You plan your business trip effectively; from airport transfers and the right hotels to stay at, to meeting locations and bringing the right team to deliver results. Packing your suitcase shouldn’t be any different. In fact, it should be the very foundation of any successful business expedition.
We all know time is money, so saving time packing, at the airport, or performing tedious tasks like ironing and laundry during a trip all contribute to a seamless tour. The following packing tips and tricks will help you maximise your most important commodity (time) and leave you free to focus on other vital areas of your business travels.
Don’t Check Luggage
This is where you’re going to save much of your time getting in and out of airports. If you don’t have to check luggage, it means you can roll right off the aircraft, through customs, and straight out of the airport. It also means you never having to contend with the hassle of lost luggage. Even if you’re travelling for more than a few days, you can fit everything that you need in a carry-on bag (as we outline below).
Own the right roll-aboard
So, if you’re going to fit everything in your carry-on luggage, you need to invest in the right roll-aboard. Most major airlines accept up to 10kgs of hand baggage with the dimensions of 22"x13"x9" in business class. In addition, these carriers also allow for a garment bag or handbag as well as a laptop bag (but every airline is different, please check prior departure). Some airlines, like Etihad, allow two bags of up to 12kgs in total.
Or, to make your travels an absolute breeze, opt for a Bluesmart suitcase. This is a carry-on bag that you can control from your phone via an app. Through this app, you can lock and unlock your suitcase, weigh it, track its location, and receive notification if you leave it behind. It also has an inbuilt battery that allows you to charge your phone six times over. It’s a smart bag, to go with your smart phone, to help you travel smart.
Check out other handy travelling gadgets here.
Two Suits, suits all
Packing just two suits should serve your business purposes – and that goes for both men and women. One can be worn during your flight with a casual top, which you can then change out of inflight for the comfortable pyjamas (if you’re travelling long-haul) that many leading airlines provide these days. Qatar Airways’ ‘lounge wear’, for instance, is supplied by high-end retail outfit, the White Company. The other suit can be packed.
Packing your suit
To minimise creases and wrinkles in your suit, turn the jacket inside out and wrap it around soft items like a T-shirt. This helps the jacket bend less and wrinkles less likely to set. To fold it; turn it face-down, fold in the sides and sleeves; fold the bottom of the trousers to half-way, then fold it again; place the trousers on the bottom half of the suit jacket then fold the entire bottom half of it up; carefully place in your suitcase on top of everything else.
Roll your clothes
Rolling your clothes maximises the space in your luggage as well as minimises wrinkles. This method should allow you to fit everything you need for a business trip in a just a carry-on. You can further aid this system by investing in good quality wrinkle-free clothing or, alternatively, pack any wrinkle-prone items into a dry-cleaning bag where they will just slide around and are less likely to crease.
If you’re a frequent flier, your hotel’s laundry service is your best friend, particularly for longer trips. Many leading hotels in major cities offer same-day laundry service. Making use of this facility will enable you to travel with just a carry-on every time. Hotel laundry also offer options like collar starching and dry cleaning. In addition, there’s that deeply satisfactory feeling of receiving your clothing back pressed and folded and ready to just pop back into your suitcase.
Power up with a power board
Avoid travelling with a collection of power adaptors by packing a power board. You’ll need only the one adaptor but will be able to charge all your devices at once. Opt for a sleek model with a short cable so it can easily fit in your suitcase bag, laptop bag, or even at the bottom of your garment bag if you’re pressed for space.
Frequent guest perks
If you stay at the same hotel regularly, or are a member with a particular chain, you can ask to have some of your items stored in their secure hold room. Many leading hotels will allow you to do this if requested and even have it waiting in your room the next time you visit. You can leave a heavy coat if visiting New York in the winter months, for example, which will save you having to lug it around when returning to our much warmer climes.