Traveling for business trips can be exciting, but they can also be stressful. By preparing for your trip ahead of time, this will help you to accomplish the goals of your trip and to be prepared for the unexpected. Here are some business travel tips to help you have a stress-free work trip.
Dr. Robert Applebaum, Owner, ApplebaumMD
Travel with sleep essentials to help get a good night’s rest, especially for long flights. Pack a pillow, sleep mask, blanket, neck pillow, and noise-canceling headphones for optimal comfort. You want to make sure you are fully rested and business ready when you land.
Take Some Time to Relax
Ryan Rottman, Co-Founder and CEO, OSDB
When you’re on a work trip, one thing to keep in mind is not to force it too much. Conventions, for example, usually offer all sorts of additional opportunities for networking – which is fantastic! However, don’t take on so much that you’re not at your very best for the main event of your business trip. Create a schedule, and even try to pencil in a little fun!
Using the Amenities
Sean O’Brien, CMO, Modloft
Business trips can include long meetings, conventions, or networking events. This is why it’s important to choose a hotel that will be relaxing, and will help you to focus. Make sure to enjoy your room, and take some time for yourself after a long day. Try to use the amenities, such as having a 30-minute workout before your busy day, or grabbing some coffee in the lobby before heading down to your meeting. This is your home away from home for your business trip, so try to enjoy it.
Enjoy the City
Dylan Fox, Founder & CEO, AssemblyAI
When you’re traveling for business, one sure way to stay stress-free is to set aside a little time to enjoy the city. Whether it’s a place you’ve seen a dozen times or a brand-new destination, taking some time away from the business portion of your trip can actually help regenerate you. Many people find that they can both be productive and still enjoy themselves on business trips. So, look over your schedule and fit in some sightseeing. You may even be able to set up a museum visit with some colleagues to network, or do lunch at the trendiest cafe overlooking the city’s most popular monument. The ideas are plentiful!
Check the Weather
Liraz Birnbaum, Founder and CEO, Lula’s Garden
Regardless of the time of year, it’s always helpful to check the weather forecast before traveling. This way you can pack the essentials and will be prepared for whatever comes your way. It may be a good idea to throw in a travel-size umbrella, boots, or a light windbreaker for rainy days. If the weather is going to be sunny and hot most days, pack a bottle of sunscreen and opt for breathable clothing. This will help keep you cool and your skin happy. Lastly, comfortable footwear is a must. Walking through the airport can be quite the hike, so throw your heels in a carry-on and wear some comfy sneakers for those long walks.
Sara Shah, Co-Founder & Co-CEO, Journ
When traveling for work, try to travel light and select clothing that can be mixed and matched to create many combinations. A travel bag that has several compartments can make quickly accessing important items easier without digging through everything. Pack small items that can help you rest while you’re traveling like an inflatable pillow, eye mask, and noise cancelling headphones. Remember to pack healthy snacks and bring a hydroflask to fill with water after going through security. Pre-check is always a good idea to make getting through security more effortless. Make sure your electronics are charged in advance so you aren’t searching for an outlet or dealing with low battery mid-flight.
Keep An Eye On Your Flight
Robbie Salter, Co-Founder, Jupiter
Like any other aspect of business, it’s all about preparation, asking yourself about what happens during each leg of your trip. These days, with COVID restrictions changing by the day, the need for preparedness has never been greater. Monitor your flight, expect delays and cancellations, carry lots of chargers and plugs in the likely event you’ll need to extend battery life, and wear clothing that can easily be layered.
Have a Travel Survival Kit
Dara Khosrowshahi, CEO, Uber
I’m always amazed when I hear people say they are too busy to take a holiday. As a people manager, I see how much more focused and energized people are when they take the time to go on a trip. As a business leader, I view vacation benefits not as a business nicety, but a business necessity.
Know what is going on in the city you are visiting and pack earplugs. I always check local happenings on all trips. Have a travel survival kit. I bring every computer and iPad accessory ever created. I always take gym clothes because I find that exercise the morning after you land is the best way to adjust to local time and fight jet lag. I never travel without my noise-canceling headphones — I put them on as soon as I sit down. I’m in my own little world, and it’s a beautiful thing.
Michael Hennessy, Founder and CEO, Diathrive
When going on business trips, it is important to pack the essentials and to stay safe. Be sure to pack any needed medications or safety devices that you might need. Also, be prepared and stay flexible when traveling. It’s a good idea to print out any materials that you may need for a presentation ahead of time, this way you can be stress-free and better prepared.
Save Travel Time
Courtney Buhler, CEO & Founder, Sugarlash PRO
Booking direct flights whenever possible can make work trips less stressful. You’ll only have to worry about making one flight and whether or not it is on time. If you cannot book direct flights, pay special attention to how long your layovers would be between connecting flights.
Consider Joining a Trusted Travelers Program
Chris Vaughn, CEO, Emjay
If you’re a frequent business traveler, consider applying for Trusted Travelers Programs to get expedited screening benefits. TSA PreCheck lets you access shorter security lines and exempt you from following airport guidelines for removing certain items from your bag or person. While it does require you to complete a comprehensive online form and schedule an in-person interview, it’s definitely worth it. For a higher price, you get a 5 year Global Entry membership and speed through customs screening when returning to the US.
Liz Tomic, CGO, Flying Embers
There are various ways that you can help alleviate the stress that often accompanies business travel. First, I’d suggest investing in TSA PreCheck or Global Entry to save on time spent in the security line. I would avoid saving any time-sensitive work for the plane ride, since WIFI is often unreliable and spotty. And of course, book direct flights and skip the red-eyes if you can. The silver lining of any stressful work-related travel is you earn miles for airfare and points for hotels. Using a travel credit card can help you rack up the rewards twice as fast.
Valerie Wilson, Founder, Trusted Travel Girl
Travel definitely makes me happy. If you allow it, travel has the ability to expand your mind in a way you never realized was possible. Even the act of planning a trip gives me something to look forward to and brings me happiness. Travel has taught me patience, to surrender control to the uncontrollable, and effectively problem solve.