How Should I Prepare to Travel for Business?

Shannon Kietzman

When preparing to travel for business, there are several things you should do to ensure that your travel plans go off without a hitch and that things do not fall apart back at the office. Aside from normal travel planning, such as confirming tickets, times, and reservations, there are additional things to consider when preparing to travel for business.

Business travelers should ensure the appropriate reservations have been made.
Business travelers should ensure the appropriate reservations have been made.

If you are going to travel for business, you need to make sure things run smoothly in the office while you are away. Therefore, it is important to notify any other supervisors and your employees that you will be gone. Make sure others have a way to contact you while you are away in case an important need arises in the office. This includes providing your cell phone number, as well as the phone number of where you will be staying. If you have an agenda prepared ahead of time when you travel for business, make sure your contact at the office has this information as well.

A laptop computer is convenient for travelling.
A laptop computer is convenient for travelling.

Since most businesses depend on communication through email, you also need to have someone monitor your email when you travel for business. If this is not an option, set up your email to automatically respond with a message informing the sender that you will be temporarily out of the office. This email should notify the sender as to what days you will be gone and when you should be able to respond to the email. If you are aware that certain email communications will not be able to wait until you return, you should also take a laptop computer with you when you travel for business. If this is the case, you need to make sure the hotel you stay in has Internet access so you can log on and check your emails.

When you prepare to travel for business, it is also best to leave yourself a little wiggle room when it comes to time. Planes have a tendency to be late, and meetings often run over. If you do not provide yourself with plenty of time to accommodate such unforeseen circumstances when you travel for business, you may find yourself feeling quite stressed when deadlines are not met and you are unable to stay on schedule.

Flight delays should be considered when preparing for business travel.
Flight delays should be considered when preparing for business travel.

Discussion Comments


I always make sure to get as much as possible completed at work and at home before I go out of town to travel for business. Fortunately, in my job I am able to do some things in advance, so I get ahead in a way. This means I don't have to stress about all the things I have to do once I return home.

If you truly look for them, there are tasks you can do ahead of time before you leave on a trip. One thing I do is return all calls and reschedule meeting so I get them out of the way before I leave. There is always something I can do to make my transition easier once I return from the trip.


During the fall and in the early winter, I am traveling almost every week for work. When I first got this job, the travel was one of the parts of the job that I liked most. I was able to visit places I probably wouldn't have visited otherwise, and I like staying in the hotels and getting away from the normal routine. In the beginning, I would be out of town for two or three days and then I would be home with my family for the weekends.

I travel less now. When I have to travel for business all I think about is how big of a headache I'm going to come back to after the work trip. The way our office is set up, when I travel I basically have two jobs instead of one and I am expected to get everything done without extra pay or additional help whether I am in the office all week or on the road, so I would much rather stay in the office. The job hasn't changed very much, I think I am just getting older and more set in my ways.

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