After a few years of working for myself and small companies, I had never traveled for work before. I recently joined a digital marketing agency that is based in New York City, and part of getting to know the team involved taking a work trip up there for a work week.
As someone who absolutely loves to travel, I thought it would be a good chance to get to hang out in the city and relax a bit, but I had no idea what exactly I was getting myself into.
So here are 6 things to know before your first work trip:
My boss let us know that we should plan on “business casual” every day, so I made sure to bring all I needed for my days on the clock. But as a terribly bad over-packer, I also packed extra sets of work clothes, leisure clothes, and workout clothes to the point where only about half of them actually got worn. I was definitely left with regrets knowing I was lugging around things I knew I didn’t need.
Be Prepared to be Busy
As much as you may hope for a lot of down time to relax, that probably won’t be the case. Work travel is typically jam packed with meetings and, well, work. Whatever the reason is, you only have a limited time to be there, and chances are your company is going to want you to make the most of it
If there’s something you want to see and check out, plan it ahead of time! With the limited time you have between working long days and having to find time to sleep, there’s no way you’re going to find the time to hit all of the things you want to do or see without a plan to fit it all in. Even though I’ve been to NYC a few times, I made sure to hit Times Square as well as a few good restaurants that were on my list and a Jiu Jitsu gym
You’re Stuck With People
A lot of the time, if your company wants to pay money to fly you somewhere, you’re going to be up to your eyeballs in dealing with other people. In my case, our visiting team all stayed in an Outsite together, and while we each got our own rooms and it was comfortable, it never felt like you were truly alone.
In my case, a large goal of my trip was to connect with my team face-to-face since a lot of us live in different places. Team building was honestly pretty fun, and included a lot of delicious dinners with the crew as well as workshops and just hanging out.
This is probably the best perk of traveling for a job– they have to pay for your shit! Make sure to check with your employer, but there is a daily budget that varies depending on where you’re visiting that covers travel, food, and any other necessities that you can save receipts for in order to file an expense report for when you get home.
I know that everyone is different, and your experience can differ depending on the company you work for as well as the location that you are traveling to, but I feel like these tips can help out anyone who is looking for a better idea of what to expect!
Got any more tips? Let me know in the comments!
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