive, wherever you are in the world. The tools listed above are just a few of my favorites — they’re easy-to-use, effective, and can make your digital nomad job that much easier.
Are there any others you would add to this list?
Let me know in the comments below!