Business travel is a tiring ordeal for many people—whether it’s dealing with different time zones, crappy hotels and work. As many hospitality and travel companies within the $1.3 trillion industry are trying to improve the experience—focusing on mobile functions and customization in 2019 according to Jeff Berk, CEO of Tripkicks—travelers have more options to “make business trips suck less.” So what are some simple yet practical ways to get a head start? I reached out to several industry insiders to find out.
Bring a pre-charged phone charger
As someone who often travels for business, I know how important my mobile charger is. Since calls and emails can drain batteries very quickly, my advice for road warriors would be to keep a portable USB charger handy. I prefer something easy to pack like the Anker PowerCore+ mini, which is slightly larger than a regular Chapstick but adds six hours to a phone’s battery life. Another great option is the Mophie Juice Pack—a powerful charger that doubles as a phone case.
—David Bueno, General Manager of The Jefferson in Washington, DC
Maximize hotel rewards
For business executives who frequent the same cities or the same hotel brands, take advantage of hotel reward cards for significant savings and discounts. For example, the Bettoja Club Card provides a 20% discount on the car park ‘Garage Mediterraneo,’ a welcome drink at Hotel Mediterraneo’s Roof Garden, and a free stay for the second person from Friday to Sunday, among other benefits.
—Daniela Baldelli, Director of Sales & Marketing at Bettoja Hotels Collection in Rome
Bring family along
There’s often extra stress associated with staying away from home, which is why when “business travelers bring their family along, they avoid the distraction of missing loved ones and focus better during meetings.” However, traveling with loved ones can be stressful, so look for family-friendly hotels such as The DAYTONA that have “abundant recreation opportunities and proximity to local attractions.”
—Michael Melendez, General Manager of The DAYTONA in Daytona Beach, Florida
Stay to the left
Whether it’s the airport, bus terminal or train station, traveling involves constant maneuvering around other people. Because the majority of travelers are right-handed, we tend to favor the right in general. So when confronted with moving walkways, lines or check-in desks, keep to the left and see where it gets you.
—Beth Gibson, Experiential Travel Expert of Avis Car Rental
Talk to HR
Raise issues of archaic policies to your HR team to allow for more choice and humanity in your business travels. A great way to begin the conversation is through the use of benchmarking. Companies want to remain competitive, and if they’re falling too far behind, they need to hear it from their employees. Travel Management professionals have access to The Association for Corporate Travel Executives(ACTE) and the Global Business Travel Association(GBTA), which focus on educating and communicating new trends plus standards across companies. Generally, talk to your fellow business travelers and see what their business trips are like!
—Jeff Berk, CEO of Tripkicks
Make the most of travel resources
There are so many companies and platforms geared for better business travel; use them! For instance, “companies like Freebird take some of the pain out of flight cancellations,” offering a mobile solution for business travelers to quickly book a new ticket after any cancellation, delay or missed connection.
And at Tripkicks, we value business travelers who are willing to make cost-saving choices, so we reward them with part of their savings. To stay up to date with the best travel apps and resources, check out the occasional ‘10 best travel apps’ blog posts, but there’s no substitute for talking to your globetrotting friends!
—Jeff Berk, CEO of Tripkicks
Embrace the bleisure (business and leisure) trend by taking excursions. They come in different forms and lengths, ranging from a two-hour Ayurvedic treatment in India to a full-day relaxation experience in an exclusive property in Morocco. The idea is to disconnect from the stresses of business travel, really switch off and explore a new destination. If you want to immerse into a unique culture and lifestyle, it’s worth investing in a travel planner that can tailor your itinerary around your preferences and time constraints.
—Marta Tucci, Co-Founder of Naya Traveler
7 Practical Tips To Make Business Travel More Bearable – Forbes