Travel Hacks For Business Trips 

Photo Credit: Getty

Getty

When people ask where I live, I often (half) joke by saying, “On United Airlines.”  It’s pretty sad that I actually know when the flight attendants cut their hair, and even more embarrassing when the crew serenades you on the airplane when you reach the three-million mile mark. At The Female Quotient, we multitask on steroids, and believe that trust and relationships happen with in-person interactions. That means we fly as often as we drive.  I’ve been known to have breakfast in Paris, lunch in New York and have been home for dinner with my family in Los Angeles.

 August is when many of us are mapping out our fall business trips, and also heading to the airports to soak up the last of our summer vacation days. To help make your travels easier and more enjoyable, I’ve collected the best travel tips from frequent travelers in The FQ pack. Here is our collective advice.

Travel Hack #1: Never Check Luggage

One of the most important things for packing, in my opinion, is to bring only a carryon. I have the perfect Mary Poppins suitcase so no matter how many days I’m on the road, I never check bags. This means I don’t have to worry about lost luggage, damaged luggage or waiting for luggage.

To make everything fit, the first thing I do is put my shoes into pouches and then lie them flat at the bottom of my suitcase, using fillers such as socks, bras and underwear to create a flat surface and to ensure that every inch of space is maximized. I have a bag of travel toiletries that I always keep packed so I don’t have to think about it. I place a plastic dry cleaning bag over my clothes to help avoid wrinkles. I always wear tennis shoes so they don’t take space in my luggage, as well as a sweater or wrap to protect against the inevitable freezing airplane AC.

Travel Hack #2: Use Apps To Help You Know Before You Go

If you want to make travel more convenient, there’s an app for that. “You need to know the gate, terminal, weather and traffic,” says Caryn Seidman Becker, CEO of CLEAR, a secure identity platform that uses your eyes and fingertips to get you through security faster. “I use the Dark Sky app because it shows hour-by-hour weather and precipitation. You don’t want to get off the airplane without an umbrella or not know that you might be delayed due to storms. You can then move on to finding your terminal and gate with Flight Board, a flight status tracker app.” Lastly, she uses Waze to help know how long it will take to get to the airport with real-time traffic updates. 

Travel Hack #3: Pack Snacks (Healthy Snacks Are Always a Better Option)

I pack RXBARs (blueberry is a favorite), and a little chocolate never hurts.

“For some reason travel always makes me hungry and usually at off-schedule times,” says Katy Loria, chief revenue officer at Screenvision Media. “Airports have gotten so much better in terms of finding healthy snacks, but I keep individual servings of Trader Joe’s trail mix in my bag.”

Seidman Becker always carries almonds and dried mango so she isn’t at the mercy of the airport vendors.

Travel Hack #4: Make Flying Time You Time

I never do work on airplanes. Rather, I use it as my ‘unplug’  time to catch up on TV shows, whether it’s “Top Chef” or “Million Dollar Listing.”

Take the time in the air to do what makes you feel good. “I bring my 'To Read' folder to sort through on the plane,” says Seidman Becker. “I feel better once I land as I can toss many of the papers and feel lighter.”

Travel Hack #5: Switch To The Local Time Zone

Lucky for me, I’m time zone agnostic, meaning I don’t get jet lag. Part of my secret is that I follow the time zone I’m going to. For example, I’ll go to sleep on the plane when it’s bedtime at my destination even if it’s day time where I’m coming from. And I never take naps once I’ve landed.

Travel Hack #6: Create Space to Explore

Don’t forget to take time for you once you land. “When you’re traveling for work, be sure to try and do at least one thing for you that’s unique to the city,” says Christine Martino, executive vice president of national ad sales at Screenvision Media. “Take in a site, do a 30-minute walk in the park, or just get your feet in the sand. Something that will make you pause, breathe and appreciate being somewhere other than home.” An unexpected place to find local things to do is in the Discover part of Snapchat by following Magic Spots, which lists some of the best places around the world.

Some of my friends say going out for a jog is also a good way to see more of the place you’re visiting. “I always bring my sneakers when I travel and go for a run (or two!),” says Rebecca Minkoff, cofounder and creative director at Rebecca Minkoff. “It’s an easy way to explore and get your workout in. Plus the views are always better than inside the gym walls!”

Travel Hack #7: Embrace Travel

Travel can be stressful, but it can also be beautiful. Don’t let the negative parts of travel, such as delays, stress you out. Instead think about the positive aspects, such as getting to see and experience different cultures and meet interesting people. When my flights are delayed, I smile knowing I can watch one more show in my binge-watching moment.

Being a leader who travels can also empower your team. “Travel forces me to multi-task even more and manage teams from afar, thus evolving my communication style to also empower others to make decisions in my absence and keep things moving,” says Minkoff.  “We can’t be everywhere at once, so it is key to make sure you have a solid foundation with your team.”

Travel can also remind you that you are a badass. “I feel a sense of independence and empowerment when I travel,” says Loria. “In my career, I’ve always been fortunate to be surrounded by strong female leaders, but I find business travel to be very male-dominated. I often travel solo, and it’s always a good reminder for me that, ‘Hey, I got this.’”

So...book that flight,  grab your suitcase and start collecting some frequent flier miles. A great trip is just a flight away! Please share your travel hacks with me @shelleyzalis.

