2020 brought about one of the biggest revolutions in the workplace—widespread remote work. Today, it’s clear that “work-from-home,” is here to stay. Even as offices open back up, employers are becoming more and more flexible with work schedules, allowing remote and hybrid work options to prospective employees looking for flexibility.
Working remotely just makes sense. Studies have shown those who work from home are more productive, doing more work in less time. Remote work eliminates daily commutes and lends to more efficient group meetings with less wasted time. Remote work has upended the cubicle and redefined what it means to work smarter, not harder.
Jobs that pair well with remote work span industries. You can work remotely in:
- Software Engineering
- Customer Service
…and so much more.
Here at Camping World, we’re excited about remote work, not just because our own employees work remotely, but because our valued camping customers are remote workers too.
As internet access improves nationwide, and remote work continues to be commonplace, RVing opens up a whole new world of possibilities for location independence. Why work from home when you can work from the Rocky Mountains, or the beach, or the bayou?
There’s no rule book out there for how to work remotely from an RV. But make no mistake, many RVers’ve bravely and successfully made the leap to live on the road. It’s not just entrepreneurs and the self-employed who are roaming nomads. Employees with 9-5 jobs are hitting the road too. Our very own partners, Lindsay and the family of Lanes Less Traveled, are remote workers. The couple and their family have been traveling for nearly two years with no plans of stopping yet.
Watch their video for top tips on how to manage a 9-5 job while on the road. Or, read on for their expert advice about how to shift from working-from-home to working-from-the-road.
Get the Right Gear
Just like your home office, your RV office needs certain tools to help you work efficiently. Invest in a good pair of noise-canceling headphones. These will come in handy if there’s unexpected noise around your campsite, like construction or traffic. Headphones with a built-in mic will make your Zoom calls all the smoother.
A laptop is a likely standard in any remote work setup, but you might like having an extra monitor too to multitask projects. Small, portable monitors are easy to come by and will make a big difference in keeping your digital workspace tidy.
Whatever your remote job, don’t be shy about investing in the right tools for the job. For Lindsay Lane, that’s a nice DSLR camera and photo-editing software to take and curate the photos she uses as a blogger and influencer.
Perhaps the most important piece of gear to have onboard is a reliable internet connection. Though Starlink internet is promising for RVers, it’s not quite ready for widespread use. Instead, get a WiFi system and cell phone booster installed onboard your RV. A jetpack or hotspot device is essential for those times when the internet isn’t what it was advertised to be. In a pinch, you’ll want to hotspot from a cellular connection to get work done. For heavy uploads and downloads, you may want to swing in a coffee shop or library to get these tasks done quickly.
Create an RV Workspace
Real estate is precious inside an RV, so make space work for you. Find a part of the RV that will be your office. Make sure you have a comfortable, clear, and clean space to work, free of messes and distractions. Don’t be afraid to modify your RV to customize it for your needs. Elicit the help of the Camping World design and renovation centers to bring your remote workspace to life.
Put on your creativity cap as you consider where you want to work. Could your desk collapse down and stow away? Could it also serve another purpose when not in use? RV living is all about efficiency, so take careful consideration when designing your ideal workspace.
Working 9-5 hours on a Monday-Friday schedule will affect how frequently you move your RV. You will likely find yourself moving the RV to a new campsite on the weekends. Moving days can sometimes be tiring and stressful, and that’s no way to spend your weekend.
Instead, slow down your travel pace. Stay in one location for at least two weeks so you give yourself time to get comfortable, explore the local area, and rest in your downtime. Remember: RVing as a full-timer isn’t a race. Find your “sweet spot,” for how often you want to move the RV. For the Lanes, it’s every two weeks. For me, I stayed put for 1 month at a time, which allowed me ample time to get to know the local culture, food, and attractions without feeling as if the clock was ticking on my time there.
Pro Tip: Campground rates get cheaper the longer you stay. Monthly rates are almost always the best deal. Many times you can stay cheaper for a month than it would cost to stay for two weeks.
Think of Your Office View
With the remote work revolution, you can practically work from anywhere. Think about what you want your office view to look like. Plan ahead so you’re not scrambling to find the next place to go. Sit down and plan out months at a time. This will prevent you from feeling stressed in your off-hours about where your next destination will be, and whether it will have reliable internet.
Consider the weather, and what activities you’d like to do in your off-hours. If snow sports are your passion, then a winterized RV built as a basecamp will allow you to pursue this sport when you’re not working. Maybe surfing, kayaking or paddling help you de-stress after a long day at work. You’ll want an RV with ample storage for your paddle gear. Do you like to work outside? Then following fair weather will be your top priority as you follow the changing of the seasons.
Life is full of unexpected twists and turns–that’s true for both RV living and residential living. Working from the road will have its own kind of hiccups: Sometimes the internet doesn’t work, construction is noisy, weather rolls in, or itineraries get re-tooled. Just roll with it–after all, your office is on wheels.
This article was first published by Camping World.