Business trips can be daunting, and especially so if it’s your first. You may have to give a presentation in an unfamiliar environment to senior board members or have the unenviable task of securing a new contract or client. And, on top of that, you may have to travel halfway across the country or even the world to do it.
If you’re about to go on your first business trip, check out the following tips to help you get through the experience and find ways to enjoy it;
- Be Prepared
If this is your first business trip, preparation is vital. You’re not on holiday, and your co-workers and bosses will, most likely, carefully watch your performances.
That said; the last thing you want is to forget something important or make a mistake that jeopardises the intended outcome of your trip.
To be prepared, make a list of everything that you need to take with you – both personal items and your business related necessities including paperwork, etc. – and double check that you’ve got everything with you.
- Pack Light
Business travellers normally travel with just the essentials because no one wants to lug around a huge suitcase when it’s not necessary. If you’re going to be going on a lot of business trips, we suggest investing in a good quality cabin sized bag that’s specifically designed for the business traveller.
It will have a compartment for your laptop, some space for paperwork and enough room to fit your other essentials. Get the right bag and your future self will thank you for it, as it will make travelling so much easier.
- Get Priority Boarding and Skip the Line at the Airport
There’s nothing worse than turning up at the airport on time and having to wait to check in, then wait to go through security and queue again to board the plane? The time you spend waiting could be better spent preparing yourself for your upcoming meetings.
Since you’re on a business trip, we suggest taking advantage of skipping the queues at the airport whenever possible. Lounges are also a good idea, so do look into what options are available at your departure destination(s).
- Make the Most of Your Free Time
It’s quite rare for business travellers to be on a tight schedule that doesn’t permit any downtime. That said; you’ll probably arrive at the destination, do your duties and have a few hours to yourself.
If you’re in a country that you haven’t visited before, why not get out and explore your new surroundings? Just be sure to maximise your time by planning your itinerary well and avoiding anything that might cut your time short, public transport included. Many travellers opt to hire a chauffeur to not only transport them to and from the hotel, but also to do some sight seeing.
- Understand Your Company’s Expense Policy
Make sure you’re 100% certain on what your company’s expense policy will cover. You need to know how much they’ll reimburse you for money spent on specific elements such as accommodation and entertainment during your trip.
Understanding this from the very beginning will ensure that your trip runs as smoothly as possible in terms of your expenses.
- Surviving the Trip
The overall key to surviving a business trip is preparation. Speak to your boss and make sure you know what the expenses policy is, use any priority add-ons at the airport, and make sure you’re properly organised to ace what it is you’re there to do.
And, once you’ve done all of that, your second half of your prep should be planning your downtime, which is a little more fun and a whole lot less stressful.