Workcations Are Changing the Way We Work — Here’s How to Take One

The rise of remote work has opened entirely new ways of carrying out our 9-to-5s. Enter: the workcation (also spelled workation), a working holiday that mixes business and play. As international travel picks up, workcations are trending, and while being tethered to your laptop on vacation was once considered a tragic lack of boundaries, it’s becoming a coveted getaway.

Workcations allow for a blissful change of scenery for work from home employees who long to escape their everyday routine and see the world — without burning up all their vacation days. If you’re dreaming of a glorious work trip, you’re not alone. A new survey from travel search engine KAYAK found that 27 percent of employed Canadians plan to take a workcation in 2022.

So, how do you pull it off?

Choose your destination wisely

The best workcation destinations offer a mix of great weather, new experiences, beautiful views, and — most importantly — reliable internet. Whether you’re looking for architecture and history in Europe or sun and relaxation in the Bahamas, internet, phone service and access to a quiet workspace are key factors. “Internet is not created equally around the world,” says Kate Smith, an expert globetrotter and career coach at The Remote Nomad. “Most beach destinations only have good Wi-Fi close to the city centre, which end up being far from the beach.” Smith recommends choosing accommodations that are close to a coworking space. She also suggests reading reviews for your Airbnb, hotel, or hostel, and asking them to run a speedtest from their network if you plan to work from where you’re staying.

Major time zone changes could also be tricky to navigate with your workplace, so you may want to consider locations with the same time zone or with only a few hours’ difference.

Have a plan to minimize work disruptions

When it’s time to notify your boss or clients, come with a thoughtful plan that helps them feel comfortable. “Give advanced notice, set clear expectations, and clearly communicate if your travels will affect your day-to-day work, along with your plan for managing those changes,” saysSmith. “The less disruption the better.” Part of that plan might include setting up a daily touch base, working off-hours if there is a time difference, and investing in equipment for optimal productivity, like a reliable laptop(and laptop bag), a backup power bank, noise cancelling headphonesand luggage. Just be sure they know how best to reach you.

Apps like Wi-Fi Map, Wi-Fi Finder, and WorkFrom can help you find solid internet connection and a quiet desk close by. Smithalso recommends creating a Google map before your trip and pinning essentials like cafes, grocery stores, workspaces, and even tech stores to find a local SIM card, so you aren’t left scrambling on arrival.

Maximize productivity and find a work-life balance

Carving out time to experience the destination is just as important as meeting your work commitments. And both are possible with smart planning and a good routine.

Set reasonable expectations by accounting for buffer time in everything you do, whether that’s navigating a new locale, sight-seeing, or work tasks. There will be a lot to juggle, so find a schedule that works for you and try breaking your day into manageable chunks. Then, clearly define your work hours so you can shut your laptop and start exploring when the workday ends.

Incorporate sightseeing into your routine by taking different routes to your workspace, going for scenic walk breaks, or working at different cafés around the city. Smithalso advises only travelling on the weekend so workdays go smoothly and you can scout good workstations on your days off: “That way, come Monday, you’re organized and ready to hit the ground running without interrupting your workflow.”

You’ll be mixing work and pleasure around the world in no time.

Read more:

How Working from Anywhere Can Benefit Mental Health

Take It On The Road: 5 Work From Anywhere Essentials You Need

4 Ways to Incorporate Wellness on the Job

By Staples Canada

April 08, 2022