In some professions, you just have to hop on a random plane every once in a while. Whether it’s for a conference or a business meeting, it can be stressful to have to travel on a moment’s notice. Equally, you don’t want to keep a packed suitcase around “just in case,” but there are some items you really ought to keep handy if you’re going to travel suddenly.
Books, a laptop with a DVD drive and some DVDs, your Kindle, an mp3 player. It’s generally my policy to have a minimum of three unread paper books and at least a handful more on my Kindle at all times. I’ll choose what to bring when the moment comes. Alternatively, keep a little fund. You can buy some magazines or a game for a handheld console on your way to the airport or train station and keep yourself busy during the trip and, later, during free time. This time is important in terms of providing you with an opportunity to relax and unwind, so be sure you have something soothing to do.
Of course you want to use your clothes when you’re at home, but having a travel set is not a bad plan. First of all, it prevents you from forgetting pyjamas and having designated underwear and socks (make sure you get extras for unforeseen situations) means you won’t be caught short. But keeping a suit or smart outfit in a suitcase is not the worst plan ever. During business trips you often find yourself needing to make a good impression, and wearing nearly-new clothing is a big step towards accomplishing that. Just ensure you don’t wear the same clothes every single time you meet a foreign client!
Phone and laptop chargers
Let’s face it – you’re probably not going to forget your laptop or your phone. But if I could count the number of times my husband has phoned me from some far-away city and asked me if I could see his phone charger… Basically, there is no harm in buying a spare set and keeping it in your suitcase. You’ll always be comfortable knowing you have what you need to get the job done.
A pre-paid travel credit card
You can buy pre-paid travel credit cards which are accepted at any establishment that takes Visa. Get one and top it up periodically; this prevents you from needing to mess around with foreign currencies and you have a back-up in case you lose a receipt you need to hand in to claim your expenses.
Passport and other travel documents
Rooting around for your passport is a frightening experience. You just never know whether you put it where it belongs or accidentally deposited it in the pocket of an identity thief. You don’t have to keep this in a suitcase specifically, but always put it back in the same place so you can find it within minutes. It will cut down the stress immeasurably!
Getting things ready is the most stressful part of the impromptu business trip. If your job requires you to travel on a regular basis, make it your business to be prepared at all times. It will cut down on packing time and it will allow you to stay relaxed and ready to succeed.