Improve your work travels with 5 useful pointers

Do you spend nearly as much time on planes as you do in the office? Then these 5 work travel tips are sure to help you out. We'll show you how to arrive feeling fresher and how to significantly reduce the toll that travel takes.

Improve your work travels with 5 useful pointers

1. Get a practical lightweight carrier

  • Though a leather briefcase looks dapper and professional, it's not the most practical piece of luggage when you have to walk several city blocks or a mile of airport corridors.
  • The conventional briefcase is heavy, and it's not designed to accommodate the items that a modern businessperson needs. Additionally, the weight imbalance it creates on your body will wreck your shoulders over time.
  • Instead, buy a bag that's designed to hold your laptop (including an envelope of padding), has pockets for your cell phone and chargers, and can accommodate a change of clothes and a file folder or two.
  • Make sure that your carrier is lightweight and has two backpack-style shoulder straps as well as a handle.

2. Carry on your laptop

  • Even if you don't think you'll need your laptop on your flight, putting it into your checked luggage is a bad idea. You not only increase the chances of it going astray, but baggage-handling systems have perfected laptop-smashing to a fine art.
  • It may add weight and bulk to your carry-on, but that inconvenience is nothing compared to the hassle of replacing your computer.

3. Change for a long flight

  • Aren't you tired of getting off of an airplane after several hours and realizing that your suit or blouse look like you've slept in them? The solution is to pack a pair of long, lightweight workout pants and a T-shirt in your carry-on luggage.
  • When you get on the plane, change into these informal clothes and put your dress clothes on a hanger. Near the end of the flight, change back again. Your clothes will look crisp and clean.

4. Tame your receipts

  • Visit an office supply store and buy a small organizer "wallet" about the size of a legal envelope. Make sure that you choose one with several dividers inside. Make this a staple in your luggage for organizing business receipts.
  • During the day, stuff all receipts for business-related expenses into the same place, such as your jacket pocket. Then, every night at your hotel, put the day's receipts into the compartments within the organizer, sorted by the categories required by your employer. At the end of your trip, filling out your expense sheet will be a breeze.

5. Equip yourself with wrinkle spray

  • Hotels are more than willing to charge an arm and a leg for dry-cleaning service to revive suitcase-squashed clothing. However, there's a relatively new product called wrinkle-release spray that's an inexpensive solution to hotel laundering.
  • You just hang up your clothing, spray it, smooth out the wrinkles with your hands, and let it air-dry.
  • Several brands are available, and can usually be found in the laundry products section.
  • You can even try making your own by mixing 15 millilitres (one tablespoon) of fabric softener and 50 millilitres (1/4 cup) of unscented rubbing alcohol with 250 millilitres (one cup) of distilled water. Put the mixture into a travel spray bottle and gently mist the garment about a hand's length away.

Travelling really is what you make of it. Even if you're travelling for business, it can still be a fun opportunity to visit a new city and experience a change of scenery. These tips will make it easier to get the most out of your trip and reduce stress and hassle.

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