Are you someone who travels for your job? For people who stay at the office full time, the assumption of your business trips might be that you’re exploring new cities, trying new foods, and spending your days with a beach or mountain in your view. That assumption is wrong, unless you consider endless meetings, meals with clients, and catching up on work emails at the hotel during your “downtime” relaxing. Work trips are just that: work. If you’re looking at a calendar already chalked full of trips, check out our ideas for making your business travels feel more like vacation days.
Sample the local cuisine
Ever had a lobster roll on the East Coast or barbeque in the South? The locals have their favorite restaurants for a reason: they’re the best in the area. Ask your client where the best lunch/dinner spots are; they’ll probably be more than happy to share their personal favorites and recommend others to try while you’re in town.
Do some sight-seeing
One of the best things you can do for yourself after a long flight is to stretch your legs and get some fresh air. Stay up a little later or get up early for a run through the city; chances are that it’ll be peaceful and give you a personal look around. If you’ve rented a car, toss the map and take an afternoon drive. You can also check out the city’s guided bus tours. Not only will you get a view of the city, you’ll likely pick up some history too.
Catch up on your sleep
One of the best perks of traveling solo is a king-sized bed for one. Take advantage of not having the distractions from home to wake you: pets, kids, or a snoring spouse. Those 7-9 hours of uninterrupted sleep will leave you feeling refreshed and ready to contribute in meetings.
Extend the trip
You’re traveling on your company’s dime, so why not take advantage of the free flight and stay a few extra days? Of course your boss might frown if you try to expense dinner and hotel for the extra days, but if you can afford it, consider extending the trip to check out neighboring cities. If you have a spouse or friend tag along, even better! Use a vacation day or two and spend the extra time relaxing and exploring.
Try out the tips above on your next business trip; it’s likely you’ll have a heavy workload to greet you upon your return, but you’ll be refreshed and can approach it with a heightened sense of productivity.