Home > Companies Q&A > Remote Worker Insights > Where is the best or worst place you’ve worked remotely?

    Where is the best or worst place you’ve worked remotely?

  • Ciao Bambino! Inc.

    Worst: The car on the side of the road.

    Best: Any Four Seasons Hotel.

     6 votes |
  • Articulate, Inc.

    Worst – wherever there is intermittent internet connectivity!

    Best – Shaw Island, Washington.

     3 votes |
  • Balsamiq

    Worst: a truck stop on the freeway. Best: a beach in Vietnam. I have photos of both if you want them. 🙂

     3 votes |
  • Go Fish Digital

    It’s usually a family member’s house during a trip.  Extended family and in-laws never seem to have good internet connections – it is like a rule or something.

     3 votes |
  • Groove

    Best is from any beach 🙂 Worst is probably the floor of any airport.

     3 votes |
  • LoveToKnow

    I’ve answered work emails from a lot of places. The worst has probably been public restrooms while waiting for a kid to “go”. The weirdest? Maybe on an amusement park ride. The best – definitely on a balcony overlooking the ocean in Maui.

     3 votes |
  • Summit CPA Group

    The best place for sure is in the bleachers — watching my son’s baseball game.

     3 votes |
  • Trello

    Loud coffee shops with screaming babies. Best is my current office with my beloved treadmill desk! 🙂

     3 votes |
  • CloudPeeps

    Ubud in Bali still holds very near and dear to my heart. I was there in 2012 – just as the local ecosystem was growing with TEDxUbud, Hubud and numerous coliving initiatives including Startup Abroad. I also loved Tulum and Playa del Carmen in Mexico. I don’t have any worst locations as such – I don’t look back fondly of Vancouver because I was working remotely in 2011 while completing my masters thesis and that was just a torturous experience. I was recently in Boulder for a week where it absolutely poured back-to-back so feel it didn’t showcase as much of the benefits to being based there. Basically, there’s a pattern emerging here – it needs to be warm and sunny for me to love it!

     2 votes |
  • GitLab

    Any place with slow wifi feels like hell. Being on a beach in Thailand was great, except for the lifetime of my laptop 🙂

     2 votes |
  • Hippo Education

    Worst was a Lake House my family rented with a wifi router circa 1915. I had to work in the kitchen on top of the microwave 2 inches from the router for 3 days standing up, while little kids ran past me screaming all day. Not an ideal space. But, I still liked it better than cubicle days of old.

     2 votes |
  • SitePen

    Worst: Crunching myself into the corner on a tiny table and chair in a hotel room in the hopes of getting enough signal from the wimpy hotel wifi out in the middle of nowhere, Arizona.  

    Best:  Right in front of the fireplace in the middle of a snow day in winter.

     2 votes |
  • Attentiv

    Worst is probably large family gatherings where there’s lots of people I want to talk to and lots of people that want to talk to me (also because who wants to be that family member working on the phone in the corner).  I loved working remotely while we were in Maui for a couple weeks.  Nothing beats working on the balcony overlooking the ocean.

     1 vote |
  • Authentic Form & Function

    There’s nothing quite worse than sitting down at a chic coffee shop with a fresh drink, only to find out the internet connection is barely usable for email.

    The very best spot I’ve worked remotely in the past would have to be on the Shinkansen in Japan, penning a few thoughts while traveling by rail. Even though I wasn’t wifi connected at the time, it was amazing to sit back and consider how remote work enabled me such flexibility.

     1 vote |
  • Automattic

    Airplanes can be the best and worst place to work, depending on your seatmates and the flight. I often get some of my best thinking time on airplanes (especially transatlantic flights) because they’re one of the few places where you have fewer interruptions.

     1 vote |
  • Beutler Ink

    Worst location is a rental car, while my husband and I were driving from Ohio to Oregon on a summer road trip in 2013. Phone data coverage was spotty a lot of the time as we got out West and I would spend ages trying to send a single email. Best location is my friends’ house in Grange-over-Sands, Cumbria in the UK. They have a view out over Morecambe Bay from their living room and it was a spectacular backdrop to my work day.

     1 vote |
  • Collage.com

    I have a quick story about what was for a day or two the temporary worst location I worked remotely.  Back in 2008, I lived in Seattle and worked at Microsoft during a very severe snowstorm.  Typically, few people worked from home, but during the storm, few people could get to work, so a lot of people worked from home.  Or, at least, we attempted too.  So many people tried connecting to the VPN, that we effectively DOS-ed the system.  I was thus unable to connect and had to really take a snow day.

