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10 Essentials you Should Always Have on a Business Trip

Published: 07/02/2018 - Filed under: Home » News »

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Being a professional or an entrepreneur may mean that you have to travel from time to time depending on the nature of your work. Traveling can often be exciting. However, it can also take a toll on you physically and mentally. Jet lag, long-haul flights, lonely hotel rooms, and not getting to spend as much time as you would like with friends and family are a few of the sacrifices that success sometimes requires. However, on the brighter side, it’s an opportunity to network with different people in your industry, acquire new business, and close deals. The last thing you want when going through the motions of a business trip is to realize you’ve left some of your essentials behind. Below are ten essentials that you should make sure you have with you when going on your next business trip.

Travel Insurance 

There are several reasons that you should consider getting travel insurance when going on a business trip. These reasons include medical emergencies, your airline going bankrupt, bad weather, flight delays, and trip cancellation or interruption coverage. If you happened to lose valuable items or they’re stolen, then travel insurance would also cover that as well. You might be apprehensive about getting insurance as you would feel at a loss if you don’t end up paying for it and don’t need it. When it comes to valuables, however, it might be better to be safe than sorry. It would also be unfortunate if, for instance, you needed to move or cancel your flight because of a canceled meeting and you had to end up paying extra charges or losing your ticket altogether.

Legal Documents  

Depending on what exactly you’re traveling for, you may need to carry your legal documents along. If you’re going to close a deal, sign a contract or negotiate an agreement, then it’s important that you bring all of the necessary documents with you. To be on the safe side, try and have both hard and soft copies available. You should remember that if the purpose of your business trip is to negotiate a contract or sign new business, it is important to have a lawyer present. Most law firms consist of corporate lawyers as well as Child Custody, Divorce Law, Family Lawyers and various specialized areas. Do your research and find out the best law firm for your needs and ensure once you choose one, they’re always present at important business trips.

Business Cards 

Business cards and a business trip should be somewhat inseparable, after all, you never know who you’ll meet on your trip and who might be in need of your services. Business cards can make you seem more professional as they usually have all of your contact details in one place. Swapping contact information digitally can seem impersonal. However, a face-to-face meeting with a business card swap is still said to be an effective direct marketing tool. Some other reasons to carry business cards along are they are the first impression of your brand; a well-made one will continue to be circulated which equates to further marketing for you and having some can make you seem both organized and prepared. Don’t forget to put them in a casing so that they’re kept clean and wrinkle free as well.

Your Laptop 

Regardless of what the purpose of your trip is, you should always try and bring your laptop along. You never know whether you might end up needing to do an impromptu presentation or have to whip up a quick report. Although smartphones are highly advanced in this day and age, it is often better to carry out tasks like this on a laptop. Not only will you have a wider screen to work on, but most of your important files and information are likely to be on there as well. At the end of the day, you can’t really go wrong bringing your laptop along, and it is a work trip, so why not? 

Suitable Clothing 

Clothing is said to have a significant effect on the level of success that you’re able to achieve. Apparently, research shows that the way you appear significantly influences other people's perceptions regarding things such as how much authority you have, how financially successful you are, your level of trustworthiness, how intelligent you are, and your suitability for hire or progression within a company. On these premises, it is imperative that you make it your priority to pick suitable clothing for where you’re going. Even if it’s a casual business affair, always try and take a suit or two along with you just in case a formal event crops up. Also, have it in the back of your mind that a business trip can always be extended, so plan for probable scenarios by bringing along an extra shirt or two, as well as an extra pair of trousers. 

Good Shoes

Similar to clothing, a good pair of shoes are a great way to make a good impression. Presenting yourself in a neat and tidy manner just shows that you took extra time to organize yourself and get ready. These kind of attributes are usually attractive to prospective business partners or clients. They’re also said to be extremely important in creating the right impression in work environments. You should, therefore, consider investing in and bringing two good and quality pairs of shoes along with you on your trip.  

A USB 

It isn’t uncommon that on a business trip, you might need to transfer documents. In an instance where you’re unable to access the internet, a USB still serves its purpose. By having one at hand, you’ll easily be able to exchange documents with a client, prospective client or business partner. Ensure you try and save all important documents such as presentations, pitches, brochures, and leaflets on it and keep it in an easily accessible but safe place.

Backup Devices

Statistics taken in 2016 found that nineteen percent of Canadian respondents use at least three connected devices. It could be because they simply love gadgets, however, in relation to a business trip, having more than one technological device can serve its purpose. For instance, no matter how heavily reliant we are on technology, we should always remember that it sometimes fails. Therefore, having two or three alternative forms of technology that can connect to the internet and give you access to important information can be a saving grace. It could be in the form of a tablet, extra laptop or a spare cell phone. These will come in handy just in case your phone suddenly decides it doesn’t want to turn on or your laptop decides your trip is the perfect time to malfunction. If all else fails, have a good old piece of pen and paper at hand, and you should be fine for the most part.

Extra Chargers 

Phone chargers aren’t always the most reliable things, and often, they are easy to lose. The last thing you would want is to be stuck in a foreign country without a charger and have to do a wild goose chase to find another one. Not only could this throw your entire trip off balance, but it’s stress and a distraction that you don’t need. Try and have at least two chargers with you on your trip and keep them in a safe place. This way, if one breaks or gets lost you have another one at hand. Additionally, try and fix all faults with your phone such as bad batteries before traveling. Your cell phone is your primary source of communication in this day and age, so you can’t afford to be on a business trip and not have access to it. If you happen to have a spare one, you could consider carrying that along as well. 

Adapter 

Sometimes, the charging points you find in hotel rooms don’t match those of your devices. For instance, in America, they use completely different charging points than they do in the UK.  It is, therefore, in your best interest, to find out the charging point they use and buy an adapter if it’s different from the one your devices use. You can do a Google search or call the hotel and ask just to be sure. Sometimes hotels have adapters if you ask at reception, but it may not be worth taking the risk. Also, consider buying a single multi-charger so that you can plug all of your devices in one place. Some stores happen to have adapters that contain multiple charging points for different countries. It may be worth investing in one as well so that no matter where you go, you have the adapter you need. 

Traveling on business can be a frequent occurrence when you’re on the road paved with success. It can be pleasurable, but it can also be stressful, as work can sometimes be. You, therefore, don’t want to use your time away stressing about things that you forgot or left behind. Hopefully, the next time you plan on traveling for business, you’ll take a look at this list of essentials and as a result, have a seamless and successful trip. 

Ross Atkinson

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