Select Page

This post may contain affiliate links or sponsored content. For more info please read my Disclaimer.

Coworking Spaces: Not the Best Choice for Everyone

by | Last updated Jul 16, 2022

You can find coworking spaces in almost every big city today. As an (aspiring) digital nomad there seems to be no way around them. Indeed, there are a lot of advantages. But are they really the ultimate way of working for everyone? Before you sign up for a membership, there are some points you should take into consideration. Let’s have a look at the pros and cons of coworking spaces and see what potential alternatives could be.

Coworking Spaces, Digital Nomad, Remote Worker, Freelancer, Entrepreneur, Work from Home, Shared Office

Background Information

Before we jump right into it, we should have a look at some facts to get an idea of the importance of shared offices.

According to the 2017 Global Coworking Survey there are now about 13,800 coworking spaces worldwide. That is a very impressive number. Especially, when you look at the fact that 5 years ago, there were only 940 around.

However, it’s not only digital nomads using them. In fact, only 14% of coworking space members are digital nomads. The rest are people like expats, remote workers, entrepreneurs, or work-from-home professionals.

Some of the most famous coworking spaces are places like Dojo and in Bali, Punspace in Chiang Mai, Betahaus in Berlin, SurfOffice in Lisbon, or The Box Jelly in Honolulu.


Advantages of Coworking Spaces

Since there are so many shared working spaces around and they are constantly growing and expanding, there must be some great benefits, right? Right! There are indeed quite a few important advantages:


Obviously, you need to have a well-functioning internet connection as a digital nomad. In some regions, it’s a massive pain to get that. Coworking spaces usually have the best high-speed internet quality in town, which makes your daily work life so much easier.

Learn tricks and hacks how to improve your internet connection when traveling.

Professional Equipment

You get a proper desk, often ergonomically designed chairs (prevent back pain!), power sockets, and a printer and scanner. Many shared offices also offer their members equipment for rent, such as additional screens, microphones, or keyboards.

Private Rooms

Often coworking spaces have a few meeting rooms you can use in case your team members work in the same place. Sometimes they even have soundproof phone booths, if you need a quiet space for an important call or want to yell at someone on the phone.

Additional Goodies

For your convenience, some shared offices offer things like a kitchen, air-condition, lockers, a common chill-out area, or a gym. WeWork in Berlin offers their members free beer all day (Germans…).


Typically, a coworking space doesn’t have the sterile and uninspiring atmosphere a normal office has. The spaces may have a loft character, are full of artwork, plants or relaxing couches, to make you feel comfortable and enhance your creativity.


If you just want to hang out for a day or two, you usually don’t require a membership in a coworking space. However, it gets cheaper when you sign up. The good thing is that these memberships are usually very flexible in terms of the period of cancellation and things like that.

But it’s not only a great working environment. Shared offices are also a great place to enlarge your social circle:


Many coworking spaces offer regular events, such as free breakfasts, barbeques or evening get-togethers. These events can also be of professional nature, like workshops or presentations.

Meeting People

Shared offices are a great place to meet many like-minded people. You might share the same experiences or struggles and thus, can exchange and help each other.

Plus, you never know what happens. Maybe you find a future client in that office or a new team member for your business.

Community Feeling

If you are a digital nomad, remote worker, work-from-home professional or anything like that and you spend all day in front of your laptop alone, it can get boring and you might feel lonely from time to time.

Although you are not exactly working with the people in a shared office, you can at least socialize a little bit and be part of a community.

Coworking Spaces, Digital Nomad, Remote Worker, Freelancer, Entrepreneur, Work from Home, Shared Office

Disadvantages of Coworking Spaces

All of that sounds great so far, doesn’t it? But, as with everything, there are downsides to shared offices, too. They are so meaningful, that some digital nomads avoid them completely.


Unless you are in the very lucky position to live right next to your coworking space, you will have to get there somehow. That usually means public transport, traffic jam, or walking in the rain or heat.

Of course, this takes precious time and, depending on the city you are in right now, quite a bit of money.

Getting Ready

You will have to get ready in the morning just like you would if you went to a normal office job. That means, for example, put on proper clothes (coworking spaces are usually very relaxed, but coming there in your pajamas might be a bit too casual).

