Business Travel Hacks That Can Make Your Life Easier
Traveling for business can be fun, but it can also be a major pain. On top of coordinating logistics, you’ll be responsible for maintaining productivity during your travel hours.
All while meeting a number of obligations.
Thankfully, there are a number of business travel hacks that can streamline your business travel, enable you to be more productive, and ultimately make your life easier.
These business travel hacks can save you time and money and, perhaps most importantly, make you more comfortable when traveling for business.
Create a List of Objectives
Before you even start planning your trip, create a list of objectives that you want to accomplish. Oftentimes, businesspeople travel for one specific reason.
For example, you might be interested in attending a meeting with an international partner or attending an industry conference.
Even in cases where you have a single high-level objective, you can document secondary objectives. For example, you might be interested in learning something specific, meeting new people, or marketing.
The more specific and granular your goals are, the more likely you’ll be to achieve them.
Get Electronic Travel Authorization
Thanks to advancing digital technology and the visa waiver program (VWP), it’s possible to get electronic authorization to visit certain countries.
Rather than going through the traditional process of applying for a visa.
For example, with a UK electronic travel authorization (UK ETA), all you’ll need to do is fill out an electronic application.
If all goes well, you could be approved automatically.
In 2023, the UK ETA will only be available to a handful of countries, but it’s going to make a full rollout in 2024.
Book Long in Advance
When booking flights and hotels, try to book as early as possible. This will give you a wider range of options to choose from and take some of the pressure of planning off.
It’s also a great way to score discounts on your flights.
If you want to get even more value from this strategy, consider booking flights that take off early in the morning.
Take Advantage of TSA Pre-Checks
TSA PreCheck is a service that allows you to bypass the typically long lines of the TSA. The vast majority of TSA PreCheck passengers end up waiting 5 minutes or less.
It’s less than $100 for 5 years of membership, so even if you’re only going to use this benefit a few times, it should more than pay for itself.
Too many business travelers pack in an uncoordinated or inefficient way. It’s important to pack as lightly as possible.
You’ll save money, carry less weight, and ultimately have a more convenient experience.
Pack only the essentials, try to fit everything in a single suitcase if you can.
Be prepared to buy some extras at your destination if you end up needing them.
Utilize Reward Programs
Take advantage of reward programs whenever they’re available. You can get even more value out of these reward programs by remaining loyal to one hotel chain or airline.
Once you accumulate enough points, you’ll be able to cash them in for free upgrades, premium services, and other bonuses.
The process of accumulating points isn’t especially fun or rewarding but cashing them in can give you a taste of luxury in an otherwise boring trip.
Experiment to Find Your Zen
Travel isn’t always comfortable, but different people respond to different types of strategies for mitigating discomfort.
For example, some people can sleep with nothing more than a neck pillow and blindfold. While others prefer noise-canceling headphones and productive tasks to stay busy during the trip.
Experiment with different arrangements and accessories to find what works best for you in various situations.
Save All Relevant Information (with backups)
Make it a point to save all relevant information for your trip in multiple locations. These days, booking online makes it convenient and easy to find your itinerary information in one place.
But what happens if you lose internet access? Or if you get locked out of your account?
You should always have hard copies and offline copies, just in case.
Stay Hydrated and Fed
Did you know that even a 1 percent drop in your hydration levels can lead to a significant decline in cognitive performance?
Going just a few hours without water can begin to affect your problem-solving abilities, your mood, your memory, and your productivity.
While traveling, it’s distressingly common for businesspeople to go many hours without food or water, so have a plan to prevent this outcome.
Bring a water bottle and some extra snacks to keep with you at all times.
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Spend Time Networking
Always take some time to network, even if it’s not one of the primary objectives of the trip. Meeting new people is fun and rewarding.
It might end up helping your career in unexpected ways. Especially if you’re willing to follow up and maintain those connections.
The Road to Better Travel
Business travel may never be perfectly pleasant. Though it can be much more comfortable and streamlined, thanks to these tips and strategies.
With a bit of practice and experience, you’ll feel much more confident about your future business trips.
Do you have any other travel business hacks?
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Nancy Polanco is a freelance journalist, lifestyle content creator, and editor of Whispered Inspirations. She is a proud Mom to Gabby and Michaela and partner and best friend to Darasak. Having worked as part of a health care team for almost a decade, Nancy is happy to be back to her passion. She is a contributor to the Huffington Post, TODAY’s Parents, and an Oprah Magazine Brand Ambassador.