Why Long 3 Day Weekends SUCK. Still Love Bank Holidays, and Public Holidays?

Long weekends are a trap. Public holidays or bank holidays as they call it in the UK and Australia isn't something you should be looking forward to. I know as I used to base my life, travel and sanity around the next three day weekend. It was the only time I could travel, take a vacation, or even visit family. The problem is two fold, first, we don't get them often enough and they're not long enough when you do get them. But even harsher, since everyone else is traveling during these dates as well, they're stressful and expensive. Airfare and hotel rates skyrocket, and if you dare to drive, be prepared to be stuck in traffic for hours on end. It's crazy to think that for most vacations, we often come back more stressed and exhausted than when we left for them in the first place. Normal weekends aren't much better for truly resting, how often do you spend your Saturday trying to run errands or hungover then Sunday dreading that you have to go back to work the next day.

I propose that every weekend should be a long weekend, everyone should be able to work from home most of the week, and that we should spread out travel. It'll eliminate traffic, drive down travel costs, and most importantly, give us more energy and sanity to actually be productive. The great news is that most digital nomads, location independent entrepreneurs and remote workers already know this and take advantage of the cheaper flights, and avoid traffic by doing so. But knowing that 99% of the world still doesn't, I was forced to schedule the upcoming Nomad Summit in Las Vegas over Labor Day weekend, even though I knew that the days before or after would have cheaper flights, lower cost hotel rooms, and less traffic for those who are driving. However, there is good news, in this blog post I'm going to share with you how to travel hack your budget not only to the conference but throughout the year where ever you go, how to save money on Airbnb's and hotel rooms, as well as how to make every weekend a long weekend, why you deserve one, and how to make it happen.

Flight and Travel Costs 

Aside from the stress and traffic surrounding 3 day weekends when everyone is on the road or at the airport, things just cost more during the holiday. Often, it's really just one of the days that is extremely expensive and overpriced. But the reason for that is a lot of people don't have that much time off of work, which means, that's the only day they can fly. The basics of supply and demand means that the more people that want to fly on a certain date, lets say, the days directly before Christmas and return the days after, means that prices will be double, triple or sometimes even 4x as much as just a day or two before or after. That also means that traffic if you choose to drive or rent a car will also be higher during those days.

Using the Nomad Summit dates as an example, we chose to have it in Las Vegas over Labor Day weekend because we know that's the only time a lot of people would be able to get off of work. There are still a ton of people who want to become location independent that still have normal 9-5 jobs that can't come in the middle of the week and we wanted to respect that and give them an opportunity to come without needing to ask their bosses for time off. But for those who can work remotely or are already location independent, the easy travel hack would be to come a few days early and hang out, sight see, or simply just work from Vegas, then say an extra day or two after to avoid the rush of people getting back to work. Using San Francisco to Vegas for example which is normally a 9 hour drive without traffic or a 1 hour and 35 minute flight, if you left on Wed August 29th and came back on September 5th, you'd completely skip the traffic if you drove, and you'd save a ton of money if you flew. The cost of your round trip ticket would go down from $280 down to just less than half at only $118.

My favorite flight hacks are to use the calendar view as well as use sites like Kayak or AZ Air when looking for flights. Just be warned that a lot of Low Cost Airline Carriers in the US like Southwest, JetBlue, or Spirit air don't allow flight comparison sites to search their data which means, you'll have to it manually by going to each site like I did below. Also a lot of these cheap airlines fly out of smaller airports, so make sure you check close by airports as well as the main one.

Flight Tip: Always check +3/-3 Days Before and After

Hotel and Airbnb Costs

The other crazy price difference is with hotel rooms on peak holidays. Again using the upcoming Nomad Summit in Las Vegas as an example, rooms at our host hotel, the Downtown Grand are up to $169 a night on the main 3-day weekend. However, on the days before and after the event, rooms are as low as $37 a night which is a steal! Yeah sure you'll still have to pay taxes and resort fees which can add up a bit, but the base price is almost 1/5th of the cost of the weekend price! A great travel hack is to fly or drive into Vegas early to skip the traffic and save some money, and stay for a few days before and after. You can cowork by the pool with the Nomad Summit team who will be there from the 28th or take advantage of one of the free day passes at the coworking space at Co-Operate and meet some Downtown Las Vegas locals. Also stay until the 4th or the 5th so you can fully enjoy the pool party and networking day on Monday after the event, go out, party, and sleep in before heading out.