You also have to pack all the things you need during the day. It is super annoying if you forget to bring your headphones but have an important meeting scheduled. So you have to go back home and get them (= time & money).


You have started the digital nomad life because you wanted to escape your daily routines. And suddenly you find yourself doing exactly what you did before, just on the other side of the globe:

Set an alarm early in the morning, get dressed, pack your stuff, commute to the office, put on a smile and greet everyone nicely, start to work, a bit of small talk here and there, lunch break with your coworkers, more work, shut down your laptop, leave the office, closing time.

Don’t get me wrong, routines are nothing bad per se. Some are great and can improve your daily productivity. But it’s easy to get sucked up and be at the same point where you were before.

Office Environment

Ok, let’s face it. Most of us are probably sick of working in an office or even cubicle. A closed room, neo light, sitting at a desk all day, other people… There’s got to be more than that. That’s why we went for an unconventional life. And now we should return to an office?

Maybe it’s in another country and it looks all funky and creative and you don’t have your boss sitting in the room next to you. But it’s still an office. Shared space or not.


Yes, meeting new people is great and networking is important to your business. But often you find yourself chatting with other digital nomads in your shared office about non-business-related stuff.

Socializing is awesome, I’m totally with you. But if you spend hours and hours every day with it, you won’t get much work done.


Maybe you manage not to talk to other coworkers all day. But how about them chatting right next to you? How about the guy on the phone behind you? Or the people walking up and down the noisy hallway?

Being in a shared office also means that there are distractions everywhere and you might find it hard to focus on your work.


Many coworking spaces are fairly cheap. But it is still money. Especially, when you are at the beginning of our location-independent lifestyle you might be on a tight budget. You probably have free wifi the place you are staying anyway or you can simply go to a nice café. Paying for an office space is money you could technically save.

Coworking Spaces, Digital Nomad, Remote Worker, Freelancer, Entrepreneur, Work from Home, Shared Office

Alternatives to Coworking Spaces

Now you’re confused and wonder what to do and where you should work from. Luckily, coworking spaces are not mandatory. If you have a good internet connection, you can easily work from your hotel, AirBnB or wherever you are staying.

Pssst: Want to receive 25 USD off your first stay with Airbnb? Use the link to register and get a discount!

Alternatively, you can also go to bars or cafés. They often have a great wifi connection for free, food and drinks available all day and you get to meet many different people, other digital nomads or locals alike.

To find the best places all over the world, use websites such as Work Hard Anywhere or

If you like the concept of coworking, you might enjoy special programs for remote workers and digital nomads, too. You usually travel in groups around the world, experience the country and culture and work at the same time.


My Personal Experience

I’m convinced that coworking spaces are a great way of working for many digital nomads and some of them need this type of environment to be productive and happy.

However, I’m not one of them. I’ve tried it a couple of times but mostly failed. That doesn’t surprise me too much, since I left my old 9-5 job mainly because I hated being locked away in an office all day, commuting there, and having too much of my day packed in routines.

I realized that I’m most productive when I’m alone and I can focus on my work entirely. I get easily distracted, that’s why I rarely work from cafés either. If I have to I usually use certain apps for digital nomads that help me to stay focused.

Nevertheless, I still go to coworking spaces every once in a while, but mainly to socialize. Most of them offer great events, which are free to non-members or visitors, too. Especially, when you are new to a place it’s a perfect way of meeting people and making friends.

Coworking Spaces, Digital Nomad, Remote Worker, Freelancer, Entrepreneur, Work from Home, Shared Office

Are Shared Offices The Right Thing For You?

Well, there is only one way to find out for sure: You’ve got to give it a try! Make sure you go and have a look at different places because they vary much in the atmosphere, members, vibe, etc. Great places to find office spaces are, for example, Coworker or Sharedesk.

In case you find out, that you are not feeling entirely comfortable working in a shared environment, don’t feel obliged to use them only because you want to be a digital nomad and that’s what digital nomads do according to the hype. Everyone is different and you need to find out and go for whatever works best for you and your career.

Everyone is different and you need to find out and go for whatever works best for you and your career.

