5 Ideal Places To Work In For Digital Nomads And Freelancers
Location is flexible for remote workers and freelancers. But sometimes, we don’t know where to work when we actually have work to do. Besides, not all places with wi-fi are exactly "work vibes" unless you're desperate to beat a deadline. So today, I'm going to share 5 ideal workplaces to work in when your work lets you go anywhere.
What is it about cafes that makes one of the ideal places to work in? It's probably the smell and taste of coffee that helps us focus. Then the easygoing ambience warms us as we do our tasks. Plus, most cafés allow lots of natural light that make you feel inspired to work during the day.
Cafés are the ultimate hotspots for professionals and students. It's easier to hold meetings with clients there because it's a warm public place . Also, they really are built for the purpose of meeting up for work or friends. Since not everyone is there exactly to work, you feel a little calmer knowing the diversity of what people do in the café.
Not all cafés have plugs. If they do, sometimes it's only like at a very hidden area... and sometimes there's just one socket. There's a 50% chance that someone's using it to.
Apart from technical difficulties, it's also quite expensive to regularly buy coffee just for the sake of work. A total of $20/week just for coffee is a huge expense, long term wise.
And the more known a coffee shop, the more chances are there's a rowdy group of high schoolers or aunties chatting it up... Or worse, there's a Top 40 pop song playing in the background. So always bring your earphones.
Using co-working spaces is more affordable than renting an office. You share a desk with other workers, and on other days you have one empty desk all to yourself. You may not work directly with those who share the same table as you do. But that's the idea of co-working–a bunch of professionals in one shared location. You can pay "rent" for long-term use or pay for only a single day use. It's all up to you.
Co-working spaces are the closest you can get to working in an office. You can bring your own food if you're on a strict diet or if you feel like saving up. And almost all the time, there's free coffee so you don't need to get a $4 americano.
Working with other people means you can meet potential clients or people to collaborate with. Saves us the hassle of applying to biddings on Upwork every now and then, noh? And that means you'll avoid the awkward socialization you make at seminars.
Also, a lot of co-working spaces have separate meeting rooms in case you want a more professional, private set up for your discussion.
Each co-working space is unique, so there are some missing features. One co-working space I encountered then had no microwave. I had to eat my packed lunch cold, and it didn't help that the pantry's A/C was too chilly.
Some co-working spaces have mini-offices for start ups, so chances are you'll run into a very lively bunch... You can ask them nicely to tone it down, but how they'll respond is beyond your control.
Lastly, you can't leave your stuff or customize your desk the way you would as an employee or at a home office. It's not just your space... others will need to use it too. If you want to make it "your space", pay for a longer term use.
Guess what, your alma mater's library makes a great office too! Although it mind remind you of the time you had to write a 2,500 word paper, it's very conducive to get you finishing your tasks. Plus there are a lot of online and offline resources at your convenience! Make this as an excuse to visit your university and feel like you're a student again.
A card is your best weapon! It makes access easier whether it's exclusively for a stand-alone library or an alumni card to enter your university's library. Make sure to check the library's guidelines for entry.
Another good thing is keeping quiet in the library is the main rule, so 95% chance there's no obnoxious person (or a group) that will ruin your process. And sometimes, you're given the chance to sleep so that's an absolute blessing.
Let's state the obvious: you can't exactly eat while you work, an occurrence all of us are used to by now. You most likely won't want to get crumbs on the books or wet the pages, so that's the downfall.
And the "quiet zone" rule is also a con of its own. You can't meet a client there, so try any of the other options for meeting places.
Hotel / Hostel / B&B
Working in a hotel room is a home office away from home. You're in a refreshing environment–with wi-fi! What's not to like?
However. this isn't just for those who are traveling. Something about hotel rooms and hostel common areas make us feel like we're starting fresh, which means new ideas arrive quicker and clearer. You can book a staycaytion even to the B&B nearest to your place and make use of your "relaxation" time.
Meanwhile, hostels have a slightly different set-up. You can bunk in a dorm room (same sex or co-ed) and do some work on your bed, or go to the common lounge where you can work a la coworking space.
What's in a hotel room? Good lighting, free-wifi, and lots of privacy. (Bonus: room service!) Plus, you have a different view to inspire you. Your window will frame the beach, the mountain, or the skyline. Nothing screams work-life balance than relaxing on your hotel bed with your laptop.
For the case of hostels, their common lounges provide a social, working environment that digital nomads are very fond of. It's a good way to broaden your network with different professionals around the world.
The costs of booking a hotel room to work in is fine if you're definitely traveling. But regularly doing this puts a heavy burden on the wallet, especially when you won't need the room for a long time. If you're going to book a hotel room just to work, make sure you spend at least a night so you wouldn't feel like your staycation is cut off.
"Duh, why didn't I put this at the start?" I think this is the obvious choice and the top option for most freelancers. Home is where the office is. There are so many Pinterest inspirations on setting up home offices, regardless of whatever work you do. Plus you already have a wi-fi connection at home, and you most likely won't need to go anywhere at all–so why go out of the house?
Summed in six words, working at home means this: you don't have to get out. Yes, convenience at damn last. First, you already have an Internet connection. Then, you can make your food at home, resist straying away from your diet, and take those mandatory naps. Plus, you save time and money spent on commuting. Total win for your health and wallet!
Then, there are tons of home office ideas on Pinterest you can incorporate at your home. That desk inspiration you saved in your board months ago can turn into a real thing.
While working at home is a top choice for most freelancers, it has its downfalls. Focusing is a challenge when your bed is right around the corner. And it's even harder when our bed is the office. It's good for some days, but long term it makes us feel lazy. We open our laptop and next thing we know, we're rewatching the first season of Riverdale. Tough, isn't it? Then, there's loneliness. Unless you have family or pets around, then it feels eerily silent. Perfect for introverts, but extroverts (and some ambiverts like me) will get cabin fever easily.
Working remotely gives us so many options on where to work. Depending on our taste, we may find ourselves focusing more in one place than the other. But that's the beauty of it–we find places best for our situation, and then make it our regular spot. We can stick with one, or try them all! The first step is to take our definition of "office" out of the box, and find a unique, inspiring place to get things done.
How about you, where's your working place? Tell me in the comments below!