The Road to Smooth Business Travel – By Trisha Lyn Fawver

by Colleen on May 22, 2012

Travel is an adventure, even when the purpose is business and not pleasure. According to the Research and Innovation Technology Administration’s 2011-2012 National Household Travel Survey, Americans total more than 405 million long-distance business trips per year.

Some hate traveling for business while others merely tolerate this necessary evil. Others, like me, actually enjoy it. How, you ask? I make the most of my business induced opportunities to travel by following some basic edicts that make being away from home smooth sailing for me, and conducive to taking care of business.

Plan Ahead

Booking your travel necessities like flights and hotel accommodations at the last minute will only cause stress and increase your expenses with high rates. Try to book your flights and hotel at least one month in advance to get the prime rate. You can use tools like Bing’s Price Predictor to monitor trends in flight prices and gain advice on when to book for the best rate. If you’re attending a special event, like a conference, and wish to take advantage of a group rate in the hotel, book as soon as possible. Remember that, should your plans change, you can always cancel the hotel at a later date. Having clear and precise travel plans will reduce any stress associated with travelling and will allow you to focus on the business you have to do, whether that’s attending a conference, setting up meetings, or preparing an important presentation.

Keep Comfortable

Sometimes the cheapest option is not always the best option. Invest in travel methods, hotels, and accessories that won’t leave you ragged at the end of a long day. Multiple connections on a flight might cost less, but will extend your travel time and leave you exhausted upon arrival. A simple motel might save a few dollars, but a hard bed and bad night’s sleep can cause you to be unfocused on the tasks at hand the next day. Limit connections and book comfortable hotels to reduce your travel-induced stress. Invest in a comfortable pair of dress shoes, a fluffy travel pillow, and whatever else you need to keep calm and carry on. The more at home you make yourself while travelling, the more you can focus on the work you’re there to do and not the problems with your accommodations or amenities.

Be Prepared

There are some basic items that any traveler should not be without. One should be prepared for unexpected scenarios, especially when traveling somewhere you’re unfamiliar with. Remember to pack things like lip balm, throat lozenges, preferred remedies for headaches or body aches, a small sewing kit, a small first aid kit, gum for the plane, and maybe even some snacks if you’re going somewhere more remote. If you have a preferred water bottle you like carrying around, you should also bring that, though disposable bottled water might be more practical when traveling. Remember these tips, and traveling for business will be less stressful than a meeting with the boss!

Trisha Lyn Fawver is the Client Services Manager at For Me To Coupon.

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