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Traveling for work can sound like a great idea in theory. You get to discover a new location, get some time away from the office, and experience something new.
In reality, however, it can be rather stressful and tiring. If you have traveled quite a few times for work you might be well rehearsed in what it involves, but if you are relatively new or if you have a first trip coming up, you are going to want to be as prepared as possible.
While traveling for work might not end up being your favorite thing, there are certain things you can do that will help you to enjoy it. Below, we’ve put together some of our top tips for work travel that should help you to get the most out of it.
Think About Your Tech Needs in Advance
One of the first fundamentals that you need to do before traveling for work is to plan ahead of time. This means you should get things ready such as any equipment you might need as well as your usual packing items. If you are going somewhere for an exhibition, for example, you might need to bring branded objects and items like iPad rentals to show at your stand. By being prepared you won’t come up with any last-minute hiccups and will also know how much luggage you will need. Leaving it too late can also leave you not able to get the flights that you might need, or they could be very expensive.
When you’re going on a business trip, it is easiest if you can bring a carry-on suitcase with you. These are ideal as you won’t have to worry about waiting for it when you get to your destination and they’re also a lot easier to carry around.
Make a list and just bring the essentials and clothes you need. You can also get travel-size toiletries that you are able to bring on the plane and won’t take up unnecessary space in your case. It’s also cheaper to take a carry-on suitcase as opposed to a checked-in one — particularly if you are only going for a few days.
Get Those Air Miles
If you can, try to fly with the same airline every time that you go abroad for business. This means that you can collect points which soon rack up. With these points on your personal account, you will be able to use them for your own vacations in the future or you could put them towards hotel stays or other travel-related perks. You can also use them for upgrades or for food and drink. It’s worth trying to just use one airline if you can — you will soon find it’s another added perk to traveling so much for work!
Consider Putting An Out of Office Message
If you’re traveling for business or work, you’re most likely attending a conference or will need to attend several meetings. Either way, your schedule won’t be the typical 9-5. Consider setting up an Out of Office message on your email so recipients know they should expect a wait in your response time.
Also, make sure your colleagues know you plan to go out of town in advance, and make sure you have an internal Out of Office message for your co-workers as well.
Eat Healthy If Possible
When you are on the road it can be tempting to make the most of the hotel food that is on offer. If you are taking clients out for dinners then you can also find yourself drinking more than you would if you are at home. While this is fine every once in a while, too soon you will find that you are tired of this lifestyle and you are being pretty unhealthy. If you are putting on weight and feeling lethargic, you’ll soon find yourself burning out. To avoid this, try and select healthy options where you can and limit your drinking to a glass with dinner or just pick one night where you will have an alcoholic drink. This should keep it under control a bit more!
Don’t Forget All Your Chargers And Accessories
The last thing you want is to find yourself far from home without your phone and laptop chargers. Make sure you have all your tech accessories ready for travel so you never have to think twice about whether or not you remembered to pack your portable chargers.
Consider getting a portable charger that you can keep in your bag or purse so you’re always prepared for anything — a delayed flight, a wait in traffic, or otherwise.
Make Sure You Understand What Your Company Will And Won’t Expense
When you are away for work, your company will expense a certain amount of what you have to spend when you are there. If you haven’t traveled before for your company this can be a bit complex and there might be limits to what they will cover.
Before you go on your trip, be sure to speak to your boss or manager and find out just what is ok for you to spend and expense and what isn’t. You might have a certain budget for food each day for example, or they might not cover your alcoholic drinks. By getting clear clarification right from the off you don’t need to worry about it further down the line or end up out of pocket.
These are just a few top tips to help you make the most of your work travel the next time you need to go. It can feel like a bit of a minefield when you first start to travel for work, but once you have done it a few times you will find that it is a lot easier than you initially thought. The key is to be as organized as possible and ensure you have everything ready before you go.