As 2020 draws near, we are considering business travel tips for corporate travelers in 2020. Many of our tips are the same as every year. For example, it always makes sense to have a designated bag of essentials like business cards and a backup credit card, office supplies, and toiletries ready at all times.
And, using only carry-on bags protects you from losing your valuables when your suitcase falls of off the luggage cart at Kennedy, Orly, or Heathrow. But, as technology evolves each year, business travelers need to adapt and 2020 is no different.
Jet lag is the same if you don’t prepare on every on every one of your trips but travel apps get better every year.
Basic Business Travel Tips for Every Businessman
Work travel basics are still the same when it comes to using only carry-on bags and keeping your toiletries and other essentials packed in advance. Other useful tips include packing with check-in security in mind.
Putting liquids in a clear plastic bag is a good strategy as it makes security checks easier and reduces the chances of having medications confiscated. Bring casual as well as business clothes plus gym clothes and invest in good luggage that is easily packed and handled.
Always Book Direct Flights
Time is money is an old saying but it is one of the tips that is just as true in 2020 as always. As often as you can, book direct flights when you are travelling on business. You will arrive sooner, not be as tired, and have more time and energy to deal with business matters when you arrive.
Consider Staying Close to the Airport
Experienced travelers know that when you travel for business you want to be as efficient as possible. Having your lodging close to the terminal lets you get settled faster and off to a quicker start than otherwise.
The only reasons to choose a hotel that is distant from your airport are when it is convenient to your business and for you team while traveling and when you will be spending an extended length of time there.
Pack Light and Well
Living out a suitcase can be very inefficient. One of our most important travel tips is that better packing and organizing will save you time every day, time that can be devoted to business.
Packing light lets you carry less weight and be more mobile. Things that you rarely need can typically be purchased when you are traveling. Don’t overpack and your travel experience will be happy in 2020.
Invest in Good Luggage
A friend of our on a work trip to New York got out of her taxi and watched her suitcase slide into traffic as the handle separated from the bag. Invest in good luggage and does not fall apart!
Better brands of luggage have nice compartments that help you organize, rollers to make them easier to move through the terminal, and are sturdier to protect against clumsy baggage handlers and other risks of travel.
Use a Garment Bag for Pants and Shirts
No matter how talented you are at packing, pants and shirts will do better and avoid wrinkles if you carry them in garment bags. When you arrive at your hotel, hang up the garment bag and you avoid the extra wrinkling that happens when you repeatedly sort through your suitcase.
Check the Weather for your Destination
How should you dress for your business trips? Do you need a raincoat or umbrella? Do you need a heavy coat, gloves, scarf, and hat? Or you need a gallon of sunscreen and lightweight clothing?
The simple answer to these questions is to check the weather where you are going well before you get to the gate for your flight. You can “Google” the temperature where you are going or watch the international weather report on CNN.
That way you can avoid having to over pack or having to buy new clothes at your destination.
Always carry a portable power charger
Your smartphone is often your best friend when you are traveling for any reason. And, you can lose your best friend when it loses its charge due to frequent use. Finding a place to charge your phone on the go can be difficult.
Our tips include always bringing a portable charger and you will have a backup plan while you search for a place to recharge.
Always try to Board Early
When some travel, they like arriving just in time to the terminal and at the gate for their flights. We think that this can be overdone. Rather, always try to board early so that you can get settled in and will always have a space for your carry on luggage without having it checked and having to wait at your destination.
Pack a Healthy Snack
Getting healthy food when you are on a business trip can be difficult. In fact, there are travel destinations where the food may not be safe when you go out and explore and your credit card may not be accepted. The best idea in this regard is to add a healthy snack or two to your attache case. That will tide you over between safe meals.
Build a Medical Kit
The most simple injuries, sunburns, cuts, and scrapes for yourself or your team can be easy to deal with when traveling if you have a simple medical kit. Add something for headaches, the common cold, traveler’s diarrhea, sleep, and other common travel ailments.
