Mathilde is 26 years old and works in marketing and communication for an online platform in the cinema and audiovisual sector. She sent us her testimonial after reading this article:
Mathilde had already tasted expatriation during a stay in Italy during her studies within the framework of the Erasmus program and was curious to see if she could again live a similar experience but once in working life. Luckily, her employer guaranteed her to be able to work wherever she wanted and almost whenever she wanted, even if she adds: “That’s the theory, in practice it’s more complicated.” According to her, “live the digital nomad life and work [contraction de travail et vacances] is a very rewarding experience, but not for everyone”.
Mathilde works part-time for 21 hours a week, which leaves her more time for her hobbies. For her, going to work away from home in a holiday resort brought together “all the advantages of expatriation and holidays, meeting new cultures, discovery, gastronomy, the feeling of living like a local, the French salary (or which can also be a disadvantage depending on the country you choose) ”. It may even stir up jealousies or inspire others to follow in your footsteps.
Like any departure, you have to carry out a certain number of administrative procedures, even if this remains very minimal when you are a European national and you are leaving for an EU country. You also have to ask yourself the question of local integration, your language skills and, first and foremost of course, your destination:
“Officially, you can move to the other side of the world, but in reality, if you have several meetings a week or calls from colleagues, you will prefer to be in a time zone fairly close to the one in which you usually work (a friend is going to live in Chile for three weeks while working, she has planned to get up at 2 a.m., I will let you know… It’s up to you to decide if you prefer to work late in the morning and finish a little later or vice versa, start early and finish sooner.”
Off to Greece!
Mathilde didn’t take long to choose her destination. She dreamed of Greece and therefore chose to move there for four months. Only one hour difference with France, a very affordable cost of living, a welcoming population… All the criteria were met to optimize telework and personal life. Moreover, she did not stay in Athens and took advantage of her stay to see Crete, Mykonos, Naxos, Santorini, and Milos.
On the work side, how did it go? “I already imagine your question, she says : But did you really work? !” Here is his response:
“Well yes, imagine. I already had experience working remotely, so I had already acquired some discipline. If you are able to work from home, you are also able to work from abroad… and you are also able to enjoy the country in which you live.”
Moreover, the weekend, especially if you add one or two days off, becomes a real vacation. “It allows you to take your time, to travel more slowly. […] After all, no one asks us to return to France at the office on Monday to resume work?” rejoices Mathilde, who adds:
“The only downside is not being able to chat with your colleagues at the coffee machine on your weekend vacation, because you shouldn’t have any illusions, those who stayed in France don’t even want to know what you do with your days, or where you are. They don’t want to know because they would like to be there already.”
The young woman believes that this work experience in Greece was a success and intends to go back to live and telecommute abroad. It will be in September in the Canary Islands. And as she started her working day late and finished it late in Greece, she decided this time to test the “start early and end earlier” version. The goal? Work well and live well. And far.
Have you experienced working abroad? How did you experience this? What advice would you have liked to have had before departure? Tell us about your experience by writing to us at [email protected] and we will publish your testimony.