    The best location I’ve worked remotely is at my current job and apartment!

     1 vote |
  • Five Q

    Bad wifi no matter where you are is the worst. My best thinking is probably on airplanes or I’ve really enjoyed blending some work and family. So, I’ve had some productive moments in long car rides with my wife driving and me tethering into the team. It’s a mindset, really. Make every moment count.

     1 vote |
  • FlexProfessionals, LLC

    Earlier this fall, I spent the day working in a grassy area nestled in the middle of Catholic University’s campus. It was a few yards from where Pope Francis would celebrate a canonization mass as part of his much anticipated visit to the U.S. It was awesome to be present at such an exciting event (even if I only watched the festivities via a large screen, live feed). I did something for myself, plus I had quite a productive work day!

     1 vote |
  • Formstack

    This is a tough one. I’m not one to think that the best place is on a beach somewhere. When I’m working best, I’m probably either in a coffee shop with great pour overs or I’m in my office depending on what type of project I’m working on. The worst place is always where wifi is terrible.  

     1 vote |
  • GitHub, Inc.

    I’ve had some really productive times working in coffee shops and mid-flight on planes, but also other times those same environments have been terrible. Most of the time what makes the difference to me is my frame of mind, so I find that to get a predictable level of productivity, nothing beats my home-office. It’s a known quantity, and I have almost complete control over distractions, so even in a poor state of mind I can still achieve a suitable level of focus.

     1 vote |
  • Greenback Expat Tax Services

    Worst place: a house in Mas, outside of Ubud, several years ago. The internet line was weak and would go down every time it rained (and we moved into the house in the rainy season). I remember painstakingly scheduling meetings that would overlap with California/Bali/NY and then 50% of the time, having my internet connection go out midway through the call. We lasted only about a month in that house until we moved to the south of Bali where internet was more reliable.

    Best place: I like working out of our co-working space in Bali. But I also love the buzz of coffee shops and the feeling of being immersed in my own (working) world while listening to the buzz and hum of life around me. There are 2 or 3 coffee shops near me that I frequent and find I’m really productive. Where I work definitely depends on what I am working on. A strategy document is a great thing to work on in a coffee shop but a financial model requires me to be in the office with a big screen and space to stretch out.

     1 vote |
  • Help Scout

    For me the worst is the coffee shop or out in the open in a public space. I just don’t get how people do it. I need to have tunnel vision when I write and I plug in my headphones and turn up my Noisli app (usually the sounds of rain and a crackling fireplace). The best? My room or a library.

    help scout workspace

     1 vote |
  • Hubstaff

    The Philippines has awful Internet, but I have a lovely home office set up there so it’s both the best and worst place I’ve worked for different reasons. I also enjoyed working in Japan.

     1 vote |
  • ICUC Social

    Great question! I love taking my laptop and finding a great, local restaurant (with wifi and outlets) for an extended lunch once each week. Otherwise, I typically work from my Vancouver apartment or local coffee shop.

     1 vote |
  • Incsub

    Worst: Whenever getting my car’s oil changed or something else done. At least the time is productive.

    Best: Anytime I find myself sitting on a patio at a restaurant on a day with really nice weather. I think of all the people stuck in their offices while I am hard at work, perhaps with a cold pint nearby.

     1 vote |
  • Inpsyde GmbH

    Worst: In Cuba, having only a cell phone, bad internet and at a bus station. It was raining as hell and we had an emergency, which we finally fixed but I was completely wet at the end. Best: Also in Cuba, at the beach with a laptop, good internet reception from the hotel and a cold beer next to me. 🙂

     1 vote |
  • Inspired HR

    Places without a strong wifi connection can be difficult to work remotely from. Many countries overseas do not have the technology available that we do, which can sometimes be tricky. The best places I have worked remotely from are anywhere that I can put my feet up and enjoy some sunshine at the same time!

     1 vote |
  • Intridea/ Mobomo

    Worst location? Hmm, probably middle of nowhere Florida 🙂  The best location – Amsterdam (hands down!).

     1 vote |
  • InVisionApp

    Worst: a local coffee shop that started playing Christmas music on November 1.

    Best: my villa’s balcony when I was on holiday in Italy.   

     1 vote |
  • NodeSource

    Worst place is definitely any airplane without wifi or worse, slow wifi.

    Best place is Montego Bay, Jamaica.

     1 vote |
  • Scrapinghub

    I’ve worked remotely pretty much since I started my professional life in 2000. First fixing computers (that I brought home to repair), then managing servers, then programming, then managing a local company, and finally here at Scrapinghub where I took the best of my previous experiences to build the remote working company I always wanted to work for.