What’s your personal experience with coworking spaces? Do you like them or rather work from home?

Coworking Spaces seem to be everywhere today. Despite their great advantages, there are significant downsides, too. Learn about them before signing up.


Denise Mai

Denise Mai

Founder of Digital Nomad Soul

Hi everyone, thanks for stopping by! My name is Denise and I have been working online for more than 10 years. In the past, I worked as a remote employee and freelancer & managed to build a six-figure online business. I know that many others would love to work from home or work while traveling, too. That’s why I want to share my experience and help you on your way to your remote career!

You May Also Like

Modern Sabbaticals – 17+ Ways How to Take a Remote Year

Modern Sabbaticals – 17+ Ways How to Take a Remote Year

Later could mean you are less physically able. Later could mean you don’t have money anymore or need to take care of loved ones. Later could mean never. More and more people have realized that waiting for retirement to do all the fun things they’ve always wanted to do...

18 Work-from-Home Cybersecurity Tips to Protect Your Data

18 Work-from-Home Cybersecurity Tips to Protect Your Data

I know, I know. Data security is not exactly the most exciting topic. However, when you work from home or work remotely in general, is it your duty to make sure your data is safe. So to make it as easy as possible for you, I’ve collected a list of 18 of the most...

16 Fun Jobs that Pay You to Travel the World

16 Fun Jobs that Pay You to Travel the World

Many people dream about traveling the world but it’s the money that holds them back. Traveling to faraway countries doesn’t come for free and many of us simply don’t have the budget to travel for weeks, months, or even years in a row.  Wouldn’t it be great if you...

12 Digital Nomad Dating Apps – How to Date as a Digital Nomad?

12 Digital Nomad Dating Apps – How to Date as a Digital Nomad?

Dating as a digital nomad is hard. You are constantly on the move, travel a lot, and oftentimes don’t work the usual 9 to 5. Although, the digital nomad lifestyle is becoming more and more popular, finding love is still tricky. Luckily, there are quite a few digital...

13 Best Travel Credit Cards for Digital Nomads in 2024

13 Best Travel Credit Cards for Digital Nomads in 2024

  Did you know that you can’t just save money by using certain credit cards while traveling but actually MAKE money by using the right ones? That’s right! You can get money for free with travel credit cards via cashback, rewards, or sign-up bonuses. That’s why...

9 Surprises Of The Digital Nomad Experience To Expect

9 Surprises Of The Digital Nomad Experience To Expect

  Despite all of the exhaustive research, preparing, and planning you’ve done to finally launch into your digital nomad experience, as soon as you embark, some huge surprises will still crash into you like waves.  If you’re not prepared for them, they could...


  1. Interesting overlook!

  2. Thanks a lot! Glad you find it helpful :)

  3. Thanks for providing awesome information.The information provided is very helpful.

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Zero to Remote Work Success

Online Course Bundle - small

Get the most comprehensive online course on Remote Work now!

8 New Remote Jobs for Introverts – Trending Work from Home Jobs

In this blog post, I want to show you 8 new remote jobs for introverts that are currently high in demand and relatively new on the market. These jobs can be done from anywhere in the world and they don’t require you to make calls or participate in meetings. Here you...

14 Digital Products to Sell on Etsy as a Beginner in 2024

In this blog post, I want to show you 14 of the most popular digital products to sell on Etsy. You don’t need any experience to create these products and there are many free online tools out there you can use to design them. At the end of the post, I also show you a...

8 Best Online Chat Support Jobs from Home for Beginners

Online Chat Support Jobs are brilliant job options for remote workers and digital nomads. All you need is a reliable internet connection and a laptop. Most of the time, you don’t need a degree or previous experience. You also don’t need to do any phone calls which...

Insured Nomads Review 2024: A Legit Insurance for Digital Nomads?

Insured Nomads is a relatively new insurance company for travelers and remote workers. In this Insured Nomads review, we want to look at what exactly is covered by the policy and what isn’t covered. We are also going to learn how much Insured Nomads costs and if it’s...

FlexJobs Logo

Find Remote Jobs from Home –
Part-Time & Full-Time!

Flexible, Beginner-Friendly & Scam-Free