Over the past year, remote work has become an increasingly popular option for employers and businesses. In many cases, it's mandatory for at least the time being.
This style of work opens up an entire world of possibilities for employees. Avid travelers are now faced with an exciting range of new ways to combine work and wanderlust. Here's our guide to best tips and tricks for how you can make the most of remote working situation when you're combining it with a vacation.
Check the WiFi Speeds
Wireless internet access is available at almost every resort location, but that doesn't mean the connection speeds are suitable for your needs for video conferencing and downloading files, etc. You can expect to see two real categories of internet speeds.
Casual internet speeds at resorts are similar to those in private residences. These speeds are fast enough to stream videos to televisions and smartphones, often at speeds up to 1080p. Typically, this is all that most people need for remote work. Casual speeds are those between 25 Mbps and 200 Mbps.
Professional internet speeds (greater than 200 Mbps) are better for heavy data usage. These are necessary if you want to transfer gigabyte-size files quickly, and they usually aren't available at all resorts. However, you might get professional speeds if you can plug into the internet with an ethernet connection instead of using the property's WiFi service.
Schedule Your Work Times
You can hardly call it a vacation if you're always thinking about work. That's why you should schedule your work times so you can get things done, then put it aside and enjoy the rest of your time in your chosen idyllic destination (say, The Bahamas or Barbados?) to the fullest.
We suggest getting everything done in the morning. That might not work if the rest of your team is too far away, so you might need to do some work around lunchtime or even through the afternoon.
If possible, try to schedule your work times and any necessary meetings before you head off on your vacation. Maybe your team will be flexible if they know that you plan to enjoy a working vacation for a week or two. If you know when to be available for work and when you can focus entirely on yourself, it's far easier to plan the rest of your trip activities, such as hikes, boat outings and other excursions.
Select a Working Zone
Whether you're staying overnight or for several weeks, try to pick a specific area of your accommodations and designate it as your working area. This makes it easier to put your work behind you when you're finished with it. You might pick an area as small as a single table. Or, if your rental space is large enough, you could designate an entire separate room for your working environment.
Avoid taking work outside of your residence. Doing so will greatly diminish your experience and negate the reason you decided to work from a tropical Caribbean paradise.
For example, vacations in Antigua offer access to plenty of upscale bars, swimming pools, fun activities and serene spaces. It will difficult to fully enjoy all the amenities and experiences if you let your work environment sprawl into the places meant for relaxation and rejuvenation.
VPNs (virtual private networks) are a useful tool for doing remote work. Even better, you can usually try one out with a free trial while you're on vacation, which means you won't have to pay for it unless you want to keep using it.
The main reason to consider using a VPN is that some workplace systems have security measures that will slow or even deny you access to certain websites. A VPN allows you to set up a "private network" and designate your location even while you're using a public network. This offers greater security from hackers and avoids any problems, such as blocked access to websites or systems you need for work.
Some companies offer VPN services to employees traveling internationally, so be sure to ask your company whether it can set you up on a VPN for your working vacation.
Craft Your Creature Comforts
Extra comforts are one of the best perks of working remotely. The little extras that come along with a relaxing resort vacation might even help boost your work productivity.
Drinks: Savoring local coffee blends is a great way to start your day. You can enjoy a taste of your destination, and delicious coffees may help you wake up and become energized to power through all of your work. If you're not a coffee fan, juice blends can offer a sweet alternative. After work, it's time to celebrate, settle into vacation mode and try the regional wines, cocktails and beers.
Cuisine: Just like having drinks around, setting out a little food, like regional fruits and nuts, can make work far more enjoyable and keep up your energy levels. We recommend dishes that you can eat with one hand, including fruit bowls or sandwiches.
Be Bright: Lighting can vary by room. A bright environment helps mood and productivity. Make sure to have a good view of your scenic surroundings. If needed, you can ask the staff to provide an extra lamp (table or free-standing) to light your work area. Lamps can also make it easier to work without disturbing others.
Seating: Why sit in a small, hard chair while you're on vacation? Plush seating is easily the best option, and it can help you stay relaxed while you focus on work. You can move the furniture in your room around a little if necessary to create the best ergonomics for your time at the resort.
Room Service: If you know when you plan to finish working, you can ask the resort staff to provide food or drinks at a scheduled time. It's a great way to change your pace and begin focusing on the real reason you decided to work from paradise.
Thanks for reading,