Business trips that are usually considered boring, stressful, and wearisome by most seasoned business travelers tend to be even more stressful during this pandemic! As the countries worldwide are further relaxing COVID-19 related restrictions even as the cases continue to spike, it is necessary that corporate travelers be extra careful while undertaking business trips. If you are prepping for your upcoming work-related trip, here are some essential business travel tips that come in handy for you. Most of these travel hacks are also useful to every traveler, not just corporate travelers.
Important Business Travel Tips:
Basic safety guidelines:
As long as we are living with the coronavirus, these basic safety protocols that we have been following are our saviors whenever we step out of your home, be it for a daily commute or a business trip.
- Wash your hands regularly or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer to clean your hands every time you touch the commonly-touched surfaces at the airport, inside the plane, at the hotel (you are going to stay), and in the conference rooms where your meetings are scheduled. Or, use disinfectant wipes/sprays to sanitize the high-touch surfaces (armrest, headrest, air vent, seat belt, tray table, door handles, handrails, etc.) before you touch them. Never touch your face with unclean hands.
- Wear a face mask throughout the journey until you enter your sanitized hotel room. Pre-check the mask policy of the airlines and carry extra masks (adequate supply of PPE).
- Maintaining a safe distance of six feet from others might not always be possible when traveling, so keep as much distance as possible between you and others. Do not disregard the social distancing signage in public areas.
Keep tabs on COVID-related information of your destination city:
Many states are amending the travel restrictions depending on the COVID situation. So, one of the important business travel tips would be staying abreast of the information until the scheduled departure time for your business travel. Check the travel restrictions, COVID test certificate requirements, and quarantine rules being implemented at your destination city and avoid landing yourself in unexpected trouble. Also, keep tabs on the CDC’s travel recommendations and do not hesitate to reschedule your business travel, if required.
Go contactless wherever possible! Use an online reservation system, do a web check-in, avail the self-service check-in kiosks at the airports, and make online payments to avoid exchanging currency. Although it is hard to imagine a business trip without shaking hands, resist handshakes (unless both parties are using gloves) — this is one of the basic business travel tips every corporate traveler must follow!
You might be required to attend more than one meeting as a part of your business trip. A few of the business travel tips while attending meetings are:
- Confirming in advance that no COVID cases have been reported in the last 2-3 weeks at the location where your business meeting is going to take place.
- Wearing masks during the meeting
- Socially-distanced seating arrangement.
- Not sharing pens, papers, brochures, and other office material.
- Carrying your own water bottles.
Go for flexible bookings:
This is an unpredictable time, and we do not know how situations might turn. An important business travel tip many would suggest (besides buying business travel insurance) is to go for flexible bookings — flight tickets, hotel bookings, etc. This would facilitate hassle-free cancellation or rescheduling of your bookings in case of any changes to your business travel plans. Many airlines and hotels are now more flexible with their cancellation policies. Popular airlines such as American and United also waived change fees on overseas flights. Even most hotels are waiving change fees and rolling out no-charge cancellation and full refund policies in specific regions affected by government-imposed travel restrictions.
Sanitation practices as a criterion for booking hotels:
When you have to stay in a hotel during your business trip, pre-check (on the hotel website) their COVID-19 prevention procedures before booking one. Wash your hands immediately after checking-in, and follow the same basic guidelines as disinfecting surfaces like switches, doorknobs, remote controls, the alarm clock, etc. before touching them, or washing hands after touching these surfaces. If you have packed your own pillow and bed sheet, use your own bedding rather than the hotel room pillows and comforters.