Top Cities for Mobile Entrepreneurs and Digital Nomads

Remote working has become a permanent part of todays workforce, but it also greatly enhances the life of entrepreneurs who own online businesses. Many don’t even have a physical location for their small business, preferring to hire virtual assistants and freelancers while working ‘in the cloud’.

This Preply study focuses on workations (the travel trend of mixing work & play) for remote workers, but it applies to anyone who can work from anywhere (from CEOs to digital nomads).

If you’d rather not leave Canada, four Canadian cities are also in the top 50:

Ottawa (#9 out of 74 cities)

  • Total score: 75/100
  • Climate & environment: 49
  • Costs & safety: 80
  • Quality of life: 92

Montreal (#27 out of 74 cities)

  • Total score: 58/100
  • Climate & environment: 26
  • Costs & safety: 89
  • Quality of life: 76

Vancouver (#36 out of 74 cities)

  • Total score: 51/100
  • Climate & environment: 40
  • Costs & safety: 54
  • Quality of life: 87

Toronto (#47 out of 74 cities)

  • Total score: 40/100
  • Climate & environment: 55
  • Costs & safety: 71
  • Quality of life: 37

Read on for more cities to consider visiting or living in while you build your online business (and which to avoid).

Press release: In a recent report, the online learning provider Preply ranked the 74 best cities for a workation worldwide. There were four Canadian cities in the top 50: Ottawa ranked (number 9 out of 74 cities around the globe, Montreal (27), Vancouver (36), and Toronto (47).

Workcations combine work and vacation – booking a mountain cabin for a week while working a full-time job remotely, for example. They became popular early in the pandemic, as many digital workers fled cramped apartments during lockdowns. Workcations are an evolution of ‘bleisure’: travel combining business and leisure trips.

Preply’s study considers three areas of research: 1. quality of life, 2. climate and environment, and 3. costs and safety. Each city has been given a total score, with the best score representing the city’s quality for professionals to work remotely.

Here are the 25 best cities for a workation in 2023, according to Preply:

1. Brisbane, Australia
2. Lisbon, Portugal
3. Nicosia, Cyprus
4. Taipei, Taiwan
5. Ljubljana, Slovenia
6. Helsinki, Finland
7. Vienna, Austria
8. Auckland, New Zealand
9. Ottawa, Canada
10. Reykjavik, Iceland
11. Tallinn, Estonia
12. Madrid, Spain
13. Tel Aviv, Israel
14. Copenhagen, Denmark
15. Prague Czech Republic
16. Vilnius, Lithuania
17. Sydney, Australia
18. Lucembourg, Luxembourg
19. Barcelona, Spain
20. Oslo, Norway
21. Bratislava, Slovakia
22. Melbourne, Australia
23. Belfast, United Kingdom
24. Athens, Greece
25. Munich, Germany

Ottawa, no. 9 out of the 74 cities in the study for a workation

Ottawa was ranked 9th, with the highest category being “quality of life,” with a score of 92, and “costs and safety” at 80.

Known for its Parliament Hill, rich history, diverse cultures, and summer music festivals, Ottawa gives remote workers plenty of fun things to do in their free time.

Here rent for a one-bedroom apartment will cost you $1271 CAD. Safety levels are generally high (score of 81), and pollution levels are very low (89).

The best city for a workation overall is Brisbane in Australia

The best ‘workation’ city overall is Brisbane, with a total score of 100. Brisbane is a city that lives up to its sunny potential with a strong focus on the outdoors – think al fresco dining, picnics by the river, islands just off the coast, and national parks.

Add to this a dynamic cultural precinct, abundant wildlife, and easy access to nearby icons like the Gold Coast and Great Barrier Reef, and you’ve got a remote working destination you can’t say no to.

Here rent for a one-bedroom apartment will cost you 1,714 AU, and you can enjoy 229 sunny days per year. For those looking for a comfortable temperature, you can enjoy an average of 22°C.

The worst city for a workation overall is Jarkarta in Indonesia

Jakarta was the last out of the 74 cities in the study. Jakarta scored low in all three categories of climate/ environment, costs and safety, and quality of life. Although the housing prices are affordable, Jakarta scored high for pollution and low for safety as well as human rights.

Amy Pritchett, Culture Success Manager at Preply, says:

“‘We’ve been taught to keep work and play apart. Yet more of us are still taking workcations, years into the pandemic – and reaping the benefits. The trend could be here to stay. Employees greatly appreciate their freedom and better quality of life, and it’s a great way to discover a new culture, learn a new language and travel the world.

Adventurous workers have decided to become digital nomads or settle in exotic, exciting cities far from home. Equipped with a laptop, smartphone, and all the technology and software needed to connect with bosses and colleagues seamlessly, you can work from anywhere in the world.”

View the Workation Index Report

About Preply

Preply is an online language learning marketplace connecting more than 32,000 tutors teaching 50 languages to hundreds of thousands of learners in 180 countries worldwide. With student-tutor matches suggested through a machine-learning algorithm, recommended tutors create customized lesson plans to suit the learner’s budget, schedule, and current knowledge.

Preply was founded in 2012 by the Ukrainian team of Kirill Bigai, Serge Lukyanov, and Dmytro Voloshyn. Today, the company has over 400 employees of 58 different nationalities. Preply is a US company with employees in 30 countries across Europe, the USA, Africa, Asia, and Latin America.

Related Reading:

The 7 Best Online Businesses for Canadian Digital Nomads

10 Low-Cost, Part-Time Businesses you can Start Online from Home

Small Businesses in Rural Canada – Current Stat’s and Digital Potential

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