If you’re like most lawyers, you know that any vacation you take will necessarily include some amount of work.
If you’re lucky, you may only need to respond to a few emails, participate in a couple of calls, and look over one or two documents. Regardless of how much work you’ll need to get done, you’ll need travel locations and activities that are not only enjoyable, but will allow you to work while not annoying your travel companions or forcing you to miss out on too many activities.
Choose Your Destination Carefully
When choosing a travel destination, make sure—and then check a second time—that you will have reliable, continuous wifi access. You may only need to check email or work for a few days of a two-week vacation, but being able to be in contact with your colleagues and do what needs to be done at that time will be crucial. So if you plan to travel in luxury for part of your trip and camp outside for another part, make sure you schedule accordingly.
It will also be important for your travel companions to be able to take short excursions or otherwise have something to do besides waiting while you’re working. This is where a well-thought-out itinerary will come in. Use these itinerary websites and apps to help you:
TripIt.com—You can create detailed itineraries online and email them to your travel crew. The site then automatically adds relevant information such as maps and weather updates. The site is free but you can buy extra perks, like mobile alerts of cancellations.
TripCase.com—Send all your confirmations to TripCase and the site will arrange them in a helpful timeline. The itinerary can be shared, and restaurants and attractions can be easily added.
TripHobo.com—This site helps you plan your trip like this: You put in your starting and ending points along with the destinations along the way, and the site will recommend travel options and attractions in each location you list. You can also get ideas by viewing other people’s itineraries.
Of course, we have our own great ideas about where you and your family or friends can go to have fun while still allowing you the opportunity to get a little work done:
Foodie Tour of Europe
Who doesn’t want to eat their way through France, Spain, and Italy? You should have no problem with connectivity in these European countries, and your friends or family can easily find fun and interesting ways to kill a few hours while you take calls and deal with documents. A perk of traveling in Europe is the ability to easily go from region to region or from one country to another by train if you like. You can go from Barcelona, Spain to Lyons, France in about five hours, or from Bologna, Italy to Rome in just over two hours. If you choose that option, take the time to read a couple of juicy briefs and maybe even mark them up the old-fashioned way—by hand—during your train ride.
Paris, France. See the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre between gorging on croissants, baguettes, macarons, and crepes—and escargots if you’re feeling adventurous.
Lyon, France. See renaissance passageways called Traboules, and the Musée des Beaux-Arts de Lyon, the largest fine art museum after the Louvre. Then chow down at officially certified bouchons, which are traditional Lyonnaise restaurants. This area is known for its duck pâté, sausages, and roast pork.
Barcelona, Spain. Barcelona is known for beautiful beaches and beautiful buildings. Unique, breathtaking architecture, such as that of the Sagrada Família and the Casa Batlló, is everywhere. Barcelona’s food stalls in La Boquiera Market and tapas at the popular terraces, such as Placa Reial, are famous for their seafood and pork. Barcelona is also a great place to try dishes from other parts of the country, like gazpacho from Seville and paella from Valencia.
San Sebastian, Spain. Learn about Basque culture at the San Telmo Museum, and enjoy the Concha Bay, one of the best beaches in Europe. San Sebastian’s old town is full of pinxtos restaurants, where tapas are served on skewers or toothpicks. You can also take a Basque cooking class.
Bologna, Italy. Walk around the old city and visit the many basilicas. The center of Bologna’s food scene is the Quadrilatero, which is full of food stalls and markets. Have a few meals at osterias, small restaurants with short menus of local specialties.
Rome, Italy. Of course you’ll want to see the Colosseum, the Pantheon, and the Spanish Steps in between heavenly Roman meals of bruschetta and spaghetti carbonara. Find the best pizza restaurants away from tourist areas.
Spend as little or as much time in each country as you prefer—it’s your vacation, so enjoy it your way!
Ready to plan your next vacation? Try one of the planning apps, or simply put something together yourself. Give yourself enough lead time to wrap everything up at the office.