⇦ Go back to blog

5 practical tips for a successful workation

Live in London but would like to be surfing every weekend? How about a workation in Valencia.

Or maybe you're studying remotely at your home in New York but you love Mexican food and sun? Book a plane to Cancun! Or maybe Valencia? Or a any small european country?

If you're lucky and have some spare time you might even learn spanish or learn brazilian portuguese.

With more and more teams realising the benefits of remote work, workations became a popular way of changing your scenery while continuing to be productive. Classes can be run online and work can happen in virtual offices. You can even attend events that are happening on another continent. While this all sounds great, it requires a bit of preparation to be enjoyable.

1. Stay connected

One of the most common pitfalls of working while travelling is unreliable or weak internet connection. What else could damage your workation more than not being able to attempt an important ZOOM flat.social meeting or push that hot fix commit to master?

a) Always check the internet speed with a the hotel / airbnb before making a booking. Even if the area has on average good internet connection… well it’s on average and there might be outliers and the host might’ve skimped on broadband cost.

b) Make sure that you are within the WiFi reach. Alright so the connection seems to be amazing. Do you know how close to the router will you be? Don’t let the positioning of your workstation affect reliability of the connection and have a wifi adapter handy.

2. Survive the heat

Going to a warm place? We like that, you might even catch a bit of non-screen suntan! Heat comes with its own problems though and you better be ready to handle those and not compromise your productivity.

a) Keep yourself cool while working. If you’re bad at handling heat, make sure that the exact area where your workstation will be located has no air conditioning. Many listings have A/C in them and most probably it’s in the bedroom.

b) Keep your laptop cool while working - it can overheat too, especially if you’re joining a multi-party video call or want to do any compute-expensive task. Joining a call on Microsoft Teams or Google Meet can melt your laptop pretty quickly. Getting a small fan to put in front of your machine or a cooling pad might be a good idea to avoid a fire hazard.

3. Keep your spine happy

You've got used to having an amazing workstation in your own place - nice chair and a good desk are important and strongly advised! Remote work has been with us for a while and majority of us have adapted their home offices. Most probably though, you won’t be taking one with you. Problem is, hotels and airbnbs are notoriously bad prepared to handle guests who plan to spend a lot of their time in front of a screen.

You might be lucky enough to book a place that has an office setup but unfortunately most of us won’t. If the setup in the place you booked is not in your favour:

Keep your head up high with a Roost Stand. It’s a small nifty piece of plastic that can unfold to hold you laptop to a higher position. A positive side effect is that it will keep it cooler too. Separate keyboard and a mouse / trackpad are a must for this setup.

Ever heard about the wardrobe trick? If the shelves are positioned at the right height you might be able to turn a wardrobe in your Airbnb or hotel into a standing desk setup. Neat. How about a drying rack? Well… that can work too.

4. From two screens to one

Another luxury you might be used to in your own workspace is having a second screen. While you can travel with it (I do - 27 inch LG fits into an Osprey Sojourn 80 perfectly) it’s not the weight that everyone wants to carry around.

a) Use your iPad as a second screen. A nice hack for this situation might be to use your iPad as a second screen. MacOS recently has introduced a feature called SideCar which is perfect for this use case. Combined with a Roost stand you might be even able to put your iPad on your keyboard as the laptop will be positioned at an angle.

b) Buy a small 15” travel screen. Some of the popular choices is Desklab 4K Touchscreen Monitor. While portable screens might not give you a lot of screen estate, you will still see a boost in productivity

c) Ditch the laptop in favour of the new 24 inch iMac completely. While this might be more extreme, the dimensions of the new 24-inch iMac make it one of the most portable desktop computers that we’ve seen so far. If you purchase it without a stand and get one separately, it should be easier to fit into the check-in luggage (with a little bit of safety padding!).

5. Don’t loose touch with your coworkers

Being out of office or working 100% remotely doesn't mean that you have to miss all the social events and connection with your coworkers. With flat.social you can create an amazing playful virtual space where you can all hang out together. You can use it as your virtual office or an adhoc creative meeting space. Wanna see more? Hit on the button below to see the demo video :)

I love by how interactive flat.social is!

Rafal, organizer @ Creative Jobs

Online team activities

Build a Virtual Space for your Team

Remote teams use flat.social to organise the most creative meetings & social events.