Business travel takes you away from home and loved ones and can cause all sorts of unexpected issues. Some people may take it for granted, however I believe that planning a trip is vital whether for business or for pleasure especially if you travel alone.  I have had many business trip abroad alone or in a group and these time-tested tips can ease your journey.

1) Sleep smart

Dark circles under your eyes aren’t good for business. Many road warriors know that you can only use a certain amount of concealer to cover bags under your eyes to mask jet-lag or poor sleep nights in strange hotel rooms. So carry eye masks and earplugs. Wax earplugs are better than the little foam ones. They are often sold as a swimming accessory and work well to mute noise, snoring and annoyingly chatty airline passengers. Invest in a blow-up pillow to sleep soundly on planes. They also prevent your hair from being flattened as you sleep.

 2) Stay Hydrated for Healthy Travel

 While travelling, drink plenty of water to stay hydrated and feeling healthy. Corporate travellers should also try not  to skip meals while on the road to avoid headaches or fatigue. If your flight is delayed or has mechanical problems, you may spend hours on the runway or circling in the air while your stomach is screaming.  Airlines offer little more than the tiny, salty rations of peanuts or pretzels for short flights. Carry a nutritious and filling power bar and an apple in your bag.

 3) Prepare Travel Document

Take photocopies of your travel documents and, again, keep these separate to the originals. Ensure that you have the appropriate insurance for your trip.  Medical insurance should cover emergency evacuation. If it does not, you should consider supplementing your insurance.  Keep at least one credit card, some travellers’ checks or cash separately.

4) Pack a Briefcase Lightly

Pack the least amount of clothes and shoes you think you can survive on. If you need to be dressed in business attire for a meeting the same day you travel, wear it on the plane. You can wear the same mix-and-match outfits day after day. Leave room in your bag for the shopping treasures you can’t resist along the way.  What’s more, security lines may be faster without travelling with luggage. However, there are still a few things that one day business travellers should pack. Bring a book, iPod, iPad or other device to pass the time while waiting for a flight or between corporate meetings.

5) Take dark clothes and cut down on shoes

They don’t show stains, wrinkles or dirt, and work for most situations.  How many shoes does a business traveller pack? Not many, usually! If the shoe fits, wear it … don’t carry it. Wear the shoes you’ll need for business and pack one pair of trainers for walking, jogging or informal occasions.

6) Shop without guilt

Spend some money on yourself and buy presents and cards for your loved ones’ upcoming birthdays.

7) Communicate with home

If you are moving from place to place, leave a copy of your itinerary with a family member or friend. This will make it easier for your family to contact you in case of an emergency. Of course, you may have a mobile phone with you but services may not be as good as at home.

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