When you travel on business, you get on and off flights often and a lot. A smart traveller is quick on his feet and makes the best out of his trips. Here are a few tips to make your travel easier and a lot more productive.
The most important rule – that cannot be stressed enough – is to pack lightly. Carry nothing more than a medium sized backpack for a week’s trip to avoid having to check in your luggage. By rule of thumb, you don’t need anything that doesn’t fit in the bag.
Wear your heaviest set of clothes for the flight so as to save some space in the backpack. Pack one set of formals, a couple of fancy shirts or dresses, a week’s worth of underwear and socks. Throw in your toiletries, sunglasses, first aid kit and USB drives.
If you have prototypes or heavy items that you will need for your presentation, make it a point to send them to your hotel well in advance so that you wouldn’t have to bother carrying it with you.
Avoid wearing belts and stick to slip on footwear for the flight, as it you would be asked to take them off at the security. Who knows where you would need the couple of minutes that you save here!
If you’re traveling across time zones, set your watch to the time at your destination. Sleep as soon as you board or force yourself to stay awake throughout – It’s best to handle your jetlag during the flight instead of struggling with after reaching.
Use your out-of-reach time wisely. Make PDFs of mails and documents that you will need to read so that you can get them done at the airport or during the flight. You can also write blogs or type out those long emails that you’ve been meaning to work on for a long time.
A kind word and a smile go a long way when it comes to business travel. A little nicety might let you speed through the security, get the best suite from the desk clerk and even a glass of champagne on the house from that waiter whose day you just made with that cheery compliment!
When you’re traveling to a different country, learn to say ‘Hello’, ‘Please’, ‘Thank you’ and ‘Good-bye’ in the local language. And when you try to tell people that you cant speak their language in their language, be careful to sound like you mean it. Everyone likes it when a foreigner tries to speak their tongue, but even a hint of mockery could turn that smile into a frown.
Make plans to meet the prospective clients or business friends from your destination you’ve known through the social media. Offer to buy them coffee. A little quality time spent knowing them in person might make a much bigger difference than you would’ve thought.
Keep your luggage packed constantly. Business trip schedules can be unpredictable and you don’t want to miss out on packing something important because you did it all in a hurry.
While eating out in a strange city might be fun, it’s best to take a little precaution. Stick to whole foods and fruits most of the time so that you can keep a check on those extra calories.