Travelling for business is stressful enough. Looming deadlines, important meetings, missed family commitments, lack of sleep, flight layovers, strange food and the risk of a travel bug are some of the joys the corporate traveller encounters. While it can be an exhilarating adventure, it often comes with its fair share of disruptions and hiccups.
Not all travellers are seasoned and know the ropes, so we’ve put together a Travel Tips checklist you can share with your new-comers or those who don’t travel often:
- Plan Ahead – Research your destination: its culture, language, local customs, and any travel advisories or local news feeds. Understanding local transportation options, safety concerns, and the availability of services can help you confidently navigate your destination regardless of what has been booked on your behalf. Familiarise yourself with essential phrases in the local language to facilitate communication.
- Get your paperwork in order – In addition to your passport and visas – don’t forget essential documents, travel vouchers, travel insurance, vaccinations and medical scripts. Keep backup copies of important documents, both physical and digital. This includes passport copies, travel insurance details, and reservations.
- Pack Smart – Pack versatile clothing that can be mixed and matched and check the weather at your destination. Pack only what you truly need. Overpacking can lead to extra baggage fees, inconvenience, and the risk of losing valuable items. The less you carry, the easier it is to move around. If flying, ensure your on-board luggage contains a change of clothing, essential medication, basic toiletry, and first aid items you usually use.
- Know your key contacts – Ensure you have contact numbers for your travel booker, company after-hours contacts, embassies, service providers and local authorities. Share your itinerary with friends or family members so someone knows your whereabouts.
- Tap into technology – There is no limit to how much easier technology has made the travel experience. Leverage it to your advantage! Utilise travel apps for navigation, translation, weather forecasts, travel alerts, currency exchange rates, itineraries, and bookings. Having offline maps and important documents stored digitally can be a lifesaver in emergencies. Don’t forget backup power banks in case of power failures.
- Prioritise health – It’s your responsibility to attend to your health and well-being while travelling. Stay hydrated, get enough rest, and follow any precautions for your destination, such as water quality alerts, vaccination requirements, special medications, and safety instructions. Carry a basic first-aid kit with essentials like pain relievers, bandages, and antiseptic wipes. Make sure you have appropriate travel insurance cover for medical assistance and lost luggage.
- Manage your money – Carry a mix of cash and cards, and let your bank know your are leaving the country to avoid any potential issues with transactions abroad. If possible – have an emergency fund separate from your regular spending money.
- Secure your valuables – Invest in a good-quality travel wallet or pouch to keep your passport, money, and important documents safe. Consider using anti-theft bags or backpacks with built-in security features like locking zippers and RFID-blocking technology.
- Stay Calm and be flexible – Travel disruptions are inevitable, but how you react makes a big difference. You simply cannot control some things, so stay calm and be flexible when faced with delays, changes or travel interruptions.