A few weeks ago I asked you to send in your best travel tips – and well loads of you did! Thank you, thank you! I knew you had some great tricks up your sleeves! Here are your business travel tips…
Sign yourself and your boss up for “Tripit Pro” travel App. It is an invaluable tool – I introduced it to my boss and several other colleagues too when I started in my new role here recently and they love it – so much so that our company are rolling its use out to our European offices. Main features and benefits include:
- Mobile alerts re. flight status – receive text alerts if the flight is delayed or boarding gate changes
- Alternative flight options if planned flight is cancelled
- Automated trip sharing ability – great for group/team travel
- A single dashboard view of all travel – PA’s can see at a glance all travel plans made for their executive(s)
- Add details of meetings, maps, hotel bookings, details directions … the benefits are seemingly endless.
- Essentially you can send your boss off with a paperless itinerary as everything can be viewed on their phone via the App – no more lugging around extra papers when travelling.
I can’t recommend it enough and have encouraged my friends and husband to sign up too.
If your executive is travelling in coach and prefers aisle seating, select the seat that allows his/her dominant hand to be on the aisle-side. For those that still like to write (or highlight items from their reading material), this position provides more arm and elbow room.
Creating an itinerary for even the short trips allows me to stay on top of flight times, hotel locations and meeting details. Reading it, writing it and reviewing it gives me three touch points and helps me remember so I can provide info instantly.
Enter all travel details at appropriate times in his/her Outlook calendar, if used. Set a reminder several hours ahead of flights, and be sure to select the correct time zones involved.
Before even checking prices or availability, check for any major sporting events / religious festivals / global conferences that may be happening over your Executive’s dates at the destination so that they can either change their travel dates or be fully aware of anything likely to have a significant impact on transport, opening times, accessibility, atmosphere, eating / drinking etc. during their stay.
Our staff travel all over the world – thinking about safety abroad for you or for your Executive:
- Do a Risk Assessment for the country that you are travelling to including political, cultural, religion and social climate. Use the UK Government Foreigh Travel website (the Suzy Lamplugh Trust is very good as well for personal safety)
- Write a comprehensive itinerary so that people at work and home know where you are
- Check in at agreed points on your travel through an e-mail or text. Make sure those who are waiting for a call know what to do if this does not happen
- Check vaccinations are up to date; pills and potions are taken with you. Remember spare glasses if you cannot live without them. Basic first aid kit, cleansing wipes
- Copies of paperwork e.g. insurance, health documentation; passport and to be kept separately in case originals are lost. An emergency card with condensed information is useful, particularly if there is no signal on your phone.
- Have an emergency plan as to where you would go or what you would do in an emergency e.g. can you use your credit card to buy things, book tickets to get you out the country quickly
- Make sure your phone and laptop are charged at all times – If you do not feel right in a situation, then go with your gut feeling.
Train ticket alerts
Sign up for a ticket alert reminder (I use Trainline – in the UK). They email you when advanced tickets are available to purchase 12 weeks before your journey, which means great savings for being organised and planning ahead!
Communicating with locals
Produce a card of useful phrases to assist your Executive/Manager when overseas, especially instructions for taxi drivers.
Technology can be unreliable especially in far-flung places. Include a list of essential contact numbers with their travel documents.
USA ESTA Applications
A recent update from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office has advised that from the 1st April 2016, all travellers wishing to enter the U.S. under the Visa Waiver Programme will need to hold a passport with an integrated chip (Electronic Passport).
Book the Thistle Hotel at Terminal 5 Heathrow for the night before your Exec’s flight. The stay includes cheap car parking for up to 8 days AND direct access to the Heathrow pods for terminal transfer. Smooth travel arrangements equals happy executive.
I want more tips
This is an ongoing series of blog posts so I’m going to ask for your next load of tips straight away. The next topic is…Managing your boss’s diary. Please do use the contact form below to send over your top tip!
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If you do book business travel for your Executive’s and organisation you would get so much out of our up coming Assist Travel event in London on the 9th September. The conference is packed full of useful content and only costs £100+VAT.