It’s been nearly a year since the coronavirus pandemic prompted millions of Americans to start working from home, and Airstream wants to turn these remote workers into digital nomads.
The luxury travel trailer manufacturer, owned by Indiana-based RV giant Thor Industries, is introducing a 30-foot travel trailer with built-in office space. The work-friendly model, a variant of its mid-range Flying Cloud line, caters to the needs of digital nomads and students enrolled in distance-learning programs.
“The pandemic has permanently changed the traditional work landscape,” said Airstream CEO Bob Wheeler in a statement. “This new offering reflects our commitment to be nimble and react to the needs of current and future customers.”
The floorplan of the 2021 Airstream Flying Cloud 30FB squeezes a small office space into the rear of the trailer. The area features an extendable desk, power sockets, USB and HDMI ports and an office chair that tucks neatly beneath the work surface when not in use.
The workstation also has blackout curtains on the windows and a privacy divider, making it easy to block out distractions and look professional during Zoom calls.
4G internet service is available via Airstream Connected, provided by AT&T, and the trailer can be fitted with an optional roof-mounted antenna that boosts Wi-Fi signals from campgrounds and other mobile hotspots. However, heavy internet users and 5G enthusiasts might prefer to use their own service.
The 6,800-pound trailer will retail for $107,500, but there may soon be other options on the market.
The Nissan NV350 Office Pod features a large built-in desk and chair that can slide out of the vehicle’s back doors, letting digital nomads enjoy nature from their desk. It also offers a spacious interior lounge area and a roof-top recliner with an umbrella.
For now, the vehicle is just a cool concept, but 2021 would be a great year for Nissan to put it on the market.
The Recreational Vehicle Industry Association reported that Americans bought 430,000 new motorhomes and travel trailers in 2020, an increase of 6% over the previous year. The organization predicted that sales will exceed over 500,000 in 2021, spurred by the ongoing pandemic and growing interest from younger demographic groups.
According to a November study by RVIA, 29% of Americans performed remote work from an RV at some point in 2020 and 42% plan to do the same in 2021.
Meanwhile, a report by Upwork said that 41.8% of Americans were working from home at the end of 2020. The report also predicted that at least 26.7% of U.S. employees will be working from home throughout 2021 and 22% will be working remotely by 2025, which is an increase of 87% over pre-pandemic numbers.
Finally, a study by Nintex found that 70% of remote workers are more productive at home than they are at the office. It also found that 55% of remote workers think their lives would improve if they could work from home on a permanent basis.