At some stage or another, we’ve all sat in the office while daydreaming about visiting some remote destination. Sadly, however, for most of us the realities and time constraints related to modern life seldom afford us this chance, unless we can somehow merge traveling with our professional life. The good news is, with the rapid growth in global connectivity, more and more modern occupations are migrating towards the online sphere. This means that for many professionals, like myself, working remotely has become a viable option, if your employer allows this, of course.
Fortunately for me, one of the many perks of being a Voys colleague is having this very freedom. So, for a two-month period, I’ve set sail to work remotely from the breath-taking Mahé Island, Seychelles. But, is working from this tropical paradise all sunshine and coconuts? Well, the short answer is, yes, but it doesn’t come without a couple of annoying mosquito bites along the way. For those of you who have the ambition to one day attempt this adventure, here are 6 quick tips to help make your journey smooth sailing.
1. Check your internet speed
Broadband is the captain of your ship. In Seychelles, don’t ever assume that your accommodation will provide sufficient internet connectivity. Before you book, ask your host to perform a broadband speed test (e.g. http://speedtest.mybroadband.co.za) and send you the results.
2. Have a backup connection ready
I highly recommend getting 4G access as a backup internet source. Even with a good internet line, broadband speeds can fluctuate quite drastically during the day. To avoid frustration, have a 4G source ready as secondary option. It’s easy to purchase a sim card in Seychelles, but remember to take your passport when doing so. I would suggest using Cable & Wireless as your service provider, as they seem to have better coverage, especially in the more rural south of Mahé. Topping up your data is possible at almost every shop on the island.
3. Have backup power ready
Pack a power bank as backup power supply. During my stay in the south, I experienced a couple of extended power cuts. Although this is said to be a temporary phenomenon due to maintenance, it’s better to err on the side of caution here. This could save you the hassle and frustration of driving to a different area in search of power, which unfortunately happened to me.
4. Get a small fan
Unless you plan on sitting in an air-conditioned room all day, get a small fan to use while sitting outside. This will help keep your computer cool and flying insects at bay. The tropical climate is great while on holiday, but it can become a tad distracting while trying to keep focus and stay productive.
5. Pack a travel plug convertor
This one should be a no-brainer, but it’s an easy one to forget. Not all hosts provide plug convertors, so be sure to pack one, as they can be harder to find than you might think. The Seychelles uses a type G plug, similar to the example below.
6. Rent a Car
Although you can access most places via the bus in Seychelles, waiting times can really swallow up your valuable work time. Taxies are also available, but they are much costlier and less convenient than renting a car. Be advised that traffic jams in the north can be very bad during peak times (mornings and afternoons on weekdays), so try plan trips to Victoria (the capital) accordingly.