What do you need to work from a dream destination?

By Mike Ianiri, Equinox

If you are running your own business and you aren’t tied to a particular location, have you ever dreamed of moving far away?  Perhaps to an idyllic sun kissed beach or another favourite, picturesque spot?  Somewhere you can avoid the demands and multitasking and find a relaxed space to achieve your work goals and have time for other pursuits?  Does that sound good? If you family is young or you’re becoming an empty-nester, or you can simply decide that now is the time to live your dream what will you need to make the move?

Phone set up

Running a business means talking to a lot of people: clients, suppliers, staff, and prospects and others. Depending on where most of your customers are, you need to think carefully about how you set up your phones. Your mobile is not your best option, even if it is one of the easiest devices to put into your beach bag. If you decide on the Bahamas because of the broadband speeds, mobile calls back to the UK could cost over £2 a minute. Of course, keeping in touch with family and friends will also be crucial to enjoying the experience.   

A VoIP-based solution with a softphone on your laptop and/or your smartphone handset may be the best solution. SIP trunk connections to other countries where you do a lot of business will mean you’re only ever making local calls, rather than calling at international rates. You can even keep a UK landline number – so clients never need to know you’re on the beach rather than at your desk in the UK. 

Laptops and powerbanks

You’ll probably want a light laptop (something like the Microsoft Surface Pro or Apple Macbook Air), or a sturdy one ( perhaps from the Dell Rugged Extreme range) depending on your destination.   Not cheap but an essential tool.

Do your research so you can feel confident that as you start remote working, accessing the Cloud a lot etc you have kit that is reliable and can cope with the workload.   If you’ll have several programs running at the same time choose something with a decent amount of RAM. Also, if you think you’re likely to have to work offline a lot, then a good-sized hard drive, or one that connects to an extra external hard drive is important. 

Assuming there isn’t a plug socket anywhere close, you’ll need a powerbank. Here’s a few to choose from. To help you choose the right one, consider the following questions:

  • How many devices do you want to be able to charge from the powerbank? Charging your phone once or twice will be possible from most, but if you’re looking to keep your laptop charged as well, you’ll need a larger capacity device.
  • What devices are you charging? Powerbanks come with a variety of outlet sockets, but they’re not all the same.
  • How strong are you? Some of the high capacity powerbanks weigh 1kg or more. 
  • Are you flying? Many airlines ban the really high capacity powerbanks, so err on the side of caution if you are a frequent flyer. 

Security measures

Working in remote locations, particularly if it is only for a short period of time, can increase security concerns. Devices being stolen can mean a major data security nightmare. Data breaches on devices that contain Personally Identifiable Information (PII) for EU citizens need to be reported to the information Commissioners Office (ICO) within 72 hours. You also have to tell the people affected! 

Far better to secure your devices and be able to remotely wipe them, if necessary. Talk to your IT support company about Mobile Device Management (MDM), biometrics or two-factor authentication (2FA) before you go.


Moving your UK business to a beach means you’ll need to connect to the internet. If your house is on the edge of the beach and the WiFi reaches the beach, then great. If not, you’ll need a 4G connection and be able to tether via your phone.

If you’re off to the Caribbean, you will have to be prepared to work with fairly slow speeds. The Bahamas seems to have the fastest broadband speeds in the area, at about 9.95Mbps. If you’re happy with the Florida coastline instead, you can get much faster speeds, at 46.6Mbps. This compares with the fastest connections in the world, in Singapore at over 60 Mbps. If you want to use 4G, here’s where you can choose your preferred beach. 

If you are travelling for a short period, check the price of buying data locally. Sometimes it is cheaper, to buy your data, in the UK and sometimes it’s cheaper locally.  If your mobile contract comes with a lot of data, check their roaming policies. Outside of the EU, most UK operators charge £5 per day to use your contract data.  That may be sufficient.

Don’t forget you will be backing up your data online, as well as accessing your apps and email. Ensure you take that into consideration when looking at how much data you need.

Always remember to be very careful about using local WiFi. It is a common practice for hackers to spoof WiFi connections in order to get access to your data.

Help with productivity

Remote working is nothing new and there are plenty of ways to communicate with a geographically diverse team. The range of tools to help you continues to grow.

Instant messaging tools, such as Slack, Hipchat or Google’s Hangout Chat are all free, or have free versions.  Slack is probably the one you’ve heard of and probably used at some point.

Video-conferencing could be an alternative to using a phone, but the quality of your internet connection may determine whether this is something you use all the time, or just occasionally. Skype is probably the biggest name in this market, but there are plenty of others, such as Google’s Hangout and Zoom.

Project management is a key requirement for remote teams. Thankfully there are a range of different tools available to you. Basecamp is one to consider if your projects aren’t particularly complex. Or look at Trello that also allows you to manage a number of different projects using a ‘boards’ system.  If you need something that combines chat, meetings, collaborative working, file sharing and project management in one place, something like Microsoft Teams is worth considering.

Foundation of trust

I’m mention trust last as it should be a given.  If you’re going to run your business from a beach, you need to be able to trust your team back in the office, wherever that may be.  If you don’t, you’ll have much less beach-time than you want. Most of the apps listed above will track when, and sometimes where, entries are made, so you can always see if your team are working if you need to. 

Technology is making it easier and easier to work from where you want to work.  If you feel like making a lifestyle change technology will help you.  Perhaps you need to start having the conversations with your family, staff, and friends so you can make the move.  Fulfil your dream of working in a beautiful, relaxing place. Just don’t be surprised if you start getting plenty of visitors!


Mike Ianiri is Director of independent telecoms brokerage Equinox. Mike works with companies, charities and other organisations to help them choose the right telecoms packages for their needs and thereby reduce their costs. He is particularly knowledgeable on the integration of IT and telecoms in business.  www.equinoxcomms.co.uk 

Twitter: @CommsEquinox

Share this...
0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *