Whether you travel for pleasure or for business—no matter how often, how long or where you go—you know it can be stressful. There are so many things to remember, and along the way, there are so many things that are out of your control. Knowing you have everything you need and being prepared for common travel dilemmas will help you feel calm and allow you to do your best work once you get there. Use the following plan to make your next trip stress-free.
Visualize the trip ahead of time
The best way to ensure a successful trip is to think it through thoroughly and create a master list that can be revised and reused. Mentally walk through every aspect of your trip from getting to the airport, to the hotel, to meetings, to any social events and then back home again. Put your plan to paper and divide the list of things you need into four categories: clothing ensembles; grooming and beauty supplies; your traveling office supplies and presentation needs and items for travel days. You will have greater peace of mind and confidence if you’ve written down your plan and can then simply follow it.
Much of what you need for traveling can be pre-packed in ready-to-go bundles so all you do is put them in your suitcase before you go. If you’re a frequent flyer, keep those bundles in your suitcase or devote a place at home for travel supplies. Place all your travel documents in a file folder or large envelope. Collect travel supplies in a large basket as you think about them in the days before a trip. Likewise, start collecting and editing the clothing you’ll bring. Write these items on your master list and then create your ready-to-go travel bundles.
Although you may have access to office supplies at your destination, bringing a few essential supplies is not only convenient, it is also useful in case the place you are going doesn’t have what you need. Use a zippered pencil pouch or resealable plastic bag and assemble two or three pens and pencils, a few paper clips, sticky notes and anything else you’ll need.
In another bag or pouch, store your cords or cables for your laptop computer or other devices. Pack a wall and car charger for your phone. Write out your must-have office items on your master list.
Ready-to-go grooming and beauty
To make life easier, get travel-sized versions of your favorite toiletries.
Cull your makeup stash and decide what’s absolutely necessary. Purchase duplicates of these products if you’re a frequent flyer. It may seem extravagant to have two of the same things, but you’ll use them both, and not having to transfer makeup between different cases is a time-saver that makes the initial investment worthwhile. Smaller makeup brush sets are also available. Remember to bring only what you’ll use. Less is best. Make a list of those items, laminate it and keep it in your makeup travel bag.
In addition to any necessary prescription medicines, you may also want to bring a few first-aid items to treat headaches, allergies or congestion, cuts and upset stomachs. For minor medical needs, it is convenient to have a few things on hand.
At least a week prior to your trip, decide what you’ll wear. This gives you time to get clothes dry cleaned, if necessary. Consider what you’ll be doing and what the weather will be like. Look for clothes that are naturally wrinkle-free such as polyester and polyester blends, spandex, nylon, cotton and silk knits and superfine wool.
If you want to bring something you don’t normally wear, try it on to make sure it fits.
Limit workout clothes to one set and wash them out in the sink at night and hang to dry. Look for fabrics with wicking properties. In a large zippered travel envelope, store nightclothes, underwear and socks.
Planning keeps you from over packing. When possible, roll clothes instead of folding them. When you get to your hotel room, hang up your clothes to minimize wrinkling.
Ready-to-go travel day
Before your travel day arrives, make sure you have all your flight, hotel and car rental information on your phone, so it is handy when you arrive at the counter. Make sure you have your passport and credit card information in a secure place where you can get to it. Set your phone alarm to go off 24 hours before your flight departure so you can check in.
Gather any reading materials, projects or entertainment devices you want to have for the flight. Pack a light snack.
Once you get home, learn from what worked. Adjust your master list, replenish your supplies and get ready to do it again!
Traveling is often fraught with stress, so I’d understand if you’d like my help. Give me a call and I’ll have you travel-ready before your next flight lifts off.
Tehillah is a New York City based image consultant, closet editor and personal shopper and is available for private consultations. Call 929- 265-2156 or email [email protected]
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By Tehillah Blech Harris