20 Business Travel Hacks to Make Your Next Trip Super Successful
Experienced road warriors know that advanced prep makes their trips run smoother, cost less, be entirely more enjoyable, and more successful. Throwing your kit in a bag last minute rarely makes for a good trip, and result in lots of little annoyances that will chip away at your good mood and cost you valuable time. Here are 20 business travel hacks to help you become a better traveler.
- Before you book your trip, delete the cookies from your browser or use an incognito window, as some airlines and booking sites will show higher fares when you come back to the site.
- Pack yourself a little travel kit containing Tylenol, Band-aids, a toothbrush and toothpaste, floss, spare phone charging cords, and other little essentials that are a pain in the butt to search out in a new city. Keep it in your suitcase/ travel bag so you don’t ever have to worry about forgetting these things.
- Invest in an external battery pack (or two) to charge your phone on the go, because you can’t always find a spare socket in transit, and you don’t want to be caught short once you arrive at your destination.
- Put copies of your important travel docs in a Dropbox file or other cloud-based system so that should you, horror of horrors, lose them you’re more easily able to get replacements.
- If you travel to the US, get a Nexus Card that will enable you to breeze through security and skip long line-ups. The cost is $50 for five years, and pays for itself the first time you don’t spend an hour waiting to get through JFK, or back into Toronto.
- Workout your outfits in advance of the trip. By knowing exactly what you need, and choosing double-duty items wherever possible, you’ll pack less. Also, you won’t be stuck with a bag of stuff that doesn’t actually go together that well because you still spilled ketchup over a key piece on the way there.
- Download podcasts or movies/ TV on to your phone so that if your plane doesn’t have wifi or even an entertainment system you aren’t bored silly (or stuck talking to your seat-mate, which admittedly isn’t always bad). Netflix and other streaming services now allow you to download content onto your device to watch when you’re offline, so you can watch your favourite shows wherever, whenever.
- Pros only take carry-on. This speeds you up going through airports, and minimizes the risk of your losing anything important. Invest in decent carry-on luggage and pack wisely, you’ll soon realize how little you actually need to take with you.
- Expect flight delays, and have what you need to maximize the time you’ll be stuck in an airport. If you don’t have lounge access, go sit somewhere civilized like a restaurant or bar (airport hotel bars are great for this) and plough through your work instead or hanging with the herd at the gate.
- Pack smart by using packing cubes, which are available everywhere these days. These little mesh bags compress your clothes and keep everything smartly organized in your case. You’ll fit more in, and know where stuff is without having to get everything out to find fresh socks or undies.
- Do a little research before you go, and find one amazing restaurant/ brewery/ running route that’ll make your trip memorable and help you feel like you actually visited that destination. When you only ever see the inside of conference rooms and meeting venues, business travel fast becomes a chore.
- Sign up for every loyalty program you can, as these often give perks such as free wifi, and collecting points when traveling for work can mean you get free rooms/ flights etc for your next vacation.
- Take healthy snacks with you. Often the stuff you can buy at airports or onboard is super salty and greasy, which can leave you feeling gross. Plus, who doesn’t resent paying $3 for a mini-box of Pringles? If you arrive at your destination in the middle of the night, you won’t need to go to bed hungry. (Note: All our suites have a box of goodies ready and waiting for you when you check-in, so not an issue when you stay with us!)
- Consider extending business trips by a day in order to explore a destination, play a round of golf, head to a spa or whatever. Downtime is vital, and will recharge you before you head back to the office.
- Have the right bag for your work trips. Upgrade your luggage to a decent but smart backpack with padded laptop space and all the pockets and compartments you need. Make sure your carry-on has wheels (bags with skateboard style wheels are best) to get you from gate to gate fast and without breaking your back.
- Pick morning flights, as these are less likely to be delayed (the plane is already at that airport waiting to go, there’s no schedule backup to deal with etc).
- If you travel often through major hub airports get a credit card that offers you lounge access, or pay to subscribe to a lounge access package. Getting stuck somewhere between flights or when there are delays is infinitely more bearable when you have all-you-can eat snacks and booze. Plus lounges have power outlets a plenty, desk space, showers, and other perks that’ll make your life better.
- Schedule time for exercise, whether that be hitting the hotel treadmill, going for a long walk, or attending a local fitness class. Frequent travel can be brutal on your body, so taking care of yourself matters.
- Stick an envelope or ziplock in your bag to keep all your expense receipts together.
- If your flight gets cancelled, don’t wait in line with everyone else to talk to a customer service rep. Call the airline directly, as you’ll often get faster help and they’ll be able to do as much for you as those harassed staff on the ground.
When your work trips take you to Winnipeg or Calgary, staying in one of our luxurious suites will make every trip a positive experience (and feel like one of the ultimate business travel hacks). Contact us to see how we can meet your needs.