Hi Abby here! Scheduling meetings in different time zones is important when you are setting up interviews with potential au pairs. In my daily work, I schedule meetings with customers and co-workers all over the world. And even though I do this often, it still takes practice to schedule across time zones. These are the tips, tricks, and tools I use to make world scheduling easier.
Minimize confusion when you set up the meeting
The best way I’ve found to reduce scheduling confusion is to use the other person’s time zone and state the time zone. I then add my time and time zone in parentheses so they can see the time difference.
For example, “Do you have time to Skype at 4:00 pm Paris time?” or “Let’s meet at 5:00 p.m. your time in Berlin (8:00 a.m. my time in Seattle).” Most countries use the 24-hour clock so you might even write, “Can we chat at 1100 Tokyo time (2100 Atlanta time)?
FREE TOOLS THAT CAN HELP with SCHEDULing ACROSS TIME ZONES
There are numerous other apps and most smartphones have the ability to show clocks in multiple time zones at once.
My personal favorite is World Time Buddy because it shows me the whole day at once. This saves me from having to mentally calculate the time differences if the meeting time changes. I will also go over Time and Date Meeting Planner, Google Calendar, and Calendly as alternatives to World Time Buddy.
World Time Buddy and World Clock Meeting Planner
World Time Buddy and World Clock Meeting Planner help visualize the time differences between your location and two other locations at the same time. With a free account World Time Buddy will even remember your time zones so you don’t have to enter them every time.
Most calendars have the ability to show different time zones. In Google Calendar, go to the settings gear in the upper right corner. Then scroll down until you see “Time Zone”.
It will only show two time zones along the left side of the daily calendar. However, you can add multiple time zones in the World Time Zone clock module below the monthly calendar.
Another tool that may help you schedule across time zones is Calendly. What I like about Calendly, besides being free, is that you can set the times you’re available. Then, time zones are handled automatically.
To use Calendly you set up your availability, then you send out a link. This gives people the ability to sign up for the times that are convenient for them. There’s no email back and forth required.
Going to a web site and signing up for a time slot may feel a little impersonal. But the convenience can make up for it.
DO YOU Have Tips for Scheduling ACROSS TIME ZONES?
Do you have any tips or tricks for setting up meetings across time zones? What are your favorite apps and tools? We would love to hear from you in the comments below. If you are an au pair host mom or dad join us in our Facebook group My Au Pair and Me Host Family Community. It’s nice to talk to other host families and know you’re not alone!