As the trend of remote working continues to rise, American travelers are increasingly looking for destinations that offer not just a change of scenery, but also a high quality of life.
In response to this growing demand, Icelandair, Iceland’s flagship airline, has recently updated its annual study to identify the top 10 European cities ideal for wellness-oriented workcations in 2024
The index ranks cities based on seven factors including quality of life, Internet speed, pollution, climate, cost of living, healthcare, and safety, aiming to guide these professionals in choosing their ideal work and wellness destinations.
From the historic architecture of Vienna to the tranquil lakes of Zurich, these cities are among the top 10 locations in Europe for a remote working vacation in 2024:
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Vienna tops the list, known for its rich history, beautiful architecture, and vibrant culture, offering a unique blend of work and wellness opportunities. Its moderate cost of living coupled with top-notch healthcare makes it an ideal destination for those seeking a balance between productivity and well-being.
Copenhagen and Amsterdam rank second and third respectively. Both cities are celebrated for their high standard of living and safe environments. Copenhagen is particularly noted for having the fastest internet speed, making it a top choice for remote workers. Amsterdam, on the other hand, stands out with thesecond most favorable climate, offering an inviting and comfortable environment for both living and working remotely.
Luxembourg, despite its small size, ranks fourth, offering a safe environment, excellent healthcare, and a high-speed internet.
Helsinki ranks fifth and is renowned for its beautiful landscapes and high standard of living. With the lowest pollution levels, it stands as the cleanest city in the ranking, offering a rejuvenating environment for both work and relaxation
Valencia and Madrid, both in Spain, are great for remote work due to their climate, internet infrastructure, and high healthcare index. Valencia is affordable and ranks sixth, while Madrid, ranking ninth, offers a seamless work-from-home environment. Both cities are ideal for a wellness-oriented lifestyle.
Reykjavik, the capital of Iceland, ranks seventh. Despite a higher cost of living, it offers a unique blend of natural beauty and urban amenities. With a high-speed internet infrastructure and low pollution levels, Reykjavik provides a clean, healthy, and connected environment for a refreshing spot for a wellness workcation.
Oslo and Zurich, both renowned for their high living standards, excellent climates, and fast internet speeds, hold the eighth and tenth positions respectively. These cities are top choices for those seeking a blend of work and leisure in a high-quality environment.
Expert tips for a healthy and productive remote workcation:
- Connect with Nature: Regular mindful walks in green and blue spaces can enhance mental health and wellbeing.
- Take Mini-Breaks: Schedule buffers between Zoom calls and emails for stretching, nourishment, hydration, and fresh air.
- Buddy System: Have a wellness check-in partner to keep each other accountable for health and wellbeing.
- Get Moving: Regular physical activity, whether it’s running, swimming, cycling, walking, or yoga, can greatly improve your mood.
- Treat Yourself: If available, massages can reduce stress levels and muscle tension. Elevate the experience with essential oils.
- Practise Mindfulness: Becoming aware, without judgment, of the present moment can improve the immune system, sleep patterns, and focus.
These tips, gathered from a range of wellness experts, are designed to help professionals maintain wellness while embracing the flexibility of remote workcations.
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Notes to the Editors
Methodology: To reveal the best cities for a wellness workcation, we collated a list of 108 global cities and ranked them based on 7 different factors:
|Quality of life index (higher is better)
|An estimation of overall quality of life by using an empirical formula which takes into account eight different statistics such as the purchasing power index.
|Safety Index(lower is better)
|An estimation of the overall level of crime in a given city or a country. Crime levels lower than 20 are very low and crime levels higher than 80 are very high.
|Cost of living (lower is better)
|A relative indicator of consumer goods prices, including groceries, restaurants, transportation and utilities. Cost of Living Index does not include accommodation expenses such as rent or mortgage.
|Health Care Index(higher is better)
|An estimation of the overall quality of the healthcare system, health care professionals, equipment, staff, doctors, cost, etc.
|Internet Speed(higher the better)
|Internet speed by city data is current as of March, 2023. Cities are ranked by median download speeds, at the time of testing.
|Climate Index(higher the better)
|The Climate Index, ranging from -100 to +100, estimates a location’s overall climate attractiveness. While a score of 100 represents moderate temperatures and low humidity favoured by many, individual preferences for colder, warmer, or more humid climates may vary, so the index serves as a general guideline rather than an absolute measure.
|Pollution Index(lower is better)
|The survey gathers input from individuals who have resided in, or visited the city within the past three years. The resulting value, ranging from 0 to 100, represents their perception of a particular factor. A score of 0 indicates a very low perception, while a score of 100 signifies a very high perception.
-  https://www.forbes.com/advisor/business/remote-work-statistics/#sources_section