Traveling for work doesn’t have to be a grind when you’re well organized—in fact, it can (and should) be fun. Make business travel more pleasurable by keeping the following tips and suggestions in mind. Bon voyage!
• Organize your paperwork. Planning ahead paves your way to a more pleasant journey. Map out your itinerary, and organize your tickets, confirmations, directions and other travel documents in a folder, keeping the papers in chronological order of your travels. Travel cases and document holders can help you keep everything in proper order.
• Bring cash on travel day. It’s always a good idea to keep a little cash–$100 or less–when traveling. If you’re going overseas, you might want to visit your bank before traveling and avoid the busy (or sometimes un-manned) foreign currency exchanges in airports. A divided travel wallet can help keep currencies separate.
• Travel light.Professional travelers save the time of checking luggage and baggage claim by carrying a bag that can fit in the overhead bin, or be stowed in front of them on the aircraft, and keep a smaller briefcase or portfolio inside the larger bag for business meetings.
• Wear layers. Bring a scarf, jacket, sweater, hat and gloves that you can easily put on or remove to keep yourself comfortable in varying temperatures. Check the weather for the location and time of year.
• Remember chargers and adaptors. A dead cell phone or a hairdryer you can’t use can leave you less than calm, cool and collected on meeting day. Many phone and electronics cases offer extra space for these necessary gadgets.
• Have plenty of business cards on hand. You’ll make a favorable impression when networking if you dispense them from a simple monogrammed card wallet.
• Bring a good book. If you can engross yourself in a real page turner, unanticipated delays are a bit less stressful. Today, seasoned travelers carry entire libraries and film collections in their tablets or e-readers–all in one slim case that slips into a shoulder bag.
• Plan something fun. Many business travelers complain that they never get to see the city they’re visiting because they’re “too busy.” With just a little advance planning, you can enjoy a museum tour, a meal at an iconic restaurant, even a matinee or evening performance on your off hours. Often, just planning ahead can make the difference and allow you to enrich your experience and make business travel exciting and fun.