Some people might even decide to book an Airbnb for a week or even a month and home base in Las Vegas for a while. One of the best travel hacks is moving slowly and exploring each city for a month at a time. When you book an Airbnb for 28 days or more, you get a monthly discount which is often up to 48% off the nightly price. Booking a place for 7 nights or more give you a weekly discount which is usually up to 20% off. An even bigger travel hack is to Airbnb out your place as a host while you're traveling to basically get your new accomidation for free, or sometimes even make money if the new location is cheaper than where you live! A lot of people don't realize but if you live in an expensive city, you can sublet your apartment or list it on Airbnb and actually make money while traveling. I actually have a friend who rents out multiple apartments under his name just to do arbitrage and profit off of the difference between how much his monthly rent is and how much he makes on Airbnb. If you're curious, listen to the internet on Episode 136 of the Travel Like a Boss podcast here.

Airbnb Tip: 28 nights or more get a huge monthly discount

How to Work from Home

Aside quitting your job and becoming a location independent entrepreneur, the easier first step would be to simply negotiate with your current employer to let you work from home once or twice a week. That way you still go into the office to have face time with your boss and coworkers, and be able to attend in person meetings and events, but you'll also be giving yourself a bit of freedom to work remotely when you need it. Most of us use Slack, email or some other online tool to communicate with coworkers and team members instead of walking up to them physically anyways, so it isn't as big of a shift as someone might think. A lot of companies like Buffer already use remote teams, and i've even overheard customer support chats for someone working for Shopify while I was at a coworking space in Koh Lanta, Thailand of all places!

Just listen to episode 121 where I interviewed someone I met in Lisbon, Portugal who works remotely while traveling the world. To be completely honest, as an employer myself who runs a remote team, I enjoy working with people in person, but as long as someone is doing their job I don't care where in the world they are. If we can organize a huge conference in Las Vegas while our team is scattered across Budapest, Ukraine, and Spain while most of our customers will be flying in from somewhere in North America, there's no reason why you can't convince your boss to let you save the 1 hour commute time every Monday and work from your local coworking space, or coffee shop instead. The real truth is, there are plenty of employees who are physically present but aren't very productive, while other employees who can crush it from wherever they are in the world. Just look at our Nomad Summit team Slack chat below as an example of how easy it is to organize and work remotely. As an employer if someone told me they wanted to work remotely, if they weren't very good anyways I'd use it as an excuse to fire them, but if they were awesome I'd do anything to keep them around, even if it meant letting you work from home, or travel to another country! Companies care about ROI, return on investment. If you are making your company more money than you are costing them, they'll want to keep you forever. If anything, having you work from home or remotely ultimately saves them money as well!

Our internal Nomad Summit Team Slack Chat!

Long Weekend Wrap Up

Unless you absolutely love your job and going into work everyday, your goal should be to become location independent and not have to wait until the next 3 day weekend. Ultimately it's better for your health, overall happiness, wallet, and even your productivity. If you want to know more about the location independent movement and learn how to work online, live anywhere in the world, and how doing so can actually save you money while giving you the freedom to travel, then come to the next Nomad Summit event! We'll be having experts talk about having money on taxes as an expat, the best places to relocate to, costs of living, money saving hacks, as well as how to start or scale up your location independent business. It's a conference designed to introduce you to other digital nomads who are already location independent, as well as leave you with new friends who are on the same journey as you.

If you've read the 4-hour workweek by Tim Ferris but haven't yet taken action, this is your opportunity and your chance to do it. If you haven't read the book yet, I'd order it today and I promise you'll be inspired to do it by the end. In the meantime, watch my video below on more reasons why long weekends whether it be Independence Day, Columbus Day, Memorial Day, Labor Day, Veterans Day, or even Thanksgiving weekend aren't something you should have to look forward to. You should be able to work when and where you want, 365 days a year and not have to wait until the 3 day weekend to gain back some sanity.

I hope this video helps. Let me know your thoughts below. Also I hope to see some of you at the next Nomad Summit in Las Vegas and then again in Chiang Mai, Thailand!

Warm Regards,

Johnny FD

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  1. I agree with you that 3-day weekends aren't long enough to really do much in a relaxing way. When I was still working a job, I often volunteered to work holiday weekends. I usually went into double time, so that was a nice boost for the paycheck. Because I worked the weekend, I could usually take a day off during the week if I wanted to and do something when everyone else was back at work. Not everyone has that flexibility but it's a nice hack if you can do it.

    1. That's actually a super smart hack. I'd be willing to bet that most bosses, especially for retail businesses where they need people to work 3 day weekends would be willing to give not only 1.5X or 2X pay but also give you a day or two off some other time. Smart was to make more money and avoid the crowds!

  2. I see the proposal every weekend should be a long weekend, everyone will be able to work at home most of the week, I find this proposal very cool
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  3. Love this! Although MY students may not think those shoes are out of the ordinary

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