Business travel might seem glamorous from the outside, but those business professionals who regularly travel, can confirm that traveling for business is very stressful. According to CWT Travel Solutions Group, there are three main stress categories for business travelers: lost time, unforeseen events, and new routines.
Time will inevitably be lost when traveling. It is nearly impossible to get everything marked off your to-do list from an airport lounge or better yet, 39,000 feet. The stress of the work you will need to do when you return from the trip can make business travel unpleasant for some.
Anything can happen during a day of travel. Lost luggage, a delayed flight, or a missed connection could completely ruin a business trip. With so many looming negative possibilities, it is no wonder that business travelers feel stressed.
Humans are creatures of habit. Traveling typically means changing your eating habits, finding a new time to exercise, and potentially altering your sleeping patterns. Knowing that you will have to change so many familiar routines while away on business creates stress before the plane even takes off.
Within these three stressor categories are four main triggers for stress: lost baggage, poor or no internet connection, flying coach on long flights, and flight delays. Anyone of these four stress triggers would cause stress for someone traveling for leisure, but when you need to travel to be successful at work, the pressure and stress increase tenfold.
The following six strategies can help to reduce stress for business travelers.
Plan for what you need to bring, as well as what work you will be able to get done at the airport or on the plane. This might involve checking the weather for your destination, researching airports’ wifi policies, and creating your own checklist.
Create an itinerary that limits stress
Whenever possible, book direct flights. If this option is not available, avoid booking flights with close connections. Double check that the airports and hotels you have booked are the best options for your preferences and schedule.
Packing carry-on bags only, means eliminating the stress from lost or delayed luggage, and less time spent waiting in lines at the airport. To successfully pack in a carry-on bag for business, keep your wardrobe simple and interchangeable. Frequent business travelers benefit from compiling a travel-size pack of toiletries used exclusively for travel.
The more comfortable you feel, the less likely you are to be overcome with stress. If you must report to a meeting immediately after your arrival, use the airport lounge or restroom to change and freshen up after your flight.
Adhere to your normal routines
Don’t neglect your normal sleeping, eating, or exercise routines just because you are on the go! Getting enough rest, proper nutrition and hydration, and moving around will help reduce stress, and make your return home simple and stress-free.
File expense reports immediately
Become familiar with your company’s expense policy before you travel to avoid out-of-pocket costs. Be sure to keep receipts from your trip in a safe place, so that you can file an expense report immediately after returning to the office.
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