Work from Wherever Index

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Why work from home when you can work from another country and explore in your free time? The travel booking website KAYAK has checked out which countries are best for remote work and travel adventures.

One big revelation from the pandemic the last couple of years is that working from home can be very productive. But at the same time, staring at the same view and only having the dog to bounce ideas off can be extremely… uninspiring.

The travel booking website KAYAK set out to map the best alternatives to working from home. Their Work from Wherever Index or “Workation Index” is the ultimate source for those looking to set up a new office away from home temporarily or for a longer period of time.

To develop the index, KAYAK closely analysed 111 countries and ranked each against 22 factors across six categories: travel costs and accessibility; local prices; health & safety; remote working capabilities; social life; and weather. Ultimately, the index reveals the countries that are easiest to work from while having a lot of fun in your off hours.

Worldwide Ranking

Rank Country / Region
1. Portugal
2. Spain
3. Romania
4. Mauritius
5. Japan
6. Malta
7. Costa Rica
8. Panama
9. Czech Republic
10. Germany

Portugal was ranked the all-round best country to work remotely from worldwide. Some of the primary reasons why it came in Nr. 1 is because Portugal offers a Digital Nomad Visa, many locals have a high English proficiency, it’s very politically stable with an absence of violence, and it has great weather with low air pollution, high abundance of places for going out, low-crime rates, and relatively low cost of living.

Asia-Pacific Ranking

Rank Country / Region
1. Japan
2. Sri Lanka
3. Taiwan
4. Thailand
5. Indonesia
6. Australia
7. Malaysia
8. Singapore
9. The Philippines
10. New Zealand

In a worldwide perspective, Asia-Pacific did not perform very well in the index. But within Asia-Pacific, there are some surprises.

Sri Lanka took an impressive 2nd spot in the Asia-Pacific region and came 13th worldwide, outrunning countries like Thailand, Indonesia or Singapore. Sri Lanka has very attractive local prices and affordable long-term apartment rentals which creates great opportunities for travel. Digital nomads will definitely appreciate the good weather conditions all year round. Another significant factor that speaks in favour of choosing this country for workation is the visa for digital nomads that has recently been introduced.

It was not a surprise that Taiwan ranked third-best as a remote working destination regionally. It offers a three-year remote work visa and has a fair amount of places for going out and experiencing culture. It ranks fourth in the region in the Health and safety category for its high political stability and absence of violence, and is an LGBT friendly country.

In Asia-Pacific, Thailand came in on a fourth place followed by Indonesia and Malaysia. Singapore came in on eights place.

New time-zone tool

In addition to the Work from Wherever Index, KAYAK features a new time zone ranking to help users quickly and easily find out the time differences for their trip – ideal for those looking to swerve 2am conference calls whilst working abroad. The time zone-focused rankings take key factors and categories from the Work from Wherever Index into account but displays them according to your work country of origin – so the countries that have time zones closest to your own work time zone will be featured higher up on the list of country destinations. The tool also provides information on the latest travel restrictions and local vaccination rates per country.

Before planning your journey, be sure to check the latest travel restrictions in your destination. KAYAK’s travel restrictions map provides real time updates on COVID-19 restrictions and entry requirements of individual countries around the world.


Data in six categories has been collected in order to rank countries in terms of their attractiveness for remote work: Travel, Local prices, Health & safety, Remote work, Social life and Weather.

Within these categories, a total of 22 factors have been defined to reach a comprehensive overview of aspects that travellers may encounter and care about when deciding on the destination for remote work.

All sources have been accessed and data retrieved between 1 September – 20 October 2021. The numbers collected are based on the latest available data.


KAYAK, part of Booking Holdings (NASDAQ: BKNG), is the world’s leading travel search engine. With billions of queries across our platforms, we help people find their perfect flight, stay and rental car. We also support business travellers with KAYAK for Business, our free corporate travel solution, and are transforming the in-travel experience with our app and new hotel and accommodation software. For more information, visit

About Gregers Møller

Editor-in-Chief • ScandAsia Publishing Co., Ltd. • Bangkok, Thailand

View all posts by Gregers Møller

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