     1 vote |
  • Sococo

    I’m a pretty mobile worker, so I’d say I have always worked remotely no matter my location or job. However, I’ve had two experiences working remotely full time. First was back in the 80’s, when my wife started grad school at University of Minnesota. My company in New York allowed me to telecommute so we could move out there together.  The second is working here at Sococo, and working out of my home office. I’d have to say, that the tools we have at our disposal in this day and age make working at Sococo much, much easier than my time talking on the phone and using faxes and modems to share data!

     1 vote |
  • SoftwareMill

    Worst – can’t name any.

    Best – Hartbespoort near Johannesburg, South Africa during European winter 🙂

     1 vote |
  • Speak

    I actually did the cliche thing and worked from a beach in Hong Kong. This may have been simultaneously the best place and also the worst as our website needed emergency maintenance and I really just wanted to be enjoying the sun 😉

     1 vote |
  • Sticker Mule

    I don’t really have a best and worst location. Anytime Wifi isn’t working it’s a problem but that could be anywhere. Recently, we had a mini retreat at a cabin in Upstate, NY and that was quite nice.

     1 vote |
  • StudySoup

    The worst location is one where I don’t have a fixed schedule + location to work. I need some basics to be a successful remote worker. This includes a consistent place to call home, an easily accessible gym membership, a place with internet and a quiet spot.

    The best location is probably my home, or Lake Tahoe cabin (see below).

    Working from the cabin StudySoup
     
     1 vote |
  • Sutherland Global Services

    Best – I love the occasional quiet morning in a local coffee shop, Port City Java, if I can get away and am not required to be on the telephone.  Worst – haven’t found it yet! 🙂

     1 vote |
  • TeamGantt

    Worst: Starbucks with bad internet.

    Best: From a boat 🙂

     1 vote |
  • TeamSnap

    In the last couple years I’ve worked from Spain, Thailand, Nicaragua, Argentina, Costa Rica, Mexico, the Netherlands and Colombia. It’s all been awesome.

     1 vote |
  • Teleport

    Worst must be a late night call in an airport hotel room you’ve been stuffed for a cancelled flight, with almost-nonexistent wifi and half-eaten banana left on the sheets by the cleaning person.

    Once your work allows you to go remote you will find many more of the “bests” every new day, from the Pacific views in a Santa Monica beach highrise or on Maui to ski cabins with high sun melting the icicles behind your window. But I think I’ll pick a work session in my summer house on the Saaremaa island in the Baltic Sea where I got everything done over 4G while keeping watch of a slow-cooking leg of lamb in the outdoors smoker oven for 6 hours.

     1 vote |
  • The Cheat Sheet

    I’m picky about my work locations so the worst place I’ve worked was a busy McDonald’s, which really wasn’t that bad. The best place is simply my home office.

     1 vote |
  • Toggl

    I strongly prefer not to use any coworking spaces. I find these really odd. I guess it’s my personal freaktivity thing, as many people love these. The best places are where it’s easy to focus – no need for specific setups.

     1 vote |
  • Toptal

    Anywhere that has unreliable Internet, although I really haven’t had much of a problem with that in the last few years. New Zealand and Australia were maybe the worst. Prepaid 3G was very expensive, but the time zone was the real problem. It’s 19 hours ahead of San Francisco, so collaborating with people in California means waking up at 3AM, and your Saturdays/Mondays are complicated because your colleagues expect you to be working.

    The best place to work remotely? Probably Budapest. Budapest is amazing. It’s very inexpensive, and it’s an incredibly fun city. We actually moved there for a year to work on Toptal after I finished university, and I’ve been going back regularly ever since.

     

     1 vote |
  • Universal Mind, Inc.

    I haven’t encountered any bad remote locations yet. Best, would be working from a sailboat.

     1 vote |
  • Workfrom

    In a car, on the side of the road near Hell’s Canyon (in Oregon) was both one the worst and one of the best. The worst, because it was hot and I was pretty sure that a rancher up the road would think I was stalking their place and come out with a rifle. The best, because I’d just camped in Hell’s Canyon, got a sunrise hike in and didn’t have to take a day off of work. I just had to drive out of the canyon a ways and find cell phone reception on the side of the road to call into a meeting and get some coding done

     1 vote |
  • Bitovi

    Worst would be any coffee shop where the Internet goes out. I’ve had video calls stopped dead in their tracks due to this. Thank goodness for Google Hangout sessions on cell phones as a back up though.  

