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The Namibia Digital Nomad Visa is the country’s latest initiative to attract remote workers and boost its tourism economy. This guide covers everything you need to know about this exciting opportunity, including eligibility, the application process, and what life is like as a digital nomad in Namibia.
TL;DR: Namibia’s Digital Nomad Visa offers a 6-month stay, requiring proof of income and a simple online application. With WildWifi as your coliving base, you can enjoy the country’s natural beauty, wildlife, and cultural experiences while working remotely alongside other digital nomads and remote workers.
- Introduction to Namibia as a Digital Nomad Destination
- Namibia Digital Nomad Visa: A Quick Overview
- Eligibility and Requirements
- How to Apply: A Step-by-Step Guide
- Living in Namibia: Cost of Living and Lifestyle
- Working in Namibia: Coworking Spaces, Internet Connectivity, and Time Zones
- Exploring Namibia: Top Destinations and Attractions
- Activities and Experiences for Digital Nomads in Namibia
- Practical Tips for Digital Nomads in Namibia
- My Final Thoughts
1. Introduction to Namibia as a Digital Nomad Destination
Namibia is a country rich in natural beauty, cultural diversity, and unique landscapes. It’s becoming a super destination for digital nomads. As the government embraces the remote work revolution, the Namibia Digital Nomad Visa offers a great opportunity for remote workers to experience this captivating African nation.
Namibia’s history is a tapestry of cultural influences, from the ancient San people to the German colonial period. Independence in 1990 brought stability, and the country has since developed a thriving tourism industry. The Namibian government recognizes the potential of digital nomads to contribute to the nation’s economy and has, therefore, launched the Digital Nomad Programme to attract them.
The advantages of choosing Namibia as a digital nomad destination are numerous. From vast landscapes to wildlife-rich national parks, Namibia offers a perfect backdrop for those seeking a work-life balance. The low cost of living, friendly locals, and an improving internet infrastructure make it an attractive option for digital nomads.
2. Namibia Digital Nomad Visa: A Quick Overview
The Namibia Digital Nomad Visa is designed to enable remote workers to live and work in the country for up to six months. This visa offers several advantages over other digital nomad visa options:
- Affordable application fee: At just $124, the Namibia Digital Nomad Visa is one of the most cost-effective options available to remote workers.
- Flexibility: The visa allows holders to work, travel, and study in Namibia, providing the opportunity to fully immerse oneself in the country’s rich culture and stunning landscapes.
- Straightforward application process: Unlike some other digital nomad visas, applying for the Namibia Digital Nomad Visa doesn’t require scheduling an appointment with an embassy or consulate. The process can be completed entirely online.
The Namibian government launched the Namibia Digital Nomad Visa Program to offer travellers a chance to stay in the country longer, contributing to the local economy and enhancing cultural exchange. The digital nomad visa allows holders to work, travel, and study in the country for a maximum of six months.
How does it compare to other countries?
Compared to other digital nomad visas, the Namibia Digital Nomad Visa stands out due to its affordability and straightforward application process. Costing around $124, it’s accessible to many remote workers looking to explore the African continent. Additionally, the entire application process can be completed online, making it a hassle-free option for digital nomads.
The Namibia Digital Nomad Visa is particularly appealing to those who love nature and wildlife. As one of Africa’s premier destinations for wildlife viewing, Namibia is home to a vast population of cheetahs, elephants, rhinos, and various other species. The country’s pleasant climate allows for year-round travel, making it an attractive destination for remote workers who want to experience the African wilderness while maintaining their professional commitments.
In the next sections, we’ll discuss the eligibility criteria, requirements, and the step-by-step process for applying for the Namibia Digital Nomad Visa, giving you all the information you need to embark on your African adventure.
3. Eligibility Criteria for the Namibia Digital Nomad Visa
Before you start the application process for the Namibia Digital Nomad Visa, it’s essential to understand the eligibility criteria to ensure a smooth and successful application. The primary qualification for this visa revolves around income, ensuring that applicants can support themselves and their dependents during their stay in Namibia. Here are the income requirements to qualify for the visa:
- Single applicants must have a monthly income of more than $2,000 per month.
- For couples, the spouse should earn an income of at least $1,000 per month.
- If you are bringing your children, you need to have a budget of $500 per child each month.
For example, a family of four would need a combined monthly income of $4,000 to qualify for the Namibia Digital Nomad Visa.
Aside from the income requirements, there are no specific qualifications regarding profession, nationality, or age. As long as you meet the income criteria and can provide the necessary documentation, you are eligible to apply for the visa. It’s worth noting that the visa does not grant the right to seek employment in Namibia, as the purpose of the visa is to allow remote workers to continue working for clients or employers outside the country.
