Business Travel Tips for Successful Travelling
Plum Guide has collated these handy business travel tips and hacks to help make your next business trip as smooth and stress-free as possible.
Although we live in an age where we can connect with people from all around the world at the click of a button, there are times when only a face-to-face meeting will do. Corporate travel trips are opportunities for clients and associates from different regions to get to know the real you, as opposed to just being the voice on the other end of a conference call. And so you want to ensure you arrive fresh and relaxed in order to make a good impression and to foster stronger working partnerships.
Here are 7 business travel tips to help you achieve success:
1. Plan to be practical
Don’t, for example, book accommodation that’s miles away from where you will be working. If at all possible, book somewhere that’s within walking distance of the office. This will save you time in the mornings (useful if you’re suffering from jet lag), and the exercise will be a lot better for you than sitting in the back of a taxi or dealing with fellow commuters in rush hour traffic.
When it comes to choosing the right type of accommodation for business travel, you should take into account whether or not a hotel, serviced business apartment or guest house is most appropriate and practical for you and any colleagues you’re travelling with. This may be decided for you by your company, but if you are tasked with booking the accommodation yourself, make sure you avoid any potentially awkward scenarios. For example, no one wants to share a bathroom with their boss on a business trip.
2. Pack light
Minimise the time you spend at both your departure and arrival airport by only taking cabin luggage and not checking any luggage into the hold of the aircraft. This will help you avoid the inconvenience of having your luggage mislaid or delayed. If you need a smart outfit to change into on arrival, pack it in a suit bag. Avoid taking expensive jewellery and accessories with you. These can make you a conspicuous target for thieves.
Consider where your laptop will go. It should be easy to get it out of your luggage for airport security checks and for working during the flight. Wearing slip-on shoes and trousers that don’t require a belt will also make going through security less of a hassle for you. Extra undergarments and any chronic medication you may need should also be packed, as you can never predict if and when flight disruptions and delays will occur.
3. Maximise your sleep
Much of what you experience onboard the aircraft will be down to the class of travel your company has booked you in and the quality of the airline itself. If you’re fortunate enough to be in business or first you’ll most likely benefit from a seat that can recline into a horizontal bed. But even then, a noisy passenger or someone who keeps their light on all night might prevent you from getting enough rest. (The cheek of it.) Some airlines do offer complimentary eye masks and earplugs, but just in case pack your own. The same applies if you’re in economy. Sleeping in an economy seat is often an endurance test, but blocking out as much light and sound as possible will help you to get some rest. An inflatable neck cushion can prevent you from waking up with a stiff neck. Remember to also drink lots of water and if you do drink alcohol try and keep it to a minimum. This will speed up your recovery from the flight and limit the effects of jet lag.
4. Allow some time to adjust
You want to put your best self forward when you have your meeting, so factor in some time to physically recover and revitalise your body. A walk, a run or a swim will destress you and make you feel refreshed. Try and schedule your meeting times with this in mind. If you have to go straight to the meeting from the airport, consider investing in some dry shampoo. It can work wonders when there’s no time for a shower, especially when you need to look your just-out-of-a-salon best.
5. Be prepared
Make sure you have the right adapters and plugs for the country you’re visiting. The last thing you want is to arrive in a foreign city and not be able to contact colleagues or family. It’s not good for your business, your personal life or your blood pressure. Having an external battery and charger is also a worthwhile back up plan for business travel.
6. See some sights
Yes, you are primarily travelling for business reasons, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take some time out to explore and experience a different culture or city. Choose one thing you’d be really interested in seeing, whether it’s a museum, a scene of natural beauty or a site of historical interest. It will add more to your understanding and appreciation of both the place and the people you are visiting.
7. Things can go wrong (but don't panic)
All the preparation in the world can’t guarantee that something will not go wrong on your business trip. A train delay, flight disruptions or a taxi driver with no sense of direction can scupper the most well-intentioned plans. If this happens try and keep a realistic perspective on matters. Especially if you’ve just arrived in a foreign country and are jet lagged. There are some things that are simply out of your control, so adapt your plans accordingly, stay safe and put it all down to experience.
We hope these business travel tips are helpful when you next travel, and we wish you success in your ventures. Team Plum Guide
Find the right accommodation for you next business trip: