From the ashes of 2020, the “new normal” of day-to-day business is taking shape as companies embrace remote work in the long-term and the summer travel season approaches. Operating “out of office” comes with no shortage of challenges, but where there’s a will (or at least Wi-Fi), there’s a way.
Our times call not for a hero, but a digital nomad: a tech-savvy wayfarer for the open road who can tell you how to speed up your hotel Wi-Fi, change a tire, wipe a hard drive, treat a snake bite and disguise your Zoom background as you tune in from parts unknown.
Whether it’s running off blazing fast fiber in the backyard office, daisy-chaining to the interwebs from the shore via mobile hotspot, sharing a Google Doc at 30,000 feet or posting up for a quick McWi-Fi, I’ve run the proverbial telecommute connectivity gauntlet and witnessed the good, the bad and the glitchy of remote work.
I’ve telecommuted for years covering a number of beats ranging from how-tos to travel guides and I will be penning a pair of upcoming columns for TechRepublic: the Digital Nomad city guides travel series and Rethink Remote: a telecommuter tips tour de tech.
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Digital nomad city guides: Online and out of office
Whether it’s seeing the country via a multi-day Amtrak adventure, swerving cacti on the Baja peninsula or cruising Interstate 40 through the scenic Blue Ridge Parkway, I’ve experienced the joys and potholed peril of wanderlust; enduring the laggiest of complimentary networks and lived to tell the tale.
The Digital Nomad city guides series will serve as a travel handbook for top destinations around the country, detailing everything you need to know to work, play and maybe even get a raise from the road.
Which hotels offer the best extended-stay workation discounts? Which coffee shops have the choicest cup of java and the fastest Wi-Fi? Where’s the hidden gem to grab a cocktail or pint after hours? What’s the quintessential local dish you have to try before your late checkout? And, most importantly, how do you blend in with the locals and not look like a total tourist?
I’ll give you the skinny on these questions with plenty of pro tips to boot.
So you’ve got a wild idea to work from the beach via mobile hotspot, but you’re worried about lagging and being booted from the meeting? You should be. I’ll test the concept first and let you in on the drawbacks. What’s it like to work from a hotel for a week straight and what’s the vibe around continental breakfasts post-pandemic? I’ll tune in from the road and let you know. In fact, I’ll rank the waffles at every hotel I visit. Scout’s honor.
Rethink Remote: Think outside the office
Without the in-person interactions and face time inherent in on-site positions, remote work requires a level of professional and social mastery. Needless to say, baptism by digital fire can be a rough go for those new to telecommuting.
The Rethink Remote column series will function as recurring tips and how-to series for people just beginning a regular telecommute and WFH pros. This includes guides to designing a productive workspace and making work friends virtually to more advanced offerings on time management techniques a la the Pomodoro method and more.
Planned Digital Nomad city guides
- Asheville, North Carolina
- Portland, Oregon
- Austin, Texas
- New Orleans, Louisiana
- Charleston, South Carolina
- Savannah, Georgia
- Nashville, Tennessee
- Portland, Maine
- Reno, Nevada
- Louisville, Kentucky
Have a WFH question for the regular mailbag series or a city suggestion to add to the list? Email me and let me know: email@example.com