Did you know that nearly 1.5 million business trips take place in the US daily? Whether people are headed to a domestic or international destination, these trips are both productive and fun.

If you’re headed off to a business meeting and staying in a hotel, there are some ways that you can make this exciting time even better. Read on for some tips on how to have a business trip that yields a high ROI (and to have a good time while doing it).

  1. Talk to Your Employer

Before heading off on your business trip, it’s important that you communicate with your employer.

What are the expectations that the company has of you while traveling? What are the specific objectives for the trip? What actionable steps can you take to meet these objectives?

Answering these questions can help you decide how to optimize your travel plans. For example, if you are expected to talk to a client early on Saturday morning, you can plan to fly in on Friday night rather than on Saturday. If your aim is to sell a specific product, you can prepare speeches and sales materials for that specific item.

  1. Talk to Colleagues

If you are going on a corporate trip with others, it’s important that you talk to them as well as your employers. Find out what their travel plans are. Ask if their expectations and objectives align with yours (or if they have different ones).

When you have this information, you can work together to come up with an itinerary that works for everyone. Some tasks will only require one person- others can plan downtime during that timeframe. Divide up tasks fairly and equally.

  1. Find Corporate Lodgings ASAP

Your company will likely have booked corporate lodging solutions for you and your team. If this is the case, make sure that you research the location of your hotel. You need to know how long it takes to get to and from the locations where you’ll be conducting work.

If you’re expected to find your own hotel and be reimbursed later, make sure that you begin this process early. Involve those that are going on the trip with you so that you can stay in the same place. This isn’t just for team building- it can help you save money on rides to and from locations.

  1. Book With Your Own Credit Card

Some companies will prohibit you from using personal cards to book flights, rooms, and meals. However, if this isn’t the case for you, charge as much of the trip as possible to your personal credit card. Make sure that you will be reimbursed later if you do this.

This is a good choice because you will get bonuses and rewards to your own personal card rather than the company’s. You might get cashback bonuses, gift cards, and frequent flyer miles depending on your card carrier. You can use these rewards to plan your next adventure more easily.

  1. Learn About Your Destination

Both domestic and foreign travelers should research where they’re going before their trip begins. The first thing to look at is the climate because it will inform you of what clothes to pack. If you’re going somewhere rainy, knowing that in advance could save you the need to buy an umbrella later.

You also will want to look at cultural norms in the place where you’re going.

Do you need to greet people in a specific way? Are there etiquette-related expectations when meeting people in places of business? In some countries, business meetings have unspoken rules regarding things as simple as how to hand people your business card.

Make sure that you also learn some of the language that people in your destination speak. Even if you’re meeting English-speaking colleagues and buyers, knowing the local language can help you navigate the area.

  1. Pack Light

We’ve all seen that one oddball on a weekend trip who carries 3 suitcases around with them. That person doesn’t just have more than they need. They paid to check unnecessary items and have to tote them around the city or town that they’re staying in.

Only pack what you need. Bring work essentials, a couple of days worth of clothes, a personal computer, toiletries, and a book. If you’re staying for longer than a few days, have 3-4 outfits and wash them in the hotel laundry facility.

This will save you time and money as well as the energy that you would spend dragging items around.

  1. Make the Most of Downtime

Sleep and relaxation are important so that you can bring your A-game to business ventures. You definitely need to make sure that you’re getting a full 8 hours of rest. However, when you have downtime during the day, make the most of it.

You’re in a new place with a lot to explore. Look up some of the most interesting local sites that you can spend an hour or two enjoying. While you probably won’t get the chance to do things that would take up a full day, you can still make the most of the time you have at your destination.

Organize the Perfect Business Trip Today

While finding corporate lodging and preparing speeches can be a challenge, business travel is simple as long as you plan the right way.

Now that you know some ways to prepare for your work trip before setting off, it’s time to get more ideas on how to be a better employee regardless of your location. Check out the business tab on our home page for more ideas on how to plan the most productive business trip possible.