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Photo Credit: Getty

Getty

When people ask where I live, I often (half) joke by saying, “On United Airlines.”  It’s pretty sad that I actually know when the flight attendants cut their hair, and even more embarrassing when the crew serenades you on the airplane when you reach the three-million mile mark. At The Female Quotient, we multitask on steroids, and believe that trust and relationships happen with in-person interactions. That means we fly as often as we drive.  I’ve been known to have breakfast in Paris, lunch in New York and have been home for dinner with my family in Los Angeles.

 August is when many of us are mapping out our fall business trips, and also heading to the airports to soak up the last of our summer vacation days. To help make your travels easier and more enjoyable, I’ve collected the best travel tips from frequent travelers in The FQ pack. Here is our collective advice.

Travel Hack #1: Never Check Luggage

One of the most important things for packing, in my opinion, is to bring only a carryon. I have the perfect Mary Poppins suitcase so no matter how many days I’m on the road, I never check bags. This means I don’t have to worry about lost luggage, damaged luggage or waiting for luggage.

To make everything fit, the first thing I do is put my shoes into pouches and then lie them flat at the bottom of my suitcase, using fillers such as socks, bras and underwear to create a flat surface and to ensure that every inch of space is maximized. I have a bag of travel toiletries that I always keep packed so I don’t have to think about it. I place a plastic dry cleaning bag over my clothes to help avoid wrinkles. I always wear tennis shoes so they don’t take space in my luggage, as well as a sweater or wrap to protect against the inevitable freezing airplane AC.

Travel Hack #2: Use Apps To Help You Know Before You Go

If you want to make travel more convenient, there’s an app for that. “You need to know the gate, terminal, weather and traffic,” says Caryn Seidman Becker, CEO of CLEAR, a secure identity platform that uses your eyes and fingertips to get you through security faster. “I use the Dark Sky app because it shows hour-by-hour weather and precipitation. You don’t want to get off the airplane without an umbrella or not know that you might be delayed due to storms. You can then move on to finding your terminal and gate with Flight Board, a flight status tracker app.” Lastly, she uses Waze to help know how long it will take to get to the airport with real-time traffic updates. 

Travel Hack #3: Pack Snacks (Healthy Snacks Are Always a Better Option)

I pack RXBARs (blueberry is a favorite), and a little chocolate never hurts.

“For some reason travel always makes me hungry and usually at off-schedule times,” says Katy Loria, chief revenue officer at Screenvision Media. “Airports have gotten so much better in terms of finding healthy snacks, but I keep individual servings of Trader Joe’s trail mix in my bag.”

Seidman Becker always carries almonds and dried mango so she isn’t at the mercy of the airport vendors.

Travel Hack #4: Make Flying Time You Time

I never do work on airplanes. Rather, I use it as my ‘unplug’  time to catch up on TV shows, whether it’s “Top Chef” or “Million Dollar Listing.”

Take the time in the air to do what makes you feel good. “I bring my 'To Read' folder to sort through on the plane,” says Seidman Becker. “I feel better once I land as I can toss many of the papers and feel lighter.”

Travel Hack #5: Switch To The Local Time Zone

Lucky for me, I’m time zone agnostic, meaning I don’t get jet lag. Part of my secret is that I follow the time zone I’m going to. For example, I’ll go to sleep on the plane when it’s bedtime at my destination even if it’s day time where I’m coming from. And I never take naps once I’ve landed.

Travel Hack #6: Create Space to Explore

Don’t forget to take time for you once you land. “When you’re traveling for work, be sure to try and do at least one thing for you that’s unique to the city,” says Christine Martino, executive vice president of national ad sales at Screenvision Media. “Take in a site, do a 30-minute walk in the park, or just get your feet in the sand. Something that will make you pause, breathe and appreciate being somewhere other than home.” An unexpected place to find local things to do is in the Discover part of Snapchat by following Magic Spots, which lists some of the best places around the world.

Some of my friends say going out for a jog is also a good way to see more of the place you’re visiting. “I always bring my sneakers when I travel and go for a run (or two!),” says Rebecca Minkoff, cofounder and creative director at Rebecca Minkoff. “It’s an easy way to explore and get your workout in. Plus the views are always better than inside the gym walls!”

Travel Hack #7: Embrace Travel

Travel can be stressful, but it can also be beautiful. Don’t let the negative parts of travel, such as delays, stress you out. Instead think about the positive aspects, such as getting to see and experience different cultures and meet interesting people. When my flights are delayed, I smile knowing I can watch one more show in my binge-watching moment.

Being a leader who travels can also empower your team. “Travel forces me to multi-task even more and manage teams from afar, thus evolving my communication style to also empower others to make decisions in my absence and keep things moving,” says Minkoff.  “We can’t be everywhere at once, so it is key to make sure you have a solid foundation with your team.”

Travel can also remind you that you are a badass. “I feel a sense of independence and empowerment when I travel,” says Loria. “In my career, I’ve always been fortunate to be surrounded by strong female leaders, but I find business travel to be very male-dominated. I often travel solo, and it’s always a good reminder for me that, ‘Hey, I got this.’”

So...book that flight,  grab your suitcase and start collecting some frequent flier miles. A great trip is just a flight away! Please share your travel hacks with me @shelleyzalis.

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Shelley Zalis, known as the “chief troublemaker,” is a pioneer for online research, movement leader, and champion of gender equality. She is an internationally renowned...