In the following section, we will discuss the necessary documents and the application process for obtaining the Namibia Digital Nomad Visa, helping you prepare for a seamless visa application experience.
4. Requirements and Application Process for the Namibia Digital Nomad Visa
Once you’ve confirmed your eligibility for the Namibia Digital Nomad Visa, it’s time to gather the required documents and begin the application process. Here’s a list of the necessary documents you need to submit for your application:
- Application form: Download the Namibia Digital Nomad Visa Application Form online. Fill out the form completely. If you are bringing dependents, fill out separate application forms for each of them.
- Medical certificate: Download the Medical Certificate form from the website of the Namibian embassy. Print and fill out the form. You also need this form for each dependent you will bring.
- Radiological report: Download the Radiological Report form from the website of the Namibian Embassy. You also need one for every dependent. Fill out the form.
- Passport copy: Submit a copy of your passport and the passport of your dependents.
- Proof of medical insurance: To live as a digital nomad in Namibia, you must have medical insurance or comprehensive travel insurance to cover any medical costs.
- Proof of income: As mentioned above, you need to submit documents proving that you meet the income requirements for yourself and any dependents.
- Bank statements: Submit a copy of your bank statements showing the past six months of transactions.
- Letter from employer: If you’re working for a company, submit a letter from your employer stating the nature of your job and that you are allowed to work remotely.
- Copies of qualifications: While not mandatory, it’s recommended to submit any documents of professional qualifications to support your application.
- Police clearance: Obtain a police clearance from your country of origin.
- Proof of contract: Sometimes, they may require you to submit an employment contract, so have this ready.
Once you’ve gathered all the necessary documents, follow these steps to apply for the Namibia Digital Nomad Visa:
- Complete the visa application forms: Fill out the visa application form, medical certificate, and radiological report. All these forms are available to download online. You also need these forms for every dependent you will bring into Namibia.
- Submit your application through email: Ensure you have digital copies of all the required documents and completed forms. Submit these documents to the following email address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Wait for your visa and make a payment: Upon visa approval, you will receive an email with a copy of your visa. A payment of around $124 for the visa processing fee will be required upon arrival in the country.
Now that you’ve learned about the eligibility, requirements, and application process for the Namibia Digital Nomad Visa, you’re well on your way to planning your stay in this incredible African destination. In the upcoming sections, we’ll delve into the experience of living as a digital nomad in Namibia, including housing options, internet connectivity, and exciting activities to enjoy during your time off.
5. The Digital Nomad Lifestyle in Namibia
Namibia is an up-and-coming destination for digital nomads, and with the introduction of the Namibia Digital Nomad Visa, it’s expected to see a surge in popularity among remote workers. In this section, we’ll explore various aspects of living as a digital nomad in Namibia, from accommodation and internet connectivity to leisure activities and attractions.
Accommodation Options in Windhoek
Most digital nomads choose to base themselves in Windhoek, Namibia’s capital city. This modern metropolis offers a wide range of accommodation options to suit different budgets and preferences. On average, you can expect to spend around $600 per month for a studio apartment in the city center. Windhoek is considered a safe place to live compared to many other African cities, with a stable government and low crime rates against foreign visitors.
Reliable Internet Connectivity
One of the primary concerns for digital nomads is reliable internet access. Fortunately, Namibia boasts a national network coverage of about 98%, ensuring that you won’t have issues attending Zoom meetings or completing work tasks. While internet speeds may vary depending on your location, Windhoek offers fast and reliable connectivity for a seamless remote work experience.
Exploring Namibia’s Natural Wonders
Namibia’s diverse landscape and unspoiled nature make it an ideal destination for nature-loving digital nomads. From the rolling dunes of the Namib Desert to the stunning coastal landscapes of Swakopmund, there’s always something new to discover. Etosha National Park, one of Africa’s premier wildlife destinations, is just a four-hour drive from Windhoek and offers the opportunity to spot a vast array of wildlife, including lions, elephants, and black rhinos.
Coastal Getaways in Swakopmund
If you’re craving some beach time, Swakopmund is the perfect coastal retreat. This charming town is home to beautiful beaches and a delightful mix of German colonial architecture. Spend a weekend exploring the town’s attractions or participate in adventure activities such as sandboarding, quad biking, or skydiving.
Embracing Local Culture and Cuisine
Immersing yourself in Namibia’s rich culture and history is an essential part of the digital nomad experience. Visit local markets, try traditional dishes, and engage with the friendly locals to gain a deeper understanding of the country’s customs and traditions. Don’t miss the opportunity to sample local delicacies such as kapana (grilled meat), mopane worms, and oshifima (maize porridge).
By choosing Namibia as your digital nomad destination, you’ll enjoy a unique and rewarding experience, combining a productive work environment with unforgettable adventures. As more and more remote workers discover the allure of Namibia, it’s poised to become a popular hotspot in the digital nomad community.
