Has remote work changed the travel landscape? | AP News

  

Category:  News & Politics

Via:  perrie-halpern  •  2 months ago  •  6 comments

By:   AP NEWS

Has remote work changed the travel landscape? | AP News
While some workers return to the office this year, many others continue to work remotely indefinitely. This seismic shift has changed where people live and work and, increasingly, how they travel. In the first quarter of 2022, nearly 25% of job postings at the 50,000 largest companies in the U.S.

S E E D E D   C O N T E N T


While some workers return to the office this year, many others continue to work remotely indefinitely. This seismic shift has changed where people live and work and, increasingly, how they travel.

In the first quarter of 2022, nearly 25% of job postings at the 50,000 largest companies in the U.S. and Canada were for permanently remote positions, according to the job listing service Ladders. That's up from a mere 4% before the pandemic.

"It has enabled us to extend trips, leave early and work different hours," says Kirsten Reckman, a credit risk manager based in Tampa, Florida, who works remotely. "My boss is very accommodating as long as the work gets done."

Reckmen's experience reflects a larger trend. One in five travelers this summer plan to do work on the road, according to a report from Deloitte, an international professional services network. Of these so-called "laptop luggers," 4 in 5 plan to extend the length of their trips because of schedule flexibility.

THE RISE OF 'BLEISURE' TRAVEL

Remote work has blurred the line between business and personal travel. Rather than leaving home rarely for vacation, remote workers can travel at any time. This has the potential to upend longstanding travel trends.

"Many travelers who have the opportunity are choosing to combine remote working with trips for a change of scene as well as maximizing PTO," or paid time off, explains Mark Crossey, traveler expert at Skyscanner, a travel search engine and agency. "Workations allow people with flexible home and work lives to become 'half tourists' for a period of time."

This kind of freedom appeals to Lisa Wickstrom, a mortgage underwriter based in Arizona who now works from around the world with only a suitcase.

"I got three weeks of vacation before," says Wickstrom, "But I never feel like I have to take vacation time because … I'm always on vacation."

For the travel industry, these nomads offer enormous opportunities. Remote workers can spend far more time — and money — at far-flung destinations. Yet "bleisure" travelers don't fit the typical tourist mold.

"You can't just go freely everywhere," explains Derek Midkiff, a patent attorney who left San Diego during the pandemic and never looked back. "You're living somewhere but also working. Someone asks me, 'Did you do this and this,' and I have to say, 'No, I'm working, it's not the same as when you're on vacation.'"

TRAVEL DAYS ARE CHANGING

Before the pandemic, it was expensive to fly on the weekends and cheaper during the week. That could all be shifting with remote work.

According to data from Hopper, a travel booking app, the cost of domestic flights on Sundays and Mondays has risen 5.90% and 2.97%, respectively, in 2022 compared to 2019, while the cost of flying on Friday and Saturday has dropped by 3.04% and 1.60%. It's now cheaper to fly on a Saturday than a Monday, on average.

Further, remote workers can take longer trips during busy holidays, flattening the "peak" of peak travel dates.

"Since 2020, we've observed a small but noticeable shift toward Thursday departures for Memorial Day weekend itineraries," says Craig Ewer, spokesperson for Google Flights, "which suggests that location flexibility is indeed having an impact on traveler behaviors."

AN INDUSTRY ADAPTS

Many workers fled large cities during the pandemic, filling the suburbs and rural areas. But remote work has changed the calculus more drastically for some, freeing up budgets to allow more travel.

"I save over $2,000 a month after taxes by living in Florida," says Reckman. "We're traveling a lot more because of that."

Lower cost of living and tax incentives means more freedom for some remote workers. And some companies are seeing a potential windfall.

Airbnb, the vacation rental platform, reports that the number of long-term stays (over 28 days) doubled in the first quarter of 2022 compared to 2019. The company has even introduced an "I'm Flexible" search functionality for travelers who don't need to get back to an office on a specific date.

"I've found Airbnb to be cheaper, and have better rules," says Midkiff, explaining why he chooses vacation rentals over hotels. "And I like to stay a month to get the discount."

REMOTE WORK IS HERE

No longer constrained by vacation days and getting back from a trip by Monday, remote workers have shifted the travel landscape, maybe for good. While executives continue to hem and haw over return-to-office plans, remote workers are happily sending emails from afar.

"I think about the office politics, the baby showers, all that," says Wickstrom with a shudder. "I can't even imagine doing all that again."

This article was provided to The Associated Press by the personal finance website NerdWallet. Sam Kemmis is a writer at NerdWallet. Email: skemmis@nerdwallet.com.

All contents © copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.


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evilgenius
PhD Guide
1  evilgenius    2 months ago

Yes, my wife went full-time remote with several co-workers during covid and it looks to remain permanent. Recently one of her co-worker's spouse needed to travel for work so she took 2 travel days off and when along with her husband and worked from the hotel during the day. 

From day one I've set our office up for everyone to work remotely if necessary. They can get phone calls and access their data anywhere in the world as if they were sitting in their office. I, personally, don't work well from home. Too many distractions. Plus I work reception so I feel more comfortable in the office.

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Freshman Principal
2  Drinker of the Wry    2 months ago

I have teleworked since Apr 2020.  My office returned at 20% last Jan and 50% in March and 100% this month.  They remain very liberal with working from home  when that makes sense.  I've remained at home due to immune system issues.  This experience has greatly reduced our work travel as we've gotten good at meeting and collaboration with MS Teams and SharePoint sites.  

 
 
 
Split Personality
Professor Principal
3  Split Personality    2 months ago

Since my business transverses 4 time zones I began working my 9 hours and teleworking at night

to bag as many transactions as I could around 2008 from the east coast.

Eventually I moved to Texas where I teleworked from 6AM to 6PM which matched my brides work

schedule.  That wasn't good enough for my previous contractor so now I do it for myself when I want to.

I make more working 4 to 6 hours a day now.

My wife worked from home for her international law firm throughout Covid as we approached retirement.

No complaints, only praise for the cook and the commute and the clean bathrooms.

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Freshman Principal
3.1  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  Split Personality @3    2 months ago
No complaints, only praise for the cook and the commute and the clean bathrooms.

Here here, although I've found training new hires to be harder and slower.  Maybe if I didn't waste so much time here...

 
 
 
Split Personality
Professor Principal
3.1.1  Split Personality  replied to  Drinker of the Wry @3.1    2 months ago

LOL!

My wife did great, partly because new (younger) hires were so much more tech savy.

I had to maintain a certain amount of decorum ( pants and a nice shirt ) when she was training

her replacements using facetime, zoom, webex and actually sharing  docs etc. while

talking them through various tasks.  They still call but I think it's just to keep up with the "Suits"

like drama at the firm. 

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Freshman Principal
3.1.2  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  Split Personality @3.1.1    2 months ago
I had to maintain a certain amount of decorum ( pants and a nice shirt )

Sometimes I wear a dress shirt and pajama bottoms.

 
 

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