When Lamin Ngobeh, a high school teacher at the Freire Charter School in Wilmington, Delaware, saw a social media post last month about working remotely in Barbados for 12 months, his interest was piqued.
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“My school probably won’t open for in-person classes at least until February 2021, and I want to be in a country that’s safer – health wise – and also enjoy the quality of life,” he said of the reasons for considering a temporary relocation. “I reached out to my school leaders and they were very supportive of my decision.”
When it announced its 12-month Welcome Stamp program in mid-July, Barbados became one of the first of several countries, in regions from the Caribbean to Eastern Europe, to create programs for remote workers.
The programs employ either special visas or expand existing ones to entice workers to temporarily relocate. Other countries offering similar visas currently include Estonia, Georgia and Bermuda.
A substantial drop in these countries’ tourism numbers is a key reason for the new programs.
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