6. Working in Namibia: Coworking Spaces, Internet Connectivity, and Time Zones
As a digital nomad, your ability to work remotely hinges on finding suitable workspaces, reliable internet connectivity, and adapting to different time zones. In this section, we’ll explore the coworking scene in Namibia, discuss internet connectivity, and consider time zone adjustments for remote workers.
Coworking Spaces in Windhoek, Namibia
While the coworking culture in Namibia is still developing, there are a few options available for digital nomads, particularly in the capital city of Windhoek. These coworking spaces offer a range of facilities, such as high-speed internet, meeting rooms, and networking events.
- Regus in Maerua Mall – I’ve never been, but it looks like your standard professional/corporate space.
- The Village – great space with large tables and comfortable high-seat tables too. The cafe is good.
- Café Prestige – this is more of a cafe but has lots of seating and great coffee!
As the digital nomad community grows in Namibia, it’s likely that more coworking spaces will emerge, offering a broader range of options for remote workers.
Internet Connectivity in Namibia
Namibia has made significant strides in recent years to improve its internet infrastructure. The country now boasts that 85% of the population has access to 4G with LTE in all the cities, ensuring that digital nomads can stay connected in most locations. However, internet speeds can vary, particularly in rural areas, so it’s important to research the connectivity in your chosen destination.
In urban areas like Windhoek, you can expect fast and reliable internet connections, making it easier to participate in video conferences and complete online tasks. Many accommodations, cafes, and coworking spaces offer Wi-Fi, allowing you to work from various locations throughout the city.
Time Zone Considerations for Remote Workers
Namibia is located in the Central Africa Time (CAT) zone, which is 2 hours ahead of Coordinated Universal Time (UTC+2). Depending on your employer’s location or the time zones of your clients, you may need to adjust your work schedule to accommodate time differences.
For digital nomads working with teams or clients in North America or Europe, this time difference can be both a challenge and an opportunity. While you may need to schedule meetings and calls outside of your typical working hours, the time difference can also provide periods of uninterrupted work time, allowing you to focus on tasks without distractions.
By considering these factors and planning accordingly, you can ensure a productive and enjoyable remote work experience in Namibia. As the country’s digital nomad community continues to grow, you’ll find a supportive network of individuals who share your passion for remote work and adventure.
7. Exploring Namibia: Top Destinations and Attractions
Namibia is a land of diverse landscapes and unique attractions, making it a fantastic destination for digital nomads looking to explore the country during their free time. Here’s a quick overview of some must-see destinations and attractions in Namibia:
Etosha National Park
One of Africa’s premier wildlife destinations, Etosha National Park, is home to an incredible array of animals, including elephants, lions, leopards, and rhinos. A visit to this park offers unforgettable safari experiences and stunning landscapes.
Swakopmund is a charming coastal town with a unique blend of German colonial architecture and African flair. It’s an excellent base for exploring the nearby Namib Desert, and the town offers various activities, such as sandboarding, quad biking, and skydiving.
Sossusvlei and the Namib Desert
The iconic sand dunes of Sossusvlei are a must-see for any visitor to Namibia. These towering dunes, some of the highest in the world, offer incredible photo opportunities and an unforgettable desert experience.
Fish River Canyon
Fish River Canyon is the second-largest canyon globally and offers breathtaking views of the winding river and surrounding landscapes. Hiking enthusiasts can tackle the challenging 85-kilometre Fish River Canyon hiking trail, which takes about 4-5 days to complete.
The Skeleton Coast, named for the numerous shipwrecks found along its shoreline, is a remote and desolate region that offers a unique coastal experience. Visitors can explore shipwrecks, view diverse marine life, and witness the haunting beauty of the area.
Damaraland is home to unique geological formations, ancient rock art, and rare desert-adapted wildlife, such as elephants and black rhinos. Key attractions include the Twyfelfontein rock engravings, the Petrified Forest, and the Vingerklip rock formation.
The lush Caprivi Strip offers a stark contrast to Namibia’s arid landscapes. This narrow strip of land is home to several national parks and reserves, abundant wildlife, and a network of rivers, making it an ideal destination for boat safaris and bird watching.
These incredible destinations and attractions make Namibia an ideal choice for digital nomads looking to balance work with adventure and exploration.
8. Activities and Experiences for Digital Nomads in Namibia
Namibia offers digital nomads a wide range of activities and experiences to make their time in the country even more enriching and enjoyable. Here are some popular options to consider during your stay:
Namibia is an adventure lover’s paradise, offering numerous thrilling activities for those seeking an adrenaline rush. Some popular adventure sports in the country include:
- Sandboarding: Glide down the towering sand dunes of the Namib Desert for an exhilarating experience.
