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Recording While You Travel: Seven Tips
For Wherever Your Vacation Takes You

July 13, 2015

By Susan Berkley
Voice Actor & Coach

Where is everybody? Driving around the New York City area where I live, I've been enjoying a break from the usually heavy traffic.

Work-at-home solopreneurs are usually nervous about taking vacations. What if a client needs something while they're away?

But we voice talent don't have to worry. If you choose, you can easily tuck your laptop and a USB mic into your carry-on and, as long as there's Internet, you can continue to audition and serve your clients from practically anywhere in the world.

RECORDING FROM FAR AWAY


You'll be surprised how many far away places are wired.

Los Angeles-based voice talent Justin Hibbard, for example, loves to travel. He's much in-demand and serves a large client roster. While on vacation on the Indonesian Island of Borneo where he went to see the pygmy elephants, he was able to record from a jungle hut! Even though they didn't have much, he was still able to get online.

I spend about two months a year in Brazil, and while I'm there, I never miss a beat. Some of the time I'm in a tiny town in coffee plantation country where the streets are paved with cobblestones and milk is delivered by horse drawn carriage.

But they have Internet service so I can set up my laptop and portable mic and get the job done.

TIPS FOR YOUR TRIPS

Here are my tips for making sure your voice over vacation time goes smoothly. T

1. Test your equipment before you go

Set up your portable recording gear exactly as you plan to use it on the road. Send a few test files to yourself and a friend and check the recording quality. How does it sound? Any hum or other noises?

2. Check the Internet access
Call ahead to your hotel or go online to check Internet availability in the place you're planning to visit. You'll often be able to find an Internet café in town or service at a local library.

3. Carry your equipment on board with you

I'll often pull my mic out of the bag with my laptop so it can be visualized and X-rayed without having to pull apart my bag. Make sure your microphone is well padded in foam or in a hard shell carry case.

4. Consider bringing an AirCard for reliable Internet access

Virgin Mobile offers an AirCard for only $40 a month with no contract, which means you only pay for the months you travel. Check the Internet for their service map.

5. Be mindful of security
Lock your equipment in the hotel safe if you can. Never leave your laptop unattended, even for a minute. Consider investing in a laptop lock and carry your gear in something that doesn't look like a computer bag.

6. Back everything up carefully before you go

... and leave the backup at home.

7. Ask for a room away from an elevator or noisy pool

Sound isolation on the road can be a little tricky, but you can often get an acceptable result if you set yourself up in a closet or corner away the window. Deaden the area with pillows, quilts and blankets, making sure to put a pillow or a cushion behind the mic. A car with the windows rolled up is also a great place to record.

Enjoy your voice over vacation, no matter what time of year you travel!
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ABOUT SUSAN
Susan Berkley is a top voice over artist and founder of The Great Voice Company, a voice over training company based near New York City. She is the telephone voice of AT&T and Citi, author of Speak To Influence: How To Unlock The Hidden Power of Your Voice, and a persuasive speaking expert. A frequent media guest, she has been featured on ABC news, CNBC and in the New York Times.Through her Bootcamps, coaching programs and courses, she shares how to experience and enjoy the freedom and flexibility of the voice over lifestyle and create a home-based business.

Web: www.greatvoice.com

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Comments (1)
Elizabeth Holmes
7/13/2015 at 12:17 PM
SUPER helpful checklist Susan -- thank you! (I'm printing this out and putting it in my luggage.) I didn't know about Virgin Mobile's AirCard. What a bonus!
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