AN­OTHER DAY AT THE OF­FICE

Sunday Herald Sun - Escape - - HOW I TRAVEL - CE­LESTE MITCHELL

It was when I found my­self stand­ing on one foot, on a rooftop in Mex­ico, hold­ing my phone to the sky in vain hope for a stronger sig­nal, whis­per­ing into the head­phone mic on a call with a CEO – with a yoga class go­ing on be­hind me – that I re­alised the whole dig­i­tal nomad thing might not be the lap­top-In­sta-pic-in-ex­oti­clo­ca­tions dream it’s cracked up to be.

Dig­i­tal nomad or not, more peo­ple are be­ing called to keep up work ap­pear­ances while on “hol­i­days” or are cash­ing in on flex­i­ble work deals to take an ex­tended break while meet­ing min­i­mum of­fice hours. There’s even a buzz­word for it: bleisure.

It’s a bit­ter­sweet by-prod­uct of our “al­ways on” men­tal­ity but there’s still a cer­tain ex­oti­cism to work­ing re­motely, es­pe­cially if you can do it over­seas and ac­tu­ally get paid while see­ing the world. Airbnb and Tank Stream Labs, in their Evo­lu­tion of Work re­port, re­cently found 81 per cent of Aus­tralians would like to work re­motely, while 40 per cent are al­ready do­ing it at least once a week.

Ac­cord­ing to the re­search, twothirds of em­ploy­ees be­lieve flex­i­ble work and the abil­ity to work from home, a cafe, shared or co-work­ing space when they want, or need to, make an em­ployer more ap­peal­ing.

As a free­lance travel writer, it’s part of my re­mit to work on trains, planes, cars, buses and ho­tel lob­bies, in kitchens, cowork­ing spa­ces and cof­fee shops. So be­fore you set your out-ofof­fice and start your Macbook en­gines, here’s some handy hacks to help you work on the road.

CHOOSE DES­TI­NA­TIONS WITH RE­LI­ABLE WI-FI

There’s a rea­son free­lancers flock to places like Canggu and Chi­ang Mai. Nomad List ranks des­ti­na­tions based on their con­nec­tiv­ity, af­ford­abil­ity and fun fac­tor if you’re look­ing for some­where to set­tle for a while.

TRAVEL SLOWER

You can’t work and travel full time and keep your san­ity. Aim to stay three times longer in any des­ti­na­tion than what you would book if you were just sight­see­ing.

BOOK WORK-FRIENDLY STAYS

Em­ploy­ees trav­el­ling for work want to feel like they are at home when on the road, with 49 per cent cit­ing the com­forts of a real home as the rea­son to book an Airbnb. But in­creas­ingly ho­tels are heed­ing the call with work­friendly lobby lounges and even their own cowork­ing hubs, like NEST in the TRYP by Wyn­d­ham ho­tel in Dubai.

STICK TO A SCHED­ULE

If you need to meet dead­lines while you’re on the go, com­mit a block of time each morn­ing or af­ter­noon, de­pend­ing on what works for your own rhythm, and stick to it. Sip­ping that fresh co­conut on a Mex­i­can beach after­wards tastes so much sweeter when the work is done.

SEEK LAP­TOP-FRIENDLY HUBS

Be­fore you head straight to a cafe with more lap­tops than lat­tes, search for cowork­ing spa­ces or lo­cal li­braries to ditch easy dis­trac­tions (and dough­nuts). Re­li­able Wi-Fi can of­ten come in the most un­likely lo­ca­tions: think ser­vice sta­tions and laun­dro­mats. Who said work­ing re­motely wasn’t glam­orous?

CHARGE UP AT ANY OP­POR­TU­NITY

Un­less you’re lucky enough to be turn­ing left, re­mem­ber to charge up just be­fore board­ing a flight. Then, it’s a race against bat­tery life (and rea­son for a red and a movie when it dies).

GET ON THE CLOUD (IF YOU’RE NOT AL­READY)

Work out of Google Drive so your files are al­ways ac­ces­si­ble – es­pe­cially if your boss needs to see them when you’re at 35,000 feet.

DOWN­LOAD BE­FORE A FLIGHT

Long hours in the sky are gold for writ­ing or draft­ing email re­sponses that you can send off with a sat­is­fy­ing ping once you’re back in Wi-Fi. Although, with more and more air­lines of­fer­ing con­nec­tion in the sky …

BUY SKYPE CREDIT OR IN­VEST IN AN IN­TER­NA­TIONAL PLAN

Be­ing able to jump on a call and not stress about a gazil­lion dol­lar phone bill at the end of the con­ver­sa­tion will save pre­cious pina co­lada time.

JUST RE­MEM­BER TO SWITCH OFF

Prefer­ably be­fore the end of the day. You are sup­posed to be on hol­i­days, re­mem­ber?

PIC­TURE: IS­TOCK

Dig­i­tal no­mads are mix­ing busi­ness and leisure in flex­i­ble work­ing en­vi­ron­ments.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.