Traveling for business is very different than traveling for pleasure. Although you can get some work done on vacation, and you can do some relaxing on a business trip, it’s important to make the most of your time away from home if your reason for traveling is work.
Unfortunately, travel isn’t always conducive to getting more work done, which means you could return home with an overwhelming pile of work to complete when you get home.
Don’t get stuck pulling an all-nighter when you finally get home! Use these tips to help you be as productive as possible when you’re traveling for business.
The less you have to worry about when you’re traveling for business, the better. That means spending less time fussing over your luggage and more time fussing over that project with a looming deadline.
Traveling light can save you a lot of headaches. The fewer bags you have, the fewer bags you have to lug around. You’ll save money on checking your bags with the airport, and you’re less likely to forget something in your room when it’s time to leave when you only bring essential items.
It also means not worrying about your bags if you land early or are leaving late. If your travels take you to New York City, for example, look for luggage storage in NYC. The Big Apple has convenient locations where you can store your bags, as do many other large cities in the United States.
Book a Nonstop Flight
There is a big difference between a nonstop flight and a direct flight. If you want to spend less time on the plane and more time in the office, book a nonstop flight.
Although you won’t have to get off the plane and catch a connecting flight with a direct flight, you may still have to make a pitstop while other passengers get on and off the plane. When you choose a nonstop flight, your plane won’t touch down again until you make it to your final destination.
Bring the Right Technology to Get the Job Done
It’s important to pack light, but don’t make the mistake of packing a little too light. For example, you may be tempted to save some space in your bag by leaving your laptop behind. That can make doing even the most mundane tasks more time consuming.
For example, there are many tips to help you make checking email easier and more efficient, but one of the best is to avoid checking your email on your phone. Although it’s convenient, trying to reply to a message on a smartphone always takes longer than typing out the email with a keyboard. It’s even worse if you check your email and save your response for later. Then you’re effectively spending twice as much time on your email than you should! Just bring your laptop and deal with email as it comes.
Use the Airport Lounge
There’s often a good chunk of time before your plane takes off that you can utilize to get some work done. Unfortunately, the gate area can be very distracting. If you really want to focus on the work at hand, use the airport lounge instead.
If you purchased a first class or business class ticket, you automatically have access to the lounge. However, there are other ways to use the lounge too. Elite status with certain airlines will provide you with access to their lounges, as can using the right credit cards. You can also buy passes for the day if you don’t plan on using the lounges in the airport on a regular basis.
Work on Certain Projects at Certain Times
Some projects require a lot of focus. Others don’t. Make sure you think carefully about what projects you have to work on, and what the best times would be to work on them.
For example, working on a project that requires a lot of concentration in the airport can be a big challenge. Especially if you only have 20 minutes before your plane takes off. Instead, save smaller chunks of time for tasks that can be completed quickly, like answering emails. More involved projects can be completed in your hotel room.
Get a Good Night’s Sleep
Traveling often comes with at least a little sleep deprivation. You’re in an unfamiliar hotel room and spending long hours collaborating and mingling with other people. However, sleep deprivation can make your work suffer.
When you’re away on business, it’s important to prioritize sleep. Politely decline late nights out at the bar and instead find ways to get a full eight hours of sleep in your hotel room. A few tips include things like:
- Choose your hotel wisely and request the quietest room.
- Stay in the same hotel instead of switching hotels during your stay.
- Maintain your bedtime routine by taking a bath or reading a book.
- Use sleep aids like earplugs, eye masks, and a white noise machine.
Give Yourself a Break
Just because you have a lot of work to do, doesn’t mean you can get it all done. Rest is important to productivity when you’re at home, and it’s important while you’re away on business too.
Don’t make the mistake of thinking you can get just as much done while you’re traveling as you would in the office. Your days a lot more disjointed, and you may require a little bit more downtime to recuperate from all the new sights, sounds, and activities.
Go easy on yourself. Allow yourself to take breaks throughout the day, and rest when your body tells you that you need to rest. You’ll be able to focus better and do better work if you do.
For some, traveling for business is something that can’t be avoided. You can make sure it doesn’t throw a wrench in your productivity by following these tips to get as much work done as you can while you’re away from the office.