Business Travel, Ottawa

How To Travel Light: an Interview with Oksana from Elite Modeling

July 30, 2013

Oksana is a model with Elite modeling, her career has taken her to some of the most beautiful locations in the world but when we caught up with her last week, she was just happy to be home. We asked Oksana to answer some questions about traveling for work and what she looks for in the places she stays around the world. :Can you tell me a little bit about yourself?

Oksana:  I started Modeling when I was 14 years old in Ottawa and I have been travelling ever since. now I live in Montreal most of the time, or whenever I can.

CS:Do you travel for work a lot?

Oksana:I really do! Actually I would say I’m ready to stop globe trotting and settle down now!

CS: What kind of accommodations do you stay in when you are working away from home?

Oksana: I spend a lot of time away from home and living in hotels or in Model apartments. At this point in my life I try to avoid staying in model apartments, it’s not the glamorous life people expect when they think about modelling. You’ll be staying with a lot of other people in an apartment and you don’t get your own space.

I really like having my own space, that’s why I always end up calling you guys and getting a private apartment when I stay in Montreal.

CS: Do you like staying with

Oksana: Yes I do, I’ve stayed with you guys already a few times in Downtown Montreal. Everything is good, everything is clean, and everyone is very professional.

CS: What is the most amazing place you have ever gotten to travel to for work?

Oksana:  You know, It really depends on who you’re with.  You can be in the most amazing place in the world or somewhere really ordinary but if you’re in good company it is always a great experience.

One time I got to stay in this amazing place called Careyes in Mexico, it was very stunning, very exclusive, just a few villas. Our house was next to Heidi Klum’s house. That was pretty amazing.

CS: What is the one thing you can’t leave home without?

Oksana: You mean besides my passport?

I actually realized this about myself on my last trip, I just came back from Europe, and on that trip I really noticed how I don’t need very much at all and I travel really light. You start to realize that the only thing that is essential is your passport, and everything else you might need you can always buy where you’re going, so I really don’t stress much anymore over packing.

I notice that people who don’t travel often might plan weeks in advance, and I used to make lists and plan too. Now I just make sure I have my passport.

CS: What are your must-haves for accommodations when you are staying away from home for business?

Oksana: These days, I really value having my privacy. Here is what I look for: my private apartment, with a comfortable bed and a comfortable pillow, and it’s clean. A good shower is another must-have, and one thing I really missed when I was in Europe was a washer and dryer in the apartments – so now I make sure that where I’m staying has that. When you’re stuck washing clothes in the sink it is no fun.

CS: What is your favorite luxury when it comes to accommodation, what is your favorite guilty pleasure?

Oksana:I love room service! I love staying in really nice places where I can order really good food. That’s definitely my favorite guilty pleasure. I like to treat myself when I can so if there’s a spa, I’m super happy.  As for luxury accommodations, I like to have a gym where I’m staying, that’s important to me.

CS: What is your biggest pet peeve when you travel?

Oksana: Anything that’s dirty or disorganized, when you’re traveling for work so much there is a real limit to how much control you can have over the way things are done. So it drives me crazy when things are disorganized. When you travel a lot you have to learn that you can’t control anything but yourself.

CS: Have you learned anything new about Montreal on this trip?

Oksana: When you travel a lot, you really learn to appreciate a lot of things about home. I actually really miss being at home, being close to my friends and family, and knowing where everything is.  When you come home it’s so great, you have your hair salon that you go to, and all the little things that you need, not to mention having your friends and family nearby.

So on this trip to Montreal, I really learned to appreciate being home!

CS: Do you have any stories that will make us jealous?

Oksana: I guess there’s the story of when my boyfriend proposed to me under the Big Buddha on top of a mountain in Hong Kong. It’s this really incredible spot overlooking the ocean and the mountains, under this majestic statue, the Tian Tan Buddha. My friends really liked hearing that story because it was so romantic and beautiful.

CS: Do you have any travel tips for our readers?

Oksana: I used to make lists of everything I needed when I first started out and that really helped, but now I just pack really light. I would say don’t over pack and don’t stress about packing. Just bring the basic things you need, your toothbrush, contact lenses if you need them. Pack light if you can, you can always find anything you need where you are going and it’s not worth stressing out over. As long as you have your passport and your toothbrush, you’ll be fine, and you can always buy another toothbrush!

I actually discovered a lot about myself the last trip I took, I was in Europe for a while and I decided to start taking myself out for dinner or for coffee and just really enjoying myself even though I was alone. When you travel a lot you’re alone a lot, and it is hard at first, but it is something you get used to. My last trip I really discovered that I was learning to be at peace with myself, which is something that can happen when you get used to traveling for work and being alone, it makes you grow.



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