You may already be a veteran of business trips and have your routine down pat. This time you are being sent on an international business trip. It shouldn’t be much different than your average business trip out of state, though, right?
Well, in many ways your work travel experience will help you, but when you are outside of your country there are some barriers that you may not have taken into consideration.
To get the most out of the trip as far as staying efficient and also comfortable, you will have to make some adjustments and be ready for some things you may not have expected.
In this article, I will go over several things you will need to keep in mind if you want to have a successful and enjoyable business trip abroad.
1 – Have your electronic devices ready to go
We are all tied to our devices in our daily lives, but none more so than the business traveler. You need to stay connected to get the job done. Which means you need to pay close attention to how your devices will work while in another country.
For instance, to use things like your laptop, you’ll need to make sure that you have the right plug for the country where you will be working. Universal travel adapters will be your best friends when you are on the road. It would be nice if there was more consistency in the way people plug their electronics in, but it varies widely from country to country.
Another issue is going to be using your phone while outside of your provider’s location. If your work will pay for your data roaming internationally, then you can probably get away with just turning on roaming on your phone.
If not then make sure you can buy a local SIM card for your phone and pay the local rates. You can check to make sure your phone is unlocked to enable it to take other SIM cards. Or, you can buy an unlocked phone that you will use specifically when you are on international business trips if you do them frequently enough to justify the expense.
2 – Try to not drive
If you are in one of the Commonwealth countries in which they drive on the opposite side of the road, then this is going to be very challenging when trying to stay safe while driving.
Or, you may simply be unfamiliar with the local road rules combined with not knowing where you are going. This sounds like an accident waiting to happen. If there is Uber where you are going then it makes a lot of sense to use that service or a similar one when in an urban area.
If you need to leave the city, then take public transportation or hire a driver to get you around so you can have some peace of mind.
3 – Have travel insurance in place
Most of the time while you are traveling you will have a trip without any incidents at all. But, there is always the possibility that something will happen that dramatically affects your travel.
It could be getting into an accident, getting ill from the local food or even missed flights due to weather. In any case, it pays to have some good travel insurance for any kind of eventuality while you are on your work trip.
Don’t go for an umbrella policy as not all insurance is accepted everywhere. Do your research on policies that will cover you for specific events in your specific destination to make sure there are no surprises.
4 – Beat jet lag
Jet lag is often discounted when you are traveling internationally and crossing time zones. Yet, it can dramatically affect how well you are able to work effectively. If you are really tired and out of sorts it can not only mean you’re going to be uncomfortable, but it can also mean your work is not going to go well.
To beat jet lag, you need to resist the urge to take a nap when you get to the hotel. Get out in the sun as it is great at helping to reset your internal clock quickly. Go for a walk, or if there is a beach or balcony, sit out in a chair under the sun to absorb the rays and get into the local time.
Knowing these things ahead of time can really make a difference on your trip. And you will also be learning new things along the way so write down some of the lessons learned for next time.