Today, millions of people work remotely outside the office. However, this new reality doesn’t always mean that they are limited to working from home. Droves of remote workers have gone so far as to trade in their workday commutes to and from the office for a plane ticket to distant and exotic locations around the world.
The number of people following a digital nomad lifestyle has more than doubled in the last two years from 4.8 million in 2018 to 10.9 million in 2020.
Now that the office has been replaced with a laptop, digital nomads have become more dependent on apps and programs, plus a good Wi-Fi connection to enable them to do their jobs and earn a living. One important component necessary for any successful business or entrepreneur working outside the confines of an office is access to a reliable bookkeeping or accounting app in order to manage your money as a digital nomad.
Whether you are already running your business out of a café in Honolulu or are looking into potential destinations to begin your adventure, rest assured that when it comes to downloading the best apps for digital nomads, all you have to do is keep reading. We’ve done the homework for you. All that’s left is for you to decide which best bookkeeping app suits your needs.
Top Bookkeeping Apps for Digital Nomads
There are a number of accounting and financing apps in the market, but most of those come at a cost or even a monthly fee that is tiered depending on the needs of your business and the amount of money you are willing to spend. For the purposes of this article, the list below highlights the top five free digital apps available to help manage your accounting and bookkeeping needs, including the pros and cons.
This app offers an all-in-one tool that will help meet most, if not all, of your financial needs as you stare out at the clear blue waters from the balcony of your Caribbean office or sit beneath the swaying palm trees in Bali.
Pros: Allows you to create schedules, manage your team, conduct payroll tasks, as well as automate your tax fillings. In addition, you can create and track invoices in real time, monitor payments and send reminders to clients. This app also provides easy access to money coming in through Square Card.
Cons: Add-on services can be expensive depending on the needs of your growing company, and although expert support is offered, there have been a number of complaints regarding customer service.
This is used primarily as an invoicing and task management app that is utilized by freelancers, contractors and remote workers who have set up their digital offices in another country.
Pros: The app can create professional-looking invoices and can also be used to message clients. It also stores all your important documents, including contracts, in one place. Much like all the recommended apps in this article, the main pro here is that it is free for contractors but has upgrade options available for a growing business.
Cons: In order to take full advantage of all of the app's features, your customers and clients will also need to download this app.
Formerly known as TransferWise, this support tool is used in more than 170 countries by over 10 million people and businesses. The app allows users to save money when it comes to making and receiving payments and transfers and avoids the unfavorable, and costly, exchange rates charged by banks.
Pros: In addition to the savings noted above, digital workers can use the app to bill clients in local currencies, including U.S., Singapore and Canadian dollars, as well as Euro, British Pound and 50 other currencies.
Cons: Although a lot of countries use this service, it’s not used everywhere. Countries that do not accommodate Wise transfers include Brazil, Vietnam, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Ukraine and China.
Favored by freelancers, this app helps improve productivity and enables digital nomads to stay organized with the help of time-tracking and project boards. There are a ton of features under what’s called the “Forever Free” plan, including invoice and quotation templates, expense tracking and payment processing. Upgrades include additional features that can cost between $10-$14 a month.
Pros: It automates billing and recurring invoicing, projects are managed through Kanban Boards, there's free support for up to 50 clients with unlimited invoices and quotes and more.
Cons: This app is best suited for a solopreneur and not ideal for a larger business.
Digital Nomad Finances
Sometimes you need a little help when it comes to your bookkeeping and accounting. Incfile can help you stay on top of all your finances and taxes, allowing you to focus on your job and your adventures abroad. Check out our Accounting and Bookkeeping service to see if you can benefit from our professional accountants.
Peter Mavrikis is an author and editor with over 25 years of experience in publishing. He has worked as the Editorial Director for Barron’s Educational Series, as well as Kaplan Test Prep, where he ran the test prep, foreign language, and study guide divisions. Peter has also written several books on history, exploration, science, and technology.