Sponsored by IHG Business Advantage
A job that requires regular travel – for many people that’s a dream! But after you’ve spent two-thirds of the year on the road, as many business travelers do, you realize that without proper preparation, jet setting can very quickly become more of a nightmare than a dream come true.
George Clooney summed it up perfectly in Up in the Air: “The difference between having to check luggage and fitting everything into a carry-on is a week’s worth of time spent waiting in line.” As a frequent flier you very quickly establish an arsenal of hacks and tricks for navigating airports, landing elusive upgrades, and snagging the very first cab.
So if your life revolves around airport terminals and hotel suites, then this is the post for you. Training yourself to be a better business traveler with the following tips will mean saving on both money and time, becoming far more productive at work, and lessen the stress on both your body and your mind!
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#1 Get Served First by Ordering a Special Meal
By planning ahead and requesting a special meal (gluten free or vegetarian, for instance), you’ll be served yours first before everyone else.
You can throw your napkin down before the rest of the cabin has finished answering “chicken or fish”, and get to sleep before the full dinner service has even made it to your row.
#2 Download Your Airline’s App
Among the many, many travel apps which now exist to make your life as a business traveler easier, most airlines have invested serious dollars into developing their own.
This will mean real-time updates on gate changes and delays, and even paperless boarding at most airports. So don’t worry about kicking back in the lounge with a glass of wine and missing the boarding call – you’ll receive an update when it’s time to go straight to your phone.
You can also look into mobile apps like GateGuru which also provide weather reports, estimated security wait times, airport amenities, etc. It’s about avoiding the last-minute stress.
Airports may restrict the size of the liquids you can carry on, though I bet you’ve never stopped to think that what’s in the container doesn’t really matter.
You’ll find as long as it’s under 3.4 oz, you can generally carry on any kind of liquid, and that includes mini liquor bottles, too. Enjoy your own drink for free instead of paying over inflated rates in the lounge.
#4 Invest in a Worldwide Adapter
If you’ve had to travel throughout various countries on short notice you’ll understand the importance of having a worldwide adapter on hand. And it’s a brilliant investment for the ease of knowing you’re electronics are going to stay charged throughout your trip, regardless of the destination you’re in. A good international adapter will work in around 150 countries.
If you find you’ve landed and arrived at the hotel without one, make a beeline for the front desk and flash the receptionist that winning smile – a lot of the time they will have drawers full of international adapters that other travelers have forgotten in the room and left behind.
#5 Fly on a Boeing 767
Choosing a plane is often just as important a consideration as choosing a time and date for your flight. To maximize comfort, avoid flying on a puddle jumper whenever possible, and if deciding between similar flights and one is on a Boeing 767, go for the 767 every time. This plane has less middle seats than other air-crafts.
Sites like seatguru.com exist for scoping out up-to-date seating charts for every single flight, and these will offer insight into which rows don’t recline, which seats are too close to the bathroom, or whether you have the option of snagging any extra legroom.
#6 Avoid Long Cab Queues by Detouring to Departures
Once you’ve touched down, it’s then essentially a race to collect your luggage and make a beeline for the cab queue before you find yourself stuck in a massive line. These have been known to snake around arrivals for miles. Can you say New York City.
Though if you haven’t quite managed to beat the queue, quickly turn around and head up to departures. There’s no competition for cabs in the departure zone; people are getting dropped off, and you can simply jump in as they’re jumping out.
#7 Join a Rewards Club for Internet Which is Fast and Free!
One of the biggest frustrations of a business traveler is having to pay for internet and it’s still not fast enough. Obviously internet is important for everyone, though for business travellers it’s a required part of their job.
If you’re still paying for internet at your regular business hotels it’s worthwhile looking into rewards club memberships like IHG® Rewards Club; fast, reliable internet is included at any of the 4,900 IHG® hotels in the world!
And while signing up for the rewards club for internet perks, be sure to create a free IHG Business Advantage account at the same time – a free, easy to use and secure travel management system allowing you to manage, control and organise your company’s accommodation bookings and expenditure. Having one hotel business account makes the booking, payment and expenses process of accommodation much easier.