If there are items that may require a doctor’s prescription (like antibiotics for traveler’s diarrhea), go to see the doctor and get what you need along with a copy of the prescription to prove that the medicine is from your doctor.
Train your Body for Different Time Zones
When smart international travelers are going to distant time zones they train their bodies to prevent jet lag by modifying their hours for work and for sleep several days in advance. Do this and avoid the headaches and mental confusion that go with jet lag when travelling for any reason.
Skip the Rental Car if you can
A rental car may be essential if you are going to travel to locations where a train or taxi will not take you. But, a rental car that you will not really need is an unnecessary expense and inconvenience that soaks up your time when picking it up and dropping it off. Put the credit cards away and skip the rental car if you can.
Business Travel Packing Tips
How well and how completely you pack for a business trip can make all the difference in the world. Here are a few or our favorite packing tips.
Think about how many days you will be “on the road” for your trips, what items are absolutely necessary, and which items can be purchased at your destination if needed. Bring light weigh clothing and colors that you can mix and match.
For shorter trips wear the same shoes throughout the trip. Wear any heavy clothing on the plane. When you come back from each business trip take a quick look at items that you never used and don’t include them on the next trip!
Make a Packing List
The best way to pack most efficiently is to make a packing list and update it as needed. That packing list should always include medications that you take and toiletries. Ideally you have a designated bag for these items.
To the extent that your travel takes you to very different climates at different times of the year you will wish to have separate lists for travel to cold winter locations and hot, tropical summer areas.
Get a Good Backpack
A good backpack can be invaluable for many business travelers. It should contain many useful compartments, be made of durable fabric, and be the right size to use as a carry-on. Although a backpack will not be appropriate for most business meetings, it will be ideal for getting you to and from your destination and getting around when you are there.
Mark & Label your Luggage
Don’t get confused when picking up your luggage because every black suitcase that passes on the conveyor belt looks like yours. Even more important, don’t lose your luggage and not have it properly labeled with your name, email address, physical address, and phone number.
You may wish to have different labels for different places that you are traveling to so that the airline at your destination only needs to contact a local phone number and send your luggage to a local address!
Get your Travel Toiletries in Bulk
Experienced business travelers have their toiletries for travel set aside in their own designated bag. Buying the items that you need in bulk and having a stash from which to replenish your travel bag is an excellent idea.
Healthy Business Travel Tips
A few basic health tips for business travel include taking time to exercise, getting enough sleep, eating healthy, limiting alcohol, and staying hydrated by drinking enough water every day. When eating out, check the menu for healthy items before ordering the special or the fatty, sweet, spicy things at the top of the page.
Skip Free Treats
For business travelers who want to avoid putting on extra weight, skip the free treats. Eating healthy food is essential for healthy business travel and sugary, fatty, and spicy treats don’t fit into a healthy diet. Plus, you don’t want to “fill up” on treats and then not experience healthy regular meals.
Workout before Dinner
Working out helps keep you in shape while traveling, helps keep your weight in check, and helps you sleep better too. The best time for a workout is before dinner. Do your exercise routine, take a shower, and dress casually for a nice evening meal. You will have a better appetite and digest your food better too.
Bring Some Hand Sanitizer
Beware of fomites when traveling. These are germs that live on surfaces everywhere. Many of these germs cause diseases. After handling things all day long, using hand sanitizer before eating is an excellent idea.
The sort of sanitizer that you can bring with you is ideal as you often will not have time to run back to your hotel and luggage before an evening business meeting over supper.
Skip the Escalator
If you want to stay in good physical condition while traveling, do things like skipping the escalator and using the stairs or skipping the people mover and walking to and from your flight. This is especially important when your business travel consists of back to back flight and long meetings.
If you are getting tense at the end of a long day or business meetings, stretching helps. Stretch regularly at the beginning of the day, when taking a break from meetings and in the evening. You will sleep better and find that issues like nagging back and neck pains go away.
At the Airport
Check in before you get to the airport and avoid the longer lines. Getting approved for the TSA pre-check saves time as well. And, using a business lounge lets you relax and/or take care of business issues away from a crowded waiting area.