- Skydiving: Take the plunge and experience the thrill of freefalling over the stunning landscapes of Namibia, particularly in the coastal town of Swakopmund.
- Quad biking: Explore the breathtaking Namib Desert on a quad bike, navigating through the dunes and taking in the unique desert landscapes.
Cultural experiences and interactions with local communities
Namibia is home to diverse cultures and traditions, making it an excellent destination for those interested in experiencing and learning about local customs. Here are some ways to immerse yourself in Namibian culture:
- Visit traditional villages: Spend time in traditional villages, such as the Himba or San communities, to learn about their customs, beliefs, and way of life.
- Cultural tours: Participate in guided cultural tours that offer insights into Namibia’s history, architecture, and art.
- Attend local festivals and events: Join in on local celebrations, such as the Windhoek Oktoberfest or the Swakopmund Christmas Market, to experience the country’s unique blend of African and European influences.
Volunteering opportunities and eco-tourism projects
For digital nomads seeking to give back to the local community or contribute to conservation efforts, there are numerous volunteering opportunities and eco-tourism projects in Namibia. Some options include:
- Wildlife conservation: Get involved in wildlife conservation projects, such as tracking and monitoring desert-adapted elephants or working with cheetah and leopard rehabilitation centers.
- Community development: Participate in community development initiatives, such as teaching English, assisting with healthcare projects, or supporting sustainable agriculture efforts.
- Eco-tourism: Engage in eco-tourism projects that promote responsible travel and contribute to the conservation of Namibia’s natural and cultural heritage.
By participating in these activities and experiences, digital nomads can enrich their time in Namibia, create lasting memories, and form meaningful connections with the local communities and environment.
9. Practical Tips for Digital Nomads in Namibia
To make the most of your time in Namibia as a digital nomad, it’s essential to familiarize yourself with local customs, etiquette, and practical considerations. Here are some useful tips to help you navigate your stay in Namibia:
Local customs and etiquette
- Namibians value politeness and respect, so always greet people with a smile and a handshake.
- It’s customary to address people by their title and last name unless invited to use their first name.
- Punctuality is important, especially in professional settings. Try to be on time for appointments and meetings.
- When visiting traditional communities, always ask for permission before taking photographs and respect local customs.
Money and banking tips
- The local currency is the Namibian Dollar (NAD), which is linked to the South African Rand (ZAR) at a 1:1 exchange rate.
- Major credit cards are widely accepted in larger towns and tourist areas, but it’s a good idea to carry cash for use in more remote locations.
- ATMs are readily available in larger cities and towns. However, their availability decreases as you venture into rural areas, so plan accordingly.
- Inform your bank of your travel plans to avoid having your cards blocked due to suspicious activity.
Shopping and bargaining
- Bargaining is common in local markets and informal shops. Start by offering about 50% of the asking price and negotiate from there.
- Be respectful during the bargaining process and remember that haggling is an essential part of the local culture.
- When shopping for souvenirs, consider purchasing items that are made in Namibia to support local artisans and the economy.
Language and communication
- English is the official language of Namibia and is widely spoken, especially in urban areas and tourist destinations. However, learning a few basic phrases in local languages such as Afrikaans, Oshiwambo, or Herero can be helpful and appreciated by the locals.
- Namibians are generally friendly and approachable, so don’t hesitate to ask for assistance if needed.
Visa extensions and renewals
- If you need to extend your stay in Namibia beyond the six months allowed by the digital nomad visa, you will need to apply for a visa extension at the nearest immigration office.
- Keep in mind that visa extensions are not guaranteed, and it’s essential to plan your stay accordingly and be prepared to leave the country when your visa expires.
By following these practical tips, you can ensure a smooth and enjoyable experience as a digital nomad in Namibia, allowing you to fully immerse yourself in the country’s rich culture, stunning landscapes, and vibrant communities.
10. Conclusion and Final Thoughts on the Namibia Digital Nomad Visa
Namibia has come a long way since first gaining independence. The NIPDB is working fast to promote business and development in the country.
The Namibia Digital Nomad Visa is really a very unique opportunity for remote workers to live in this interesting country and explore the natural beauty of the landscape and wildlife.
While Namibia doesn’t have all the amenities and isn’t a ‘hot spot’ for digital nomads yet, it is a great place for adventure. WildWifi is building out the community, infrastructure and amenities needed for remote workers to live, work and explore in Namibia. We see Namibia as the ultimate destination to really connect with yourself and others in a like-minded community, do your life’s best work in a productive environment and gain unbelievable experiences in the wild.
If you are interested in joining a coliving for digital nomads in Namibia, now or in the future, we encourage you to register for our priority list to hear first when dates are announced. Register here today.