I’ve been on the hunt for a communal, productive place to work for some time.
It’s been somewhat challenging for a couple of reasons.
- Up until recently, I was still balancing photography with a 9-5, so a very full-priced monthly membership for a space I’d use a few times per month wasn’t worth it.
- Even if I would work at a coworking space all the time, I crave flexibility and the freedom to make spontaneous decisions. I wasn’t sure I’d want to be tied to just one location. This is also why I’ve stuck with cafés thus far – I can pick any café and just grab a coffee.
I’ve been trying out different Flexday locations over the past few months (@goflexday). Basically, Flexday has partnered with various restaurants and cafés to provide co-working space in their off hours.
Every location (as far as I know) has OUTLETS and WIFI, and most have unlimited coffee/tea. Some even have discounts on food!
You can try Flexday for free, and after that it’s $9/month, with 10 “credits” included*. You can always add more credits if you need them. Many locations are just 4 credits (and some are 2 or 3), so you could easily do some co-working a couple times per month for only $9/month.
*Flexday changed things up a bit later in 2019, and instead of credits, you have $10/month on the most basic plan that you can spend at co-working locations. It’s the same amount and system, but basically “credits” are now “dollars.”
In 2019, I checked out The Fortunate Fox, Eighteen30, Betty’s, Montchant, Cafe Nicole, Creeds, Marben, Heart Clean Eats, and Drake Commissary.
Betty’s has the most outlets out of all of them, and a really cool, vibrant, fun atmosphere. The Fortunate Fox and Eighteen30 feel a little more chic, and both are really great spots to work.
Montchant has the fewest outlets out of all of them, and the fewest food options because it’s a café, and not a restaurant. BUT, it has a crazy wide selection of cakes, and delicious coffee. It’s also the farthest north of all of them, just north of Lawrence Station, so if you’re not a downtown dweller (like me), it could be a really good option (and it’s also only 2 credits!).
Cafe Nicole is inside a hotel, and when I went there with a friend to co-work together, it wasn’t too busy (which is great!). The only other people there seemed like they were meeting up for a business meeting and offered to move so we could have more convenient (and less trip hazard-y) access to outlets.
Creeds is super interesting because it’s this gorgeous, bright space that also has a dry cleaning service. Because, why not? Creeds has tons of outlets and was full of other people with their laptops. It felt the most like a “co-working space” out of everything so far.
Marben has a darker interior, and it feels quite cozy. The Flexday space is at the back of the narrow restaurant, so you feel tucked away in a quiet, secret hideaway. I’ve seen a few other people there before at the same time, and each time, it’s been very quiet (except the one time I was having a conversation with a friend, but no one seemed upset or annoyed).
Heart Clean Eats is my favourite pick so far for food. It’s bright, with large windows to observe the goings on outside, and has a great view of the CN Tower. I went around lunch time, so it was a bit busier with people ordering and eating food, but there were still tons of tables available.
Drake Commissary has a really cool vibe. It feels like a cozy, communal lounge. The Flexday area is in the back corner, with a mix of longer tables, comfy chairs and couches, and a long, narrow table like a bar counter along one of the walls (that lets you peek into the pastry kitchen) with cute little lamps that just make you feel more productive. One consideration for this location is that, while most seats/tables have access to outlets, not all do.
I can confirm that all of these locations of unlimited coffee/tea, and Creeds has a discount on food.
Overall, Flexday is a great alternative to your standard coffee shop, and it’s a fun way to check out different restaurants – but there’s no obligation to buy any food while you’re there.
- Ability to be spontaneous
- A fun way to explore new spots
- Take up space for hours on end with zero guilt
- Free coffee and tea (most places)
- Food discounts (in some places)
Something to keep in mind:
- Outside food and drinks aren’t allowed anywhere, so if you do plan to spend hours upon hours in a Flexday location, you’ll likely end up buying food. This isn’t necessarily bad, but it might mean you spend more than you would normally spend at, say, Starbucks.
Want to try it out? Sign up here or use “melissakix” as your referral code when you sign up through the app. Bonus: We BOTH get 5 bonus credits (now, “dollars”) after your first check-in with your free trial.
Let me know what you think!