With Americans logging more than 463 million business trips each year, the increasing ubiquity and quality of coworking spaces in major metropolitan areas are coming at the right time for savvy, on-the-go professionals. Business travel is only expected to pick up in the coming years, and that could mean additional revenue for the right coworking spaces.
However, business travelers looking for temporary, professional workspaces may not share the needs of more traditional coworkers - such as the start-up entrepreneur, the previously at-home freelancer who lives nearby, or the small-business owner who needs a conference room twice a month when a client comes to town. In fact, business travelers tend to have distinct requirements when it comes to coworking spaces.
Below, we discuss some of the most salient characteristics of the business traveler who uses coworking spaces while on trips.
Someone in from out of town on business for a few days isn't looking to sign up for a long-term membership with a local coworking space. Instead, they're looking for a desk or office for one, two, or maybe three days. Flexibility, rather than rigidity on price and specs, will get them in that ergonomic chair and on a coworking space's Wi-Fi. Favorable terms might include day passes and even hourly rates, if the traveler is in town for a particularly short time, or only needs the workspace for a little while.
Some might wonder why, if a few hours is all a traveler needs, they don't just set up at their hotel-room desk. The answer is for the same reasons the at-home remote worker or freelancer seeks out awesome coworking space: the environment, the amenities, the lightning-speed Wi-Fi (and dedicated tech team that ensures it doesn't glitch), and the workspace options. Someone who needs two solid hours in a totally private space where they can make phone calls, for example, could rent a closed office with a single desk and a private phone line and then be on their way.
For those visiting the Washington DC metro area, Metro Offices has nine locations with office, desk, meeting room and virtual office solutions.
It's not just high prices and long contract terms that can deter business people from using coworking spots when they're traveling. "The actual booking process for a day of coworking is currently a fragmented and inconsistent experience," reads a piece on coworkinginsights.com. "Reservations and check-in for coworking spaces today are similar to hotels 20 years ago. Online booking options are few and far between, and most people simply wouldn’t drop into a coworking space with hopes to purchase a pass for just one day. Even for a one-day pass, a customer is often required to fill out paperwork, listen to a membership sales pitch, and sometimes even put down a cash deposit."
Coworking spaces, like Metro Offices, that can significantly streamline, quicken, and ease the check-in process for one-time users and the like will have the edge when it comes to business travelers.
This one's not hard to guess given that the business traveler group is made up of out-of-towners, but travelers who use coworking spaces want these spots to be near the business or event they are in town to visit, or within convenient distance to an airport (bonus points if the airport is international). At Metro Offices, our Herndon location is just off the Dulles toll road, mere minutes away by Uber or Lyft from Dulles International Airport. With so many of our locations within quick walking distance of Metro, Reagan National Airport, with its own stop on the Red Line, couldn't be more convenient for coworking professionals with flights to catch.
Coming to DC and in need of convenient, flexible, amenity-filled coworking space? Metro Offices has nine locations in and around the nation's capital. Browse them here.
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