Summer is here which means it’s vacation time. Some folks travel for business year-round and you may be traveling to a great marketing conference! (You ARE planning to attend Rocks Digital, right?) Being prepared is essential for many business people so they can work while they travel.
How to Work While You Travel
1. Delegate tasks ahead of time
You may plan on working while you travel, but the more you can clear up before you go, the better chance you have of being able to do those last-minute essential tasks that always seem to come up when it’s least convenient.
Be sure to delegate well ahead of time, so you can answer questions before you go. This will save you having to try to explain something while juggling bags at the airport.
If you routinely work with others, figure out what will need to be done while you’re traveling and give people the “heads up” beforehand.
2. Use your phone to help you
Take a picture of your hotel room number
Take a picture of your itinerary
Save important information somewhere like Dropbox so you can access it from anywhere (great when you can’t fire up your laptop but still need some key info!)
3. The right gear is important
Get a “Grid-It” – this handy device is a simple concept – it’s an organizer for cords and gadgets. And once you have it loaded, take a picture of it. Then, when you pack up, look at the picture and your Grid-it to be sure you have all your cords and gadgets!
Get some “Found in Town” tags – These are tags (small stickers) you put on each device or item and anyone that finds that item if you lose it can send you an anonymous email to get it back to you. You can get a free set ($1.75 shipping, but seriously, it could save you a ton of money and stress).
Pack at LEAST one backup charging source for your phone. Because finding outlets, especially in airports, can be a challenge (don’t forget the cord).
A plug with USB ports – handy if you can find an outlet and have USB devices that need charging (but you don’t want to/can’t drag out your laptop).
4. Carry-on essentials
Something to munch on, even if it’s just an energy bar or a snack bag full of trail mix. How many times have you been delayed when going somewhere and not been certain how much time you have before you’ll be moving again?
Earplugs/headphones – Catch up on rest or simply discourage a chatty seatmate. Also handy also for not having to listen to the seemingly inevitable crying child at full volume.
Non-electronic entertainment/project – for times when you don’t have an outlet handy /can’t use electronic devices.
Paper and a pen. In this electronic age, these things can be forgotten. But having the ability to jot a note can be a lifesaver.
5. Do your research
Use Yelp or TripAdvisor to help you plan places (other than the often overpriced hotel restaurant) to eat.
Check to see if your credit card company has a “travel notice” provision to avoid having your card frozen for “suspicious activity” while traveling.
Research whether your bank has ATMs in the city you are traveling to, you can save yourself fees from using other ATMs by knowing in advance.
Map routes from the airport to where you’re staying. This can help you avoid racking up high taxi fares.
Most importantly, enjoy your travels, whether for work or for leisure. Don’t forget your business cards for networking opportunities and maybe plan a coffee date with that internet friend who lives in your destination city.