A Secret Weapon for Planning your Work and Life Travels

A Secret Weapon for Planning your Work and Life Travels

I just discovered something that will be a huge help the next time I take my family to live and work abroad. Something that will save me hours of planning our workation adventure.

A travel agent.

You’re probably thinking: “Travel agents still exist?” (That’s what I thought too!) But I’ve been learning more about what they have to offer and it’s pretty appealing. One agency I spoke with, Bursch Travel, has a flat-fee model: For about the cost of your car’s oil change, they can plan any part of your workation or vacation that you need.  (I have no affiliation or relationship with any of the agencies mentioned here, other than I think they are really nice people)

Here are a few tips I’m thinking about for our next workation:

Finding a place to live on a workation takes a lot of time: I figure out the neighborhood and then begin combing through the rentals on AirBnb and other sites.

But a travel agent has a database full of furnished apartments in cities around the world, and can simply send me the best ones to look at according to the location I want and the budget I have. Plus, if I arrive and find something terrible like rats in the bedroom, the agency can move me to a new place. I have always had great luck with AirBnb, but knowing an agency has my back would be a huge comfort.

Work space and nanny
A travel agent doesn’t just find you flight and lodging: They should be able to find you options for a coworking space and even a nanny service. Large agencies have contacts and networks everywhere to help plan anything you need during your travels. Again, that is a huge time saver!

Playgrounds, restaurants, transportation, etc.
A full-service agency will help you plan any part of the trip. So if you want a list of the nearest playgrounds in your neighborhood or recommendations for lunch near your coworking space, or you need help figuring out your flight there or transportation once you’re on the ground, they can set all of that up for you.

Someone to lean on when things go wrong
I’ve talked to several travel agents and agencies who say business is booming. People are overwhelmed with all of the travel information out there and aren’t sure who to trust. An agent is someone who can handle all of the details AND be the person to turn to when things go wrong. As Nicole Winter of Destination Vacation recalled, “My client was about to leave for her honeymoon in the Caribbean when a tropical storm hit. I rebooked her entire trip by the next day. She could not have done that on her own.”

I LOVE planning and researching my workations, but there are certain areas – like housing – that take up a lot of my time and are a source of worry about whether the owner will be fair or whether the place will live up to the website photos. Knowing that a professional has my back if things go wrong is really a game-changer for my future travels!

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