Downsides to a Nomadic Lifestyle

There are times when I think that a nomadic lifestyle would be great. I know a lot of people who enjoy nomadic or semi-nomadic lifestyles. Sometimes I think that, because I love travel, a nomadic lifestyle might be just the thing for me.

However, the more I think about it, the more I realize that, in a lot of ways, I might not be suited to a nomadic lifestyle — especially as a parent. Here are some of the downsides I see to being a nomad (at least at my current situation in life):

No Place to Call Home

One of the things I realized is that I like to have a “home base.” While I enjoy traveling, I also like the feeling of “coming home” to something familiar. A stable place that I can count on. Once you become a nomad, you might have to give that up. Sure, I could make my parents’ home my “base” but that doesn’t appeal to me either. Because it’s not really “mine.”

While I’m not a huge “things” person, I nevertheless have a few items that I am quite attached to, and that I like to have around me. However, I can’t haul these things around. Some of them are too valuable or too delicate to be traveling around the world. Others are too bulky. Having a “home” to keep them in is important to me right now, even though I am whittling down my possessions.

Education for My Son

I have a 10-year-old. If I’m traveling the world, what will my son do for his education? I know that there are nomadic families that don’t have this issue. They tutor their kids while they travel, and their kids get a “real world” education on culture, life, customs, and more just by being exposed to new experiences.

However, I’m not that patient of a person. There’s a reason I don’t homeschool, and it has to do with the fact that, even though I love my son, I don’t have the temperment for teaching. I’m a good swimmer, but he takes his lessons from someone else. I could teach him the piano, but past attempts have been disastrous.

My son would get nothing like regular instruction if I were in charge of his education in a foreign country. When you have kids, making sure they learn what they need to is a big disadvantage of being a nomad.

Other Downsides

There are other things to take into consideration when it comes to living a nomadic lifestyle. Some of these include:

  • Loneliness and isolation
  • Difficulty in learning your way around a new place
  • Trouble communicating if you don’t know the language
  • Hard to make money if you don’t have access to reliable Internet and other work requirements
  • It can be expensive when it’s time to move on, especially if you plan to fly

I can see myself considering a nomadic lifestyle later on. Or, perhaps, I would be better suited to a semi-nomadic lifestyle or long-term vacation arrangements. I picture living in one place for two or three months before heading back “home,” or taking a month-long backpacking trip through a specific area.

What do you think? Is a nomadic lifestyle your thing?

Image: Nomads Hostels

About the Author

Miranda writes about financial topics for several web sites. Her blog is Planting Money Seeds, and her book, Confessions of a Professional Blogger, is available on Amazon.