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If you are traveling to a client on your first work trip, the experience can be a little bit nerve wracking. Hopefully you are traveling with other team members, or at least meeting some other people there. When you are traveling for work for the first time, there are a few things that you’ll want to keep in mind.
Don’t check a bag
If you are traveling for one week or less, you should not need more than a carry-on suitcase and your laptop bag. Especially if you are traveling with coworkers, they will not want to wait for you by the luggage carousel to get your bags. When traveling, you will normally head straight off the plane towards a taxi or rental car.
Bring extra clothes
Bring at least one set of extra work clothes, in the event that you spill something on one of your outfits or your flight gets canceled and you have to stay another night. Always assume that the dress code is business professional, unless you are told otherwise. Bring casual clothes for the evenings. Depending on who you work with, sometimes you may go straight to dinner while other times you will go back to the hotel to change. A pair of jeans and a few extra shirts will make your stay more comfortable.
Check the weather
Many times I have traveled and I did not bring the right coat for the week. Check the weather for the city you are traveling to for your first work trip, and see if you need to bring a different sized coat or an umbrella.
Use a credit card for expenses
If you know you will be traveling for work, get a credit card as soon as possible. You will be buying food, transportation, and hotels that your company will reimburse you for. You do not want to use your own money – especially if you are just starting out, you will find the hotels that you stay in to be ridiculously expensive. Your company should reimburse you before your credit card statement is due, so you never have to use your own money. You also get points, and your credit card will protect you from fraud.
Save contact info to your phone
It helps to have all of your coworkers phone numbers saved, in the event that you need to contact them while traveling. You should also write down the name and contact information of your client contact, and keep it in a readily accessible place such as a notepad or a note on your phone. Write down the address of your hotel, and the address of your client. It takes time to open up and search through your email quickly, so have important details handy.
Good luck on your first work trip! Have you been traveling for a while? Leave other tips that you have in the comments below.