Download your airline/airport app before leaving
If you want to get accurate, up to the minute, updates on flights and other airline or airport information, download your app even before leaving home.
Follow AskTSA on Twitter
If you need answers to questions about airport security rules, this is an ideal place to ask. They provide daily updates on important travel issues and will answer pretty much any question that you have about airport security issues. When traveling business people often follow AskTSA on Twitter to save time and energy
Get a day pass to a lounge
Having a quiet place to rest between flights, especially when there are delays is essential for smart and healthy business travel. Look into a VIP plan with your favorite airline. The expense will be paid back with better rest and relaxation while experiencing unavoidable airport delays.
Get TSA Precheck if you can
If you would like to avoid the repeated fuss and bother at airport security check-ins, look into getting OK’d for TSA pre-checks. For only $85 for five years you won’t have to remove your shoes, liquids, laptops, belts or light jackets.
Learn the airports
It can be really easy to get lost in a large modern airport and waste time and energy getting to and from flights. Learn your airports, where the lounges are, and where you can find a sit down restaurant without a long waiting line.
Learn the fastest routes in and out and where to find bathroom facilities. Your travel days will go easier even if you have to explore a bit to find things.
How can I make my Business travel Easier?
There are many business travel tips to make things easier for you and your team. Most of them have to do with efficiency, convenience, and comfort. Here is our short list.
- Pre-book transfers to and from the airport and avoid missing your flights or not finding a taxi for hours at a time.
- Always choose the same hotels when you travel frequently and benefit from being a “regular” for whom rooms are always available and you even get to leave a bag with them for your next trip.
- Build up loyalty points by using the same hotel chains. As these add up, you will benefit from free room upgrades and services.
- Have a designated travel kit that includes necessities so that you never arrive at your business location without your toothbrush or experience the difficulties related to other easily-forgotten items.
- Hide a credit card in your luggage so that you never find yourself in a strange city at night having lost your wallet or purse and no way to pay for anything when travelling for business.
- Carry a list of contact numbers in your suitcase for when you travel and lose your smartphone or it quits working. Today no one remembers phone numbers because we all rely on the phone’s memory or an app like WhatsApp. Experienced business travelers carry a separate hard copy of the numbers and addresses that they need for them selves and their team.
- Learn to pace yourself when traveling so that you are always in top form at the critical moments for your business affairs.
- Try not to travel when everyone else does. This obviously includes avoiding travel during peak vacation travel times but also means leaving home on Sunday evening and even coming back early on Saturday morning. This typically means an extra night or two in the hotel but you will always be rested in more productive if you take this approach.
What Should I wear to the airport Business Trip?
Smart travelers know that many things go into creating a positive travel experience. And, comfort is at the top of the list, especially for long travel days. What you should wear for your trip should be clothes that are wrinkle-resistant and spill-tolerant as well.
The clothes you wear to the terminal should fit comfortably while walking around and when sitting during long flights. And, if you are going to be working as soon as you arrive, your outfit needs to be appropriate for a meeting.
Multiple layers are a good idea when you are traveling between hot and cold climates with a chilly airplane ride in between.
How Can I lose weight while travelling for work?
Not enough time to exercise and high-calorie food are the usual culprits when it comes to gaining weight when you travel frequently for work. The first strategy to fight this is to avoid rich food as much as you can and limit your intake when you cannot. But, your best way to lose weight while traveling is to work out.
The treadmill is one of the first options for many travelers but simply walking in the morning and evening when you are not attending to work is also good. If you do not have access to a gym, push-ups, sit-ups, and air squats help you burn calories as well. If you have an exercise app on your smartphone, that may be useful as well.
How do I pack my carry on for a week business?
Travel for your work is difficult enough before you throw in presenting yourself professionally with a limited set of wardrobe choices. Now you are asking me to packing everything for the work week in my carry on?
Well, it can be done. Start by wearing your bulky items like your blazer on the plane. Then only pack clothing that can be color-coordinated and one pair of shoes what will go with everything.