You have seen those business travellers. You know, the ones who breeze through security, or turn up at the boarding gate exactly the moment to walk onto the plane. There is a certain skill to a stress free work trip, which comes with years of travel and practice, and adopting a few key habits that can be utilised from the airport to the boardroom.
Do not be fooled by Cheap Prices
Who does not love a bargain? However, in Travel, cheaper is not always better. Here are a few things to consider, to take the stress out of your next business trip:
- Beware of hidden costs in cheap prices: Do you need to pay extra to change your flight when a meeting needs to be rescheduled at the last minute?
- An average travel search takes anywhere from 1 to 5 hours: What is the opportunity cost of your time spent researching, booking or resolving delays?
- It can be absolute mayhem when something goes wrong: Do you have someone to call at any hour, in case of a travel emergency?
Travel success begins before you even step out of your house. A smart packing routine can save you time and ensure you look sharp in every situation. First things first, skip checked luggage. With the right packing techniques, you can pack for a trip of up to two weeks in a carry-on. Here are a few quick tips:
- Choose the right bag
- Review your clothing selections
- Choose the right folding technique (see our tips on the next page)
Check in ASAP
Another habit to get into before you leave your house, is to check-in as soon as possible. You can check-in on your mobile app or online. Just do it as soon as it is available, as you get to skip the long check-in lines at the airport, and you can often choose a better seat closer to the front of the plane. With the help of technology, most airlines will open online flight check-in at least 24-hours in advance:
Do check with your dedicated travel manager or airline on their online check-in conditions, as this varies by airlines.
As in your everyday business, it pays to seize opportunities when you travel. Flight changes and unexpected delays are not uncommon and it’s all about making the most of your time when that happens. Frequent flyers know how packed schedules can get when on the road, so if you do have some rare downtime,
- Plug in at the lounge and catch up on some work
- Mix business with pleasure and take the opportunity to see the city
- Take advantage of communal spaces at the airport or hotel, which will provide company and possible networking opportunities.
Use Technology to Streamline
All travel brands are jumping on the technology bandwagon: self-checkin kiosks at airports and hotels are sprouting up, handphones are doubling up as boarding passes and hotel room keys, and more. Save time and enjoy increased convenience by embracing technology as your friend. Tablets have also become as effective as laptops, and take up less space, very crucial for a light packing business traveller. Use them to keep track of work and read up on meetings. With WiFi readily available now, staying connected has never been easier.
Do not overlook the Importance of a Break
However, constant connection and travel can take its toll, with disrupted sleep and exercise routines. Successful travellers know how important it is to combat travel fatigue, which is essential to clear
the mind and reconnect with friends and family. It will also help reduce stress and negative feelings, both of which are drains on productivity and creativity. So, in your quest to become the ultimate corporate traveller, do not forget to take some time to smell the roses.
5 Steps to Pack Like a Pro
1. Carefully evaluate what you need
Have a plan – research on the weather, limit awkward items such as shoes and plan daily outfits around a few versatile pieces. Do not be afraid to make up a list, which helps limit you and also ensure you don’t miss anything.
2. Plan to wear your bulky items
One of the best ways to save space in your carry-on is to wear your bulkier items to the airport, such as blazers.
3. Rolling and Bundle Wrapping
Rolled clothes take up less space than folded clothes, so roll your more casual items. This will also help keep them wrinkle-free. For thinner items such as shirts and undergarments, you can roll a few together. For thicker items, like jeans, roll one pair at a time.
Bundle wrapping is a technique that helps to ensure the clothes that cannot be rolled will not get wrinkled. It is as simple as interweaving clothes into a bungle. This technique should be used for
your dressier pieces such as slacks and collared shirts.
How to bundle wrap: Lay your item with one end in the bag and the other hanging over the edge. Repeat with the next piece hanging over the opposite edge of the bag. Then fold in the overhanging
edges, alternating sides as you go.
Pack the essentials in small, travel sized containers. Pairing down and putting them in a large resealable bag helps to ensure no surprise spills.
5. Put it all together
Once you have all of your items prepared and ready to go, the hard part behind. Start off by packing your shoes with the soles facing the edges or bottom of the bag. Don’t forget to stuff your shoes with loose accessories or socks to maximise space.
Next layer your items heavy to light. Create a base around the sides and bottom of the bag with the heavier rolled and folded clothes. Depending on how much you have, you should be able to create an even layer followed by your toiletries. If you have any delicate items (rolled or folded), make sure to put them on top.
Finish off with miscellaneous items such as chargers, accessories and any electronics such as lap tops.