scorecardI'm an NYU student who commutes from New York to Florida every weekend for my internship. I've spent nearly $10,000 on travel.
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I'm an NYU student who commutes from New York to Florida every weekend for my internship. I've spent nearly $10,000 on travel.

Vincent Campanaro   

I'm an NYU student who commutes from New York to Florida every weekend for my internship. I've spent nearly $10,000 on travel.
Careers3 min read
The author super commutes from New York to Florida every weekend.    Courtesy of Vincent Campanaro
  • I'm an NYU student who landed a dream internship in Florida.
  • Every weekend, I super commute from New York to Florida to work my internship all weekend.

In high school, I ran my own travel agency. From that experience, I developed an appreciation for customer service and luxury hotel brands. When I enrolled at New York University last year, I decided to pursue an internship in the hospitality industry as a freshman.

However, given the relative scarcity of internships at luxury hotel companies in New York City, I broadened my search to opportunities nationwide. I got three interviews in three cities: Scottsdale, Arizona; Las Vegas; and Naples, Florida — all during midterm season.

Undertaking these interviews was a massive gamble, requiring me to invest over $1,500 in plane tickets and fly to and from each city on the same day. But, I knew I had to bet on myself.

I received two offers: one from The Ritz-Carlton, Naples, and another from a corporate office in Las Vegas for a different hotel chain. Having admired The Ritz-Carlton my entire life, choosing the former option was a pretty easy decision.

However, navigating the logistical challenges of super commuting —coordinating flights, securing accommodations, and managing my full-time studies — has been anything but easy.

My schedule has been the most difficult part

I am incredibly fortunate to have a manager who has accommodated my unique schedule, allowing me to work exclusively on weekends. This arrangement makes my super-commute between New York and Florida feasible — albeit invariably tight.

My classes run from Monday through Friday — starting at 11 a.m. on Monday and ending at 12:15 p.m. on Friday. After class, I head to the airport, boarding either the subway or a train. Travel time often doubles as study time — whether in-flight or waiting at the gate. I typically take an Uber or a shuttle to my hotel after landing.

Generally, the total travel time from my dorm to my hotel ranges from five to eight hours, door-to-door, depending on the airport and hotel locations. However, flight delays, such as one that resulted in my arriving at 1 a.m., can extend this timeline significantly.

Thankfully, the Ritz-Carlton provides highly competitive compensation — particularly due to the extensive hours required.

After finishing on Sunday, I head straight from the property to the airport to catch my 9 p.m. flight, arriving in New York around midnight. I then take a train or subway back to NYU, ultimately returning to my dorm between 2 and 3 a.m. on Monday.

This may not be feasible for everyone

I will acknowledge that achieving this particular feat was largely made possible by a unique set of circumstances. First, residing in New York City offers access to almost unlimited flights, ensuring flexibility in timing and competitive pricing. I have five airports within a train ride's distance to choose from.

On the accommodations front, being a Marriott associate has granted me significant discounts at Marriott hotels, keeping me profitable even amid Naples' sky-high winter prices. This benefit — combined with a supportive manager who has been very accommodating of my schedule — offers a level of flexibility that would have been unattainable under any other circumstances.

Plus, money certainly is certainly an issue. I use almost all of my pay to afford this travel. In all, I've spent just under $10,000 on hotels, flights, and cars. That means I will not have much money left over when this internship is over.

Even though it's difficult, I don't regret it

The transformative experiences and incredible lessons I'm learning at The Ritz-Carlton are preparing me for the future, instilling in me the values of diligence, adaptability, and a deep focus on customer satisfaction.

Despite the challenges of traveling thousands of miles monthly, the rewards have been immeasurable. Plus, the connections I have made, both within the company and in the broader community — many of whom come from backgrounds different from mine — have significantly broadened my perspective. I have encountered dozens of fascinating individuals simply by sitting next to them on a flight.

I'm often asked how I juggle my role at The Ritz-Carlton, coursework, and various other projects without feeling overwhelmed. My answer is simple: I don't see all of this as work but as the pursuit of my passions. Each task I embark on is driven by sincere interest and ambition, making every day an opportunity for discovery, learning, and personal growth.