7 tips for getting more out of business travel

The best-laid plans of mice and men often go astray. With the sage words of Scottish poet Robert Burns in mind, Blacklane is here to offer you seven tips to ensure you get the most out of your business travel.

Man with suitcase in soft lighting

1. Book your ground transportation in advance

You’re in an unfamiliar town for business and the last thing you will want to worry about is how you’re getting from point A to point B. Blacklane is ever-present to help resolve this issue. Booking your ground transportation in advance means you can afford to concentrate on the more important matters at hand.  We give you a reliable and comfortable transport service, ensuring you arrive where you need to be, refreshed and ready. This peace of mind gives you the clarity you’ll need to ensure you get the most out of your business trip. Deal with the minutiae well in advance.

2. Dress to impress, but also for the occasion

You’ll never get a second chance to make a good first impression, and nowhere are first impressions more important than in the world of business. It can take less than a minute for someone to form their opinion of you. With this in mind, it’s a good idea to vamp up the charm and style if you’re hoping for a positive impression. Dressing to match the occasion is the aim of the game – but it’s rarely as simple as turning up suited and booted to every occasion. Overdressing is as much a sartorial sin as underdressing. If you’ve turned up to an informal tête-à-tête in a trendy cafe wearing a tuxedo you’ll likely do more harm than good.

3. Investigate your destination

Getting to know the customs and culture of the city you’re going to visit may seem like an obvious point to make, but it’s an important one to remember. Particularly if you’re planning to meet delegates from said city. It’s unlikely a minor faux pas is going to torpedo any business relationship you’re attempting to establish with local parties but going out of your way to pick up a couple of small phrases is likely to be appreciated and stand you in good stead. It also pays ahead to make sure you’re clear on the laws and customs of the city you’re touching down in. In no country on earth is ignorance an excuse for illegal behavior, and what may seem normal in one society is by no means tolerated in another.

4. Ensure you’re in town well rested

There’s little point in being on time for a meeting and dressed for the occasion if you’re falling asleep during your appointments. Getting in plenty of rest is a healthy habit you should have. But when long-distance flights and crossing time zones come into play it can be easy to drop the ball. If you have the time, try and arrive a couple of days in advance of anything particularly important. Giving your body at least 48 hours to adjust to its new surroundings and schedule is imperative. A comfortable flight and appropriate accommodation let you get the hours of sleep you’ll need to be on your game. Steer clear of party hostels and budget airlines – sometimes it pays off to pay a little extra.

5. Eat well and eat wisely

If you’re in town for an important business meeting, it isn’t the time or the place to get adventurous with what you put in your body. Ordering the hottest thing on the menu might not seem like such a good idea while you’re sitting in a meeting the next day. Delhi belly and Montezuma’s revenge are just two of the more well-known examples. Well-intentioned travelers are struck down by cuisines they are not accustomed to all year round, so make sure you’re not among them. Stick to what you know and give your body what it needs to relax and concentrate on the tasks at hand.

6. Make sure you relax before you head off

Finding time to relax before you head away is important. Particularly if you’re hoping to achieve anything worthwhile during the important two or three-day window of your business trip. Make sure you’ve booked a flight that will leave and arrive at a reasonable hour that suits you – even if it costs a little more than the cheapest option. Organising as much in advance as possible is always advisable. But don’t leave everything to the last minute. If you’re arriving for your outbound flight stressed then there isn’t much going to change that over the next hours and days. The evening before you head out should be a calm one. Enjoy a good meal and aim to get an hour or two more sleep than you usually would. Don’t be shy at breakfast, either.

7. Find some time in the city to enjoy yourself

You’re in town for business, you have your game face on and it’s time to get serious. But don’t be afraid to live a little. Take the time to actually enjoy the city you’re in – you might not get a chance to revisit at some point in the future. Business can take you to some interesting places. If you see nothing but your hotel room and the inside of a conference hall you may as well be anywhere else on Earth. Take some time before your journey to investigate your destination. Plan some time for some genuine cultural enrichment – find what interests you, and make some space to see it.