How to Choose? Coworking Spaces vs Cafes vs WFH

coworking spaces

Guest Post By: Nisha Garigarn

It’s 2018, more than ever, people are on the go. Working from their laptops wherever there is an internet connection. Home is where the wifi connects automatically, as they say.

For remote workers living in cities, there are plenty of workspaces to choose from. That begs the question, where should you get work done? Well, it depends! How to choose…

Coworking Spaces vs Cafes vs Working from Home

I’ve been a digital nomad for the past few years and have spent my fair share of time remote working from home, cafes, and coworking spaces. Here’s the low down on my pros and cons of each option.

1) HOME:

coworking spaces vs cafes

Working from home is still an oldie but goodie in today’s option-ridden world. It’s also the easiest choice, since you can wake up and start doing work right from your bed in your PJs.

Many top performers have elaborate setups with multiple monitors and customized ergonomic chairs to create the ultimate working experience. Perhaps you’ve seen those Pinterest-perfect home office desks decorated with anything your heart desires. Working from home allows you to personalize your workspace however you want, as it is entirely your own space.

For those with kids at home or dogs to walk, it can be convenient to stay home and work rather than worry about commuting.

Home is comfortable, but perhaps it can be too comfortable. For instance, I sometimes will find myself waking up from a midday nap and don’t know how I got there. Or I’ll procrastinate by doing dishes and laundry instead of focusing on my work.

And you can decorate your home office all you want, but you won’t be able to recreate that energy of being around other people who are working on what they are passionate about.

Pros: comfortable, free

Cons: lots of distractions, lonely

2) CAFE:

coworking spaces vs cafes

Just a few years ago, it used to only be a few writers taking up cafe seats with lattes and laptops, plugging away at scripts. Nowadays, every seat is booked up with a laptop wielding professional. Designers, developers, copywriters, photographers, Facebook-browsers, you name it.

I am a fan of the bustling atmosphere and ease of access. I can go straight from the sidewalk into the cafe and get online quick.

To find a good cafe, you need to constantly be on the prowl. Similar to the hottest clubs, the best cafes will fill up just months after launching, so there is only a short period of time during which you can take advantage of the chill setting before the crowds set in. Once that happens, you’re more likely to show up and be disappointed with your productivity because coffee shops just weren’t created for people to work from their laptops for hours on end.

If you ever do find that elusive cafe with reliable wifi, good vibes, strong coffee, and plentiful seats… never tell a single soul.

Pros: cheap, lively atmosphere

Cons: loud, crowded, unreliable wifi, need to constantly buy coffees or croissants, difficult to find good ones


coworking spaces vs cafes

Coworking spaces have come to the rescue in a huge way. Every major city now has a wide array of spaces, ranging from chains like WeWork to the smaller, independently-owned nooks. There’s even coworking spaces just for women. Some of the best coworking spaces for women can be found here. There are even apps like Croissant which let you go to a bunch of different spaces with one membership.

For coworking spaces, reliable wifi and comfortable seating is a given. Usually there are also phone booths, printing, unlimited coffee, and networking events included in the membership. Some spaces take it much further with amenities— I’ve seen everything from rooftop open bar happy hours to 3D printing to kombucha on-tap.

Coworking spaces will keep you focused and give you opportunities to serendipitously meet other interesting people from different industries. The ability to connect with other hardworking, driven people doing things their are passionate about is exciting.

However, that comes at a price. Depending on the coworking space’s location and amenities, it can be quite an expense each month.

Pros: luxurious, focused, friendly

Cons: they aren’t free

Luckily, as a remote worker, you don’t have to choose just one workspace. You can work from a coworking space one day, and a cafe to switch it up. Workspace freedom is one of the biggest perks of being a remote worker and you can enjoy being inspired by different surroundings depending on your mood. Happy roaming!

Nisha is the Co-founder of Croissant, a coworking app that unlocks multiple coworking space in cities around the world.