If you work for a company that requires you to travel, you may be looking for tips to make your trip more efficient and pleasurable.
Not all jobs require travel, but those that do can be exhausting. Having to work while sleeping in a hotel room and eating room service is not all fun and games. Some people may love traveling for their job, but others may find that it disrupts their life at home. If you have children or a spouse, it can be stressful to leave them for weeks at a time. Make the most of your business trip by following these simple tips. You might even find you enjoy it.
One of the most important parts of traveling, whether for business or fun, is to plan ahead. Not only should you make sure that your flight, hotel, and transportation is set for your arrival, but you should also plan when you will need to eat, sleep, and try to have a little bit of down time.
Traveling for work can be stressful because you spend a bunch of your time traveling. While some people can enjoy reading or watching movies on the flight, it is still not relaxing like it is sitting at home. If you are trying to make a meeting right when you land, it can be worrisome if your plane is delayed or you run into other problems.
This is why it is important to make sure you plan out your trip as best you can. If you know you are going straight to a meeting when you get there, try to eat something while on the plane or during a layover. The last thing you want to do is walk into a meeting and be starving.
Try Not to Check a Bag
Checking a bag can be expensive and time-consuming. Even if your company is paying for your accommodations, you don’t want to be rushing to your meeting after having to wait for your bags. Try to fit whatever you can in your carry-on. This will save you hassle later.
If you can use a soft type of bag that can be squished into the overhead compartments or under your seat, that would be best as if you are not one of the first on the plane, finding space can be tricky.
Join a Rewards Program
There are many rewards programs out there through credit cards, hotels, and online booking sites. Find a program that works for you so you can earn points and get neat perks such as free upgrades, travel fee reimbursement and even VIP treatment.
You can usually earn points when you go out to eat, rent a car, or stay at a hotel. Once you accumulate points, you can get all sorts of rewards the next time you travel.
Understand Company Policies for Reimbursement
Usually, if you are traveling for work, your company will pay many of your accommodations. While a perk of business trips is that you don’t have to use your hard-earned money to pay for your hotel or rental car, you should definitely know what is and is not covered. For example, they may cover you for a meal or two a day, but not all three.
Your company may not reimburse you if you go exploring in your down time. If this is your first time traveling for this company, ask them what is covered so you are aware of how much you can spend. This way, if you decide to go somewhere during your trip that is not business-related, you will know if you have to pay for it or not out of your own money.
Remember as you are traveling, you are representing the company you work for. If possible, you should dress as you would when you go to work. While this can be uncomfortable, it also has some positive aspects to it. People who are dressed nicely are usually more respected and it might even help you land an upgrade or a free meal now and then.
You will also be more likely to get what you ask for when flying or staying in a hotel. You could also avoid having to stuff your suit in your suitcase if you are wearing it. There is less of a chance it will get wrinkled, and it’ll be ready to go when you need it.
Traveling Internationally? Take These Things into Consideration
If you are traveling internationally, make sure you understand currency exchange between your home country and the one you are going to so you have sufficient funds while there. You should also take into consideration whether or not you will need a special electrical plug as countries differ in their outlets.
It may be helpful if you can charge your cell phone using a USB as most computers will have those ports. This way, you will not have to carry a ton of plugs. Make sure you have an adapter for your laptop or business equipment if necessary.
Try to Do at Least one Enjoyable Thing
While some business trips may be short and hopefully sweet, others may be a week or two at a time. You might be traveling to a place you have never been before, or a place you go to frequently because of your company’s business. Either way, you should try to do one exciting thing that is not related to work while you are there. This will make you feel your trip was worth it if you come home with a memory more than a boring meeting. Even if it is eating dinner at a landmark place while you are there, you will have something to talk about that you did besides work.
Traveling for work can be super stressful, but it doesn’t have to be. While we all need to do things sometimes that we don’t want to in order to pay the bills, we can learn to make the most of the situation.