13 travel hacks to make your next work trip stress-free

7. Pre-order meals

If you don’t mind eating veggie, consider pre-ordering your meals before you leave, as a ‘special meal’ will invariably mean you will be served first. This means you can relax/go to sleep while everyone else is still being served their food. 

AT THE AIRPORT

8. Spotting the ‘right’ security queue

The shortest line isn’t always the fastest. Try and check out the efficiency of the personnel manning the line and the mix of travellers ahead of you, such as families with small children. Pick right and you could literally save weeks of queuing over a business lifetime. 

9. Get your ZZZs in 

Transcontinental and transatlantic flights don’t always provide enough hours to get a full night’s sleep. Maximize the amount of snooze you get by eating before you get on the plane. You can even brush your teeth and get into some comfortable sleep gear before boarding so you can ‘hit the hay’ as soon as you’ve buckled up. But bear in mind that the best way to beat jet leg is to sleep as if you are in the time zone you’re due to arrive in. 

ON THE PLANE

10. Have an on-boarding bag

Don’t be one of those people who wait to get on the plane before rummaging in their bags to extract the items they don’t want to put in the overhead bins (holding everyone else up in the aisle in the meantime). Instead, keep all those items you will want during the flight in a small separate bag that you can easily extract as soon as you board. An outside pocket of your suitcase is great for this.

ON THE TRIP

11. Be app happy

One of the biggest headaches of business travel is keeping a record of and claiming expenses as well as keeping on top of boarding cards and schedules. There are plenty of apps that can help which let you track any kind of expense as well as billable time and mileage too. Expense reports needn’t be taxing.

12. Record room and parking numbers

If you’re on the road and constantly changing hotels it can get a little confusing trying to remember the number of the room you’re staying in. Take a quick photo of your door or your car parking space on your phone as soon as you arrive. The Booking Now app for Apple Watch remembers your room number information too, so all you need to do is glance at your wrist. 

13. Enjoy the journey

If you feel like all you ever see of a new country is the airport, the road to your hotel and the meeting room you need to get to it’s time to try and do a little bit of forward planning.

Could you arrive a little earlier to enjoy a weekend stop over? Could a colleague recommend a local restaurant or café near your hotel that will give you at least a little flavour of the country that you are visiting? 

A little bit of planning in advance will reward you richly.

Gillian Tans is COO/President of Booking.com.

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