Interview: Coworking During Covid

Our coworking center has been open since mid-May and we’ve been fortunate enough to meet many digital nomads and provide them with a safe and accessible place to work from. One of our coworkers came to Valencia from the Netherlands and so we caught up with him about his experience so far and what it has ben like to be a coworker during Covid. More insights in our short interview…

 

What sector do you work in?

I am currently working in the education technology sector. I am working remotely right now for an Amsterdam-based software company. 

 

Where did you spend the lockdown? And how was the whole process of traveling to Valencia?

I was living in the Netherlands during the lockdown period. As a Dutch (EU) citizen I was able to move to Valencia without any issues a soon as the lockdown restrictions were lifted. I was able to find housing quite easily online via Idealista and this helped me to settle in straight away. I have been working remotely for 2 months now and it’s been great so far. 

 

On a personal level… has the pandemic affected you much?

Not as much as some other people I know. I think I am lucky in that my sector of work was not affected much, and besides wearing a mask and hand-sanitizing dozens of times a day, my daily life has not changed drastically. I do not feel particularly limited in terms of activities and I am enjoying my time in Valencia, even with the safety rules.

 

In terms of your work, was the lockdown an opportunity for your company or did it impact you negatively?

My company is used to digital collaboration and a lot of my colleagues actually work remotely anyway so it was not an enormous change for us. The education technology sector has boomed as a result of so many educational institutions moving to partially or fully online learning, so it has certainly been a busy period for us. We are fortunate that the pandemic has not affected our business in a negative way.

 

Now we are living in a ‘new normality’, do you feel safe in Valencia?  And do you think the alarm in the international press about Spain’s situation is justified?

I definitely feel safe here. I feel like the people in Valencia are very respectful of the regulations, especially with wearing masks and cleaning hands.

I think the alarm in other cities such as Madrid and Barcelona is justified because the cases per capita are so much higher. Although now Spain has introduced a curfew across the country which is a bummer. But it’s only between 12pm and 6am, so it could certainly be worse!

 

How did you hear about International Coworking Valencia?

Personally, I searched Google Maps to see which coworking spaces were walking distance from my apartment, and International Coworking Valencia was only about 15 minutes away. I saw some nice reviews online and so I decided to try it out for a month. It’s quiet and the people are friendly which is exactly what I was looking for. 

 

What do you like the most about Valencia? And about coworking in this city?

I love the weather, the food, the architecture, the language. It’s a great city!

The coworking space is nice because it gives me a place to quietly finish my work, and then at home I don’t have to think about work-related things. I don’t enjoy working from home; I much prefer to be surrounded by other people who are also working. So finding this coworking space close to my apartment and in the city center has been really useful. 

 

What do you think coworking centers should do in these Covid times and do you think International Coworking Valencia is doing a good job?

I think the measures being taken here (distanced seating, lots of hand sanitizer, temperature checks, regular cleaning etc.) are sufficient.

 

Is working in the city center an advantage for you?

For me it’s definitely an advantage. The location works out for me because it’s walking distance from my apartment and there are nice cafes and restaurants to eat at during lunch. It’s also nice to finish work and be in the lively center of the city with bars and things to do close by. 

 

Would you recommend us to other digital nomads?

If anyone is looking for an affordable space in the city with all your basic working needs met, a nice location and a good atmosphere, then I would certainly recommend it!

 

What would you say to other remote workers who are maybe hesitant to come to Spain right now?

I can only speak for Valencia and not for other cities with stricter measures, but the quality of life is currently fantastic here, and the cost of living is cheaper than where I lived before. If you are able to work remotely and at all interested in the Spanish language or culture, then I highly recommend you come give it a try. I haven’t regretted it one bit. 

 

 

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