Tips for Working Productively From a Hotel Room

Last updated April 4, 2024

Here’s the truth. You can work productively from your hotel room!

As if that smile on your face couldn’t get any bigger, imagine yourself arriving in the hotel lobby. Work-life doesn’t get much better than this.

Envision yourself working from a hotel room, ordering room service, wearing a blouse or button-down with PJ’s or sweats on the bottom. Then jetting off like a rockstar to the airport for your first-class upgrade…

Sounds glamorous, right? Well, like Hollywood movie productions, it all seems flashy until you’ve actually lived it.

Let’s be honest. Working from a hotel room takes organization, focus and effort. Here are some tips to maximize your space to work productively from a hotel room.

Set Up a Nest 

We, humans, are creatures of habit and habitat, and having a “home” for our workstations is a part of that. Having a desk and a chair space to set up your laptop and work zone is a must. Ensure the room that you book has a chair, office desk space, nearby plugs and a light of some sort.

Lying in bed will only make your mind want to go back to bed, no matter how many coffees or matcha lattes you’ve had. Plus, your productivity will slump due to poor posture and lack of proper oxygen.

Get Organized ASAP

We all know that feeling of running late to a yoga class—no zen there. Running late to a meeting because of your Wi-Fi connection or you need to set up your workstation (see above tip)? Even worse of a hot mess.

Give yourself time. Remember you’re in a new space. I usually give myself double the time it would take me in a hotel room to get prepared as it would back in my home office to prepare.

Besides, if you’re early, what’s the worst that could happen? You now have a few extra minutes to spare to write that email, respond to a few social posts or write out your daily goals.

Make a Schedule

No, really. Make a schedule and stick to it. Considering you’re away from home, you’re already out of routine.

 A schedule will help you develop some level of order. We all know travel is chaos! Sticking to a schedule will help you to stay on target and task with what needs to get done in the day ahead, and keep your mind and space in order.

Humans need schedules in order to be productive, or it takes that much more effort to create order from chaos when a Google Calendar could have saved us the headache (and the pain of missing a potential deadline).

Go Paperless

Papers are like rats. They multiply and get out of control. Especially when traveling. Traveling ensures that you’re already disorganized from your space. 

Try to keep everything digital. Digitized documents/items will minimize your baggage weight, cut down on anything getting out of place in your new “office space” and prevent you from losing an important document that could have been saved on your desktop or hard drive.

Brew Coffee (or Tea) in the Room

This saves you time in the morning to set up your “office space.” A warm drink can also give you a quick pick-me-up or soothe your throat if you’re doing a lot of talking during any virtual calls.

Have a Backup Wi-Fi Option

Most rooms these days come with Wi-Fi included, or you can purchase an add-on to get 5G or high-speed access.

That being said, anything really goes when you’re in some more remote areas of the world. I can recall quite a few dropped Zoom meetings from a room in Barcelona and little to no service when traveling through parts of the Riviera Maya, Mexico.

Ensure your hotel room has Wi-Fi. Verify that the hotel’s lobby has a backup. See if there’s a dedicated office room in the hotel. You can even go as far as bringing a Wifi HotSpot if you know you’re going to be very remote.

Pro tip: if your video conference call is struggling, try turning off the video and using just the audio to connect. While your team may not see your face, it’s far better than having your voice cut out and your face frozen on a screen.

Stand and Take Calls Whenever Possible

Sitting is the new smoking. I can’t take credit for that line, but it does resonate deeply with me. 

Sitting for too long can do terrible harm to our bodies, minds and age us drastically. Get up, stretch, move around, take calls standing, take walks between calls, go to the gym midday and do whatever else you can to avoid sitting for more than an hour at a time.

Set a timer every hour to move, stretch or walk for at least 15 minutes to counter it. 

It’s Not So Difficult!

Working remotely from a hotel room may not be for everyone, but I personally love the excitement of it. 

Once I was able to implement some of the above strategies, working remotely has become more enjoyable. In fact, it has been more inspiring for my work and overall more productive.

What’s a tip that you use when working remotely? And, what’s something you struggle with when it comes to your work/life balance? Your question can be featured in an upcoming article in this series on Vacayou

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