As businesses transition to remote work and hybrid models, more people are adopting the concept of a “workcation” as part of their lifestyle. In particular, 67% of Americans are taking up workcations to “recharge their mental and emotional batteries,” boosting their overall productivity and helping them better cope with burnout. Given the appeal of enjoying a change of scenery, it’s unsurprising that many remote workers are turning into digital nomads— remote workers who travel to different locations.
To manage their budget, most remote workers stay in cheap accommodations. Hostels are a popular option as not only are they affordable, but they present many opportunities to meet other budget travelers or digital nomads and do a variety of activities together. Due to the social nature of hostels, it may seem tricky to get work done. To help you stay productive, here are some tips on working remotely from a hostel.
Research the quality of internet connection
Most remote workers need an internet connection to complete their work, so it’s essential to research how good the signal is at a hostel before confirming your booking. Our post “The Risks of Travelling (and how to avoid them)” highlights how some hostel and property websites can sometimes be misleading, so it’s essential to do a deep search of customer reviews, especially negative ones. If there are consistent issues being mentioned, such as the Wi-Fi being poor despite their marketing, it may be best to look for another place to stay.
If you have a particularly important online call or deadline, consider getting a service provider that provides data. As shared by The Entrepreneur on remote work, being able to turn on your mobile hotspot in case the Wi-Fi connection is down can save you from a headache. If your average day involves a lot of downloading and streaming videos, like video call meetings, it’s recommended that you get a plan of at least 40GB of data per month.
Prepare your meetings in advance
Hostels aren’t always the quietest places to work, so it can be difficult to have online meetings. To better prepare your environment, it helps to plan your meetings in advance. For instance, you may choose to work remotely from a hostel that offers a co-working space, where you can rent private spaces by the hour.
Aside from a good working environment, it’s crucial that you optimize your meeting times. LHH’s advice on one-on-one meetings recommends sending an agenda beforehand. This should include relevant, necessary points to be tackled so that people are prepared and organized for any discussion areas.
You can make this agenda a collaborative effort, allowing your meeting partners to provide their “must” discuss list for better work accountability and progression. By having efficient meetings, you not only keep interactions dynamic, efficient, and productive but also have more time for other activities throughout the day.
Schedule work during “lull” hours
Some hostels don’t have a separate co-working space, and you may have to work in the hostel’s common room. However, hostels are social spaces and can get quite busy and loud at certain times of the day. If you want to minimize socialization during work time, try scheduling your work in the middle of the day.
Around 11:00 am, most guests are awake and away for their daily activities, so the common room is usually more conducive for work. You can also subtly signal that you want to focus on your work by wearing noise-canceling headphones— indicating that you don’t want to talk. Most people will respect your space, but you can always politely tell someone that you’re concentrating on remote work.
Socialize and find work buddies
Being a digital nomad can get lonely, especially if most new friends only stay for a short-term vacation. When staying in a hostel for the long term, we recommend using the social space to find people that may also be following a similar remote work lifestyle.
You might be able to meet people that are more organized and business-oriented, and who may make great work buddies in the near future. Aside from networking while working remotely from your hostel, you can use social media or dedicated apps to find other remote workers that you can socialize and work with. Digital nomad apps like MeetUp can be a great way to link to like-minded professionals, even matching you to suggested friends based on shared interests and activities.