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Dealing With 'Travel For Business'
10 WAYS TO HANDLE "TRAVELLING FOR BUSINESS"
Looking for better ways to make your business travels a little more pleasant? Well, look no more! Here are our top ten suggestions on how to deal with the stress of travelling for business. Don't let your travels be a chore, here's how you can get more!
1. PACK LIGHT
Average business trips usually last for only about three or four days, at the most. Which means, it does not make sense to haul bulk luggage across the globe, after all, they only cause delays and complicate immigration. A compact and good-quality carry-on case, packed light, will help you glide through customs in no time - even get straight to the meeting. Bonus points, it compels you to pack only essential items such as business cards, laptop, shaving set/makeup kit, formal attire, undergarments, etc.
2. TRAVEL MANAGEMENT
Get a reliable Travel Manager – an expert who knows what you need in order to arrive at and leave a foreign country. They can also keep you up-to-date with your Passport, your Visa, and any other authorisations required for each country. This helps you avoid any potential paperwork mishaps which typically comes in dealing with immigration. Even better, ensure that they are in tune with various mobile applications that make your trip more organised and seamless, thus giving you a world of convenience with everything right at your fingertips.
3. MEDICAL COVERAGE
Try not to expose yourself to any medical hazards. You can do this by arming yourself with knowledge of the current health conditions of the country you are travelling to and having a firm understanding of the type of insurance and medical coverage provided by your company. This is particularly necessary when travelling to countries like the US, where the price of medical treatment would cost you an arm and a leg. Bonus points: the policy for worldwide business travel is, in most cases, tax deductible.
4. REST & RELAXATION
If health education in science textbooks have taught us anything, it's that, rest and relaxation are crucial in the chaotic world of business. If you are travelling business class, you probably will have access to lounge areas where you can get some rest, walk around in peace, shower, and decent food and drinks. Even if you are not travelling business class fares, some lounge areas can still be accessed for a small fee which can be reimbursed at your company. This can help you reduce the stress of flying and getting jetlagged.
5. TIME ZONE
So your time zone is completely different from the country where you are travelling to. This can cause turmoil with your body clock if you can't find a way to reset it immediately and turn you into zombie-mode, which is not impressive at meetings. To deal with this, try to sleep in the night time of that country's time zone before taking off, or even during the flight. If you're travelling economy class, use earplugs, noise-cancelling headphones and a small glass of wine might help. If not, then convince your company to opt for business class fare for faraway trips.
6. BODY CALISTHENICS
If your body is starting to ache, you can try doing some basic yoga and calisthenics in your seat, though, try not to knock off other passengers and aircraft crew while doing so. You don't want to come off as boisterous and inconsiderate of others around. Or, you can simply stand up and walk around the plane for a bit, stretching your back, neck, legs and arms every so often. Understand that you will be regularly interrupted. Also, stay hydrated at all times as lack of humidity in the cabin air can lead to dehydration, which then leads to fatigue.
7. DEVELOP RELATIONSHIPS
Another key to convenience is to build healthy relationships with your car hire companies, hotels you're staying at, restaurants you dine in, and airlines you frequent - even if your Travel Manager has other suggestions. This is particularly useful for business travellers as there are chances you might have to travel to the same country or area again. Bonus points, there are chances of earning loyalty programs, discounts and frequent flyer options. Familiarity goes a long way in making your experience worthwhile.
8. OPEN EXERCISES
Yes, we've already mentioned body calesthenics, which is helpful during flight or when you have to jump directly to a meeting upon landing. But besides that, you can also make time to sweat it out in a hotel gym, do some laps around the pool or a park nearby. If you have time, just before your trip, quickly comb through your agenda and look for open time slots which will allow you spare time for exercising, meal and rest with no disruptions. This will no doubt enhance your overall productivity.
9. CUSTOMS & MANNERS
Wherever you go, you will directly or indirectly be representing your company, yourself, and even your country. Plenty of first-time business travellers do not pay attention to cultural differences and customary business practices at their destinations. Lack of knowledge just makes you seem disrespectful and ignorant; potentially causing a huge impact on your outcome and productivity. Take time to get to know the local laws, be courteous and respectful at all times; but when in doubt, ask a local or someone in that office.
10. FOOD & WATER
Watch what you eat! Street food may seem tempting and smell great, but where you come from, and the food you were used to back home, are you sure your digestive system can take the sudden change? This is especially true if you are travelling to most Asian countries. If you were on vacation then go ahead and dig in, experience everything, but you are here for work purposes — why risk it now? Also, it's a good idea to stick to bottled water at all times.
Keep in mind that these suggestions are more applicable to first-time business travellers. As the frequency of travel increases, it also becomes more complex because business travellers will not have time to look into every detail, not to mention cancelled flights, wrong hotel bookings, car hire goof-ups, and more. In these cases, we advise that a business traveller rely on a professional travel manager who will make the trip less burdensome; and you can focus on the objectives of your business.
Infographic on "10 Ways To Deal With Travelling For Business"
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