June 30, 2013

Travel Tips

Here are my top tips to keep your Joie du Travail mindset while jet-setting around the world:

Pack Snacks. Pre-washed, pre-cut, finger-friendly food. Berries, grapes, carrot sticks, hummus and pitas, granola bites, nuts, cheese cubes, apple slices, whatever*. Throw them in a tupperware with a napkin and you're ready to go. You'll be so happy to munch away on good food while the masses around you suffer through Sbarro or Mandarin Express. *Exception: bananas... they do not travel well and nobody wants to dive into a brown one.

Download the App. Say goodbye to standing in line at customer service. I cannot tell you how many times the Fly Delta app has saved me in a pinch. You can use it to upgrade your seat, find and book other flights when yours is delayed, search old itineraries, book a last-minute hotel, you name it. In addition to Delta, I highly recommend Kayak, Southwest, Hilton Honors, TripAdvisor and XE Currency apps.

Do Yourself a Solid. Solid shampoos, conditioners and detergents save space and sanity when traveling through security with a carry-on. For travel-friendly, non-liquid body care products, I recommend Lush and I cannot live without Wash and Stain bars from The Laundress. You'll never come back to a hotel room that smells like your morning workout clothes again!  Speaking of which...

You Really Should Work Out. Hotel gyms ain't what they used to be. In fact, I am constantly amazed at how nice some are compared to the gym I actually pay for at home. There is nothing worse than sitting in meetings all day, eating out for most meals and returning back to the hotel late at night feeling like a tired old slug. Even 20 or 30 minutes in the morning will give you energy and a positive outlook for the rest of the day. Traveling is taxing - so don't expect to set a PR - but putting on your sneakers will break up an otherwise monotonous schedule and leave you feeling positive. Bonus: You'll be glad you packed tennis shoes when stuck in the airport and want to take a concourse walk instead of watching the same CNN loop for hours.

Photograph Receipts. It is hard to keep up with those pesky crumpled slips of paper. Take a quick photo of your receipt with your phone right when you receive it. It takes 30 seconds and can save you so much hassle on the phone with Finance when you get back.

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