For many people in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, the way they work has changed. A large percentage of office-based workers have spent the last 18 months working from home. Some companies are now emerging from the pandemic having realized that they can trust their employees to choose where they work best. So, remote working is in everywhere now.
Whilst home working isn’t for everyone, some people do find that home working offers greater flexibility and improved work-life balance. 57% of employees surveyed by Indeed stated that they felt more productive working at home. Some companies offer a completely remote working policy, (either permanent or on an agreed fixed-term basis). This can allow an employee to move around geographically wherever they want to. Whilst this is, of course, subject to work responsibilities, it can open up the world to travelers outside of normal holiday experiences. At this point, Holiday Swap comes to mind. What do you think about swapping homes and finding the flexibility for remote working while traveling?
Experience without the cost
Holidays can be expensive, and often we choose the safe option, such as a hotel. Whilst a hotel certainly will offer clean rooms and wifi, they are not the most practical options for a long-term stay because of cost and space. After a week of working in a hotel room, the novelty of travel-size toiletries and free tea and coffee can quickly wear off. When you factor in the nightly cost, it’s unlikely that you’ll want to stay there for an extended period of time.
They also don’t offer the most authentic experience. House swaps are likely to be in smaller neighborhoods rather than large tourist complexes. As a result, they allow you to immerse yourself in the local scene. Additionally, it can be quite hard to pack for a trip longer than a few weeks without leaving out some home comforts. A house swap allows you to have all those cosy extras, like blankets and coffee machines. Even without having to try and squeeze your French press into your suitcase. Just make sure you agree with the person you’re swapping with the items they’re happy for you to use and vice versa.
Things to consider when you home swap
One of the crucial aspects to arrange before you agree to a house swap is how it will work logistically. Especially if there is a time difference, it’s important to make sure that your employer is on board with you being out of the country. Also, check what information they need from you for any paperwork.
Make sure everyone you come in contact with at work is clear on how they can reach you. Moreover, make sure how your workflow will be managed. If you already work in a self-managed way, this is likely to be easier. However, if you usually are allocated your work by someone else or need to be in a lot of meetings, make sure this is all clarified before you go. Not only is this professional and polite, but by looking at each of your responsibilities. You iron out any problems before you’re out of the country and not much can be done to resolve it. Communication is key.
Another important consideration is the rules around travel and entering other countries. Whilst the idea of being abroad is exciting for many of us, it’s important to practice responsible tourism. Make sure you are following all the appropriate guidelines. This is also crucial if you are hoping to bring any pets with you into the country. So make sure that you do your research and fill out any required paperwork.
House swapping is a great way to use your remote working policy to the max, offering a way to travel without having to take annual leave. It offers you a home away from home whilst keeping costs down. So you can take an extended trip and can still afford to have plenty of space. Why not make the most of the opportunity?
By Jessica Fierce – Content Producer and Researcher