The process of traveling isn't always a pleasant experience, but it's made a little bit easier when you know you're headed to an exotic island for a relaxing vacation. Traveling for business, however, is an entirely different situation. Not only are you constantly working when you're traveling for business, but you're probably on a tight time schedule and can't afford to experience the hiccups that typically come with travel. If you're new to business travel, following these four tips can help your trip go smoothly and turn you into an expert traveler.
1. Seek out rewards for frequent travel. Being loyal to one particular airline will pay off because it allows you to rack up frequent flier miles, which can be used on future business trips. Loyalty will also give you access to preferred customer status perks and special upgrades. If you only want to commit to the airline with the cheapest prices instead of one specific airline, consider getting a travel rewards credit card that will get you all the same perks that being a loyal customer will.
2. Apply for global entry status. Global entry status is a program from the U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency that allows specific travelers to go through customs quicker than others. All you need to do to become a member is apply online, and appear for an in-person interview to determine that you're eligible for the special status. Most U.S. airports have global entry kiosks that allow for quick processing, and many international airports have dedicated lines in their customs area for global entry members to ensure that they get through customs quickly.
3. Take an airport shuttle. Time is of the essence when you're traveling for business, and taking an airport shuttle, such as Yellow Cab, is the best way to ensure your trip from the airport to your destination is as short as possible. Drivers of airport shuttles know the local roads like the back of their hand, and they also know all the alternative routes to take in case there's traffic. Most airport shuttle services also charge a flat fee for travel, so you don't have to worry about drivers taking the long route in an effort to charge you more money.
4. Know your flight terminology. When you book a flight, you probably see the terms "non-stop" and "direct" quite often. While these might seem like synonyms for each other, they actually indicate differences in the type of flight. Just because a flight is direct doesn't mean it won't stop, it just means there are no layovers where you switch planes; choosing a non-stop flight is the only way to ensure there are no layovers or stops.
Business trips are stressful all on their own, but following these tips can help you take the stress out of traveling and help keep your focus on your work.