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The best cities around the world to take a working vacation

Americans don’t need a passport to come to the world’s #1 city for a working vacation.

Kansas City, Missouri, was named the best city in the world to work during the day and explore after work without having to spend too much of your PTO time, according to a recent Icelandair analysis.

Known for its BBQ and jazz scene and for having more fountains than Rome, Kansas City is home to attractions like the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kauffman Stadium, Worlds of Fun and a bustling downtown area. It ranks 115 global cities, chosen for their prominence in the tourism industry and the availability of “slow” travel options.

Aside from tourist attractions, the Icelandair ranking takes into account metrics that paint a picture of each city’s quality of life (like cost of living, security, access to healthcare), how easy it is to work there (internet speed, average working hours, commute time). ), environmental factors (climate index, noise and light pollution, air quality) and data from the United Nations World Happiness Report.

Here are Icelandair’s top 10 best global cities for a working holiday.

  1. Kansas City, United States
  2. Vienna, Austria
  3. Wellington, New Zealand
  4. Copenhagen, Denmark
  5. Edinburgh, United Kingdom
  6. Victoria, Canada
  7. Perth, Australia
  8. Frankfurt, Germany
  9. Brisbane, Australia
  10. Helsinki, Finland

Travelers may be surprised that typical big cities like New York or Los Angeles don’t top the list. That’s because these subways “are not always best for when you want to take a step away from the busy hustle and bustle of a normal workday,” says Gisli S. Brynjolfsson, Icelandair’s director of global marketing.

“Slow travel” is a growing trend that “emphasizes connections, whether it’s with local people, businesses, culture, food, and leaving places in a state for future travelers to explore,” he tells CNBC Make it

Slow Travel is particularly attractive for people who are planning a working holiday, are more likely to travel alone and spend a longer time at the destination. “It’s about being mindful, not burning out, and taking the time to get to know the places around you,” says Brynjolfsson.

While remote work makes it easier than ever to take a work vacation, many people come out of those “breaks” more burned out than they left it. About 61% of Americans who took a work vacation in the last year didn’t consider it a “real” vacation, according to Expedia’s latest Vacation Deprivation study of 14,500 working adults in 16 countries. Additionally, 72% of people who worked while on vacation said they felt more burned out than ever.

The Icelandair report recommends travelers find balance on vacation by connecting with nature, staying active and practicing mindfulness. Take short breaks from devices on work days and find a responsible buddy who can help you prioritize your rest, whether it’s a colleague elsewhere or a travel buddy.

Finally, even if these cities have the infrastructure for working remotely, make sure you spend part of your trip logged off — deleting emails, practicing proactive recovery, and immersing yourself in your new destination.


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