    The best is the beach while on a long vacation with my family.

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  • Blossom

    The worst would definitely be the trains from OEBB (train operator in Austria). No wireless, almost no space to move and always crowded. The best is my home office on a sunny afternoon when the sun shines right to my desk.

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  • DevriX

    Worst ones are the ones without a stable Internet connectivity and/or a way to purchase a sim card with a reliable connection.

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  • DVMelite

    My “worst” was also the funniest for me:  Jury Duty.  They had free Wi-Fi and there is always a lot of waiting around, so I used it to work.  I even joined some conference calls on “listen only” mode so I would not miss any team news.  The best place is on a snowy cold day in the house.  It reminds me how great my situation is that I do not have to fight ice and snow and bad traffic, I can instead concentrate on doing a good job!  

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  • Equivity

    Worst: Economy class in an airplane.  

    Best: A quiet coffee shop at 6 a.m.

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  • Eyeo GmbH

    Worst: On the sofa with my own kids nearby. Best: In my garden, when the weather is good.

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  • FMTC

    Worst: Waiting room of the mechanic’s garage, waiting to get my car fixed.
    Best: Cabana, poolside at an Orlando-area resort while my kids swam.

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  • GobySavvy

    Hawaii was the worst place to work. Because everything about Hawaii is distracting ;). The best was Berlin- there’s tons of remote workers, unique cafes, fast wifi, and friendly faces everywhere.

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  • Hanno

    Back in those days when I used to work almost 24/7? Trains, buses, planes, hotel rooms, and hostel rooms. There’s nothing quite like taking an amazing trip through the length of Vietnam and almost ruining your thumbs by running your business in a series of huge emails instructing people to do things back at home. The best place? Well, it varies, but those moments where you’re sitting somewhere different, doing a few hours of your workday, and you catch yourself thinking “man, this is really something special”. There’s no feeling quite like working from the middle of a jungle and knowing that once you shut your laptop, you’ll be done for the day and ready to take a dip in the pool!

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  • Kin HR

    Best was Dubai! In a cafe right across from Burj Khalifa.

    kin hr working

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  • Melewi

    Worst – Anywhere where Internet is not stable.

    Best – This is so tough to decide! A few of the best:

    • The Infinity Pool at Marina Bay Sands in Singapore
    • A coffee shop beside a remote beach in the Philippines
    • Right beside my playing toddler. 🙂
    • Next to a ski slope in a small Japanese town
    • Next to the Sydney Opera House with the Sydney Harbour Bridge in sight
    • From a boat in rural Vietnam!
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  • Modern Tribe

    I worked for a month from Barbados in 2014 and Hawaii in 2010 from a condo overlooking good surf. I love the flexibility my life provides. Perhaps the greatest place was from the NICU for a month while my son incubated. The high life is amazing, but the freedom to be there when my family needed me and still be able to run my business and engage with my team is priceless.

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  • Mokriya

    The worst (and I hate to say this because the place itself is magical) would have to be Bali. The WIFI was just not up to scratch when I last visited. The best would be an inspiring little co-working space in Stockholm, Sweden called Knackeriet.

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  • Sanborn Media Factory

    Worst: any flight that I pay for WiFi on and it barely works.
    Best: Any flight where the WiFi works like a charm.

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  • SimpleTexting

    Worst: working at home with my daughter crying in the background.

    Best: On the beach somewhere tropical like Dominican

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  • Timely

    Worst location is probably going to be tomorrow. It’s my youngest son’s first day of daycare. I want to be present, but not get in the way of him integrating with the programme. So my plan is to find a corner and do some work in a room full of 2 year olds. If that’s not work/life blend, I’m not sure what is. 🙂

    Best location is, of course, home.

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  • Tortuga

    China because of the Great Firewall. I never realized how often I use Google and social media.

    The best places have always been about who is there (then the Wi-Fi speeds). I enjoyed working from the Hive in Bangkok because of the great people I met there. We’ve also had great times on our retreats in San Sebastian, Montreal, Lisbon, and New Orleans.

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  • Trade Conductor

    On a Greek island a few years ago. No Wi-Fi at all! Impossible. I was running around like a crazy person to find Wi-Fi. It was impossible.

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  • Wordfence

    Worst was in the car at a rest stop off the I90 freeway. I had the laptop on the car roof to try and boost the cellphone signal while fixing a broken server.

    The best has been a family home in Colorado where I’ve come up with every major successful product idea I’ve had, usually while there on vacation. I think it’s something about the 6000ft altitude. Perhaps oxygen deprivation has a positive effect on the mind.

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