Sun, sea, and status reports: The reality of working remotely abroad

The coronavirus pandemic has changed many aspects of the way we live our lives. Perhaps most significantly, the way we work. At the end of March 2020, the Government advised that those who can work from home, should do so.

After the dust had settled somewhat, and you could buy flour from Tesco’s again, I began to feel well adjusted to the “new normal”. I missed the office, and seeing my colleagues, but the reality was that we were not going to be in the office all together for a while longer. I started to think about how I could work differently and break the monotony of working from my bedroom at home with my family! So, I decided to move to Sicily with my friend for two months, and work remotely from Palermo.

It’s almost time to come home now, but it’s been a fantastic experience. The consistently good weather, friendly people and fantastic food have been brilliant for my mental health. I hadn’t previously given much thought to Sicily, however, after detailed research, Palermo became an obvious choice. Crucially, despite being the epicentre of the European COVID-19 pandemic, Italy had managed to control the virus very effectively, averaging ~1,500 new cases per day, when I first moved here at the beginning of September. This meant that for a long time, they remained on the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s (FCO) “approved list”, allowing travellers from the UK to travel freely, without needing to self-isolate on arrival / return to the UK, or voiding their travel insurance. Italy has recently seen a sharp increase in COVID-19 cases, so, unfortunately, I will be required to self-isolate for two weeks upon my return to the UK.

The experience of working from my bedroom in Palermo has been pretty much the same as working from my bedroom in St. Albans. However, I am even more motivated to complete my actions on-time, so that I can go out and enjoy the location that I am in. It makes a world of difference to know that once I log-off for the day, I can wander down to the marina and indulge in some of the delicious food and drink Palermo has to offer. Ultimately, after spending the best part of 6 months in one location, one room, the change of scenery has helped keep me motivated during a monotonous year.

Aurora were extremely supportive from the moment I submitted my proposal to work abroad. They helped me find solutions to the legal / compliance questions, as well as navigating the minefield that is travelling during a pandemic. I feel extremely lucky to work for a company that not only see the value in “out of the box” suggestions such as these, but also support you in seeing them through.

There are endless other benefits to working for Aurora, beyond a fantastic flexible working offering. If you think that Aurora sounds like somewhere you would like to work, we’d love to hear from you! Drop us an email:

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