Thorough planning and preparation is essential when going on corporate travels. You become more confident, relaxed, and focused once you set foot in your destination when you know you’ve had everything planned out for your trip, including your trip details, accommodation, itinerary, and the activities you plan on doing during your trip.

Giving yourself ample time to prepare allows your mind to focus on the important things, create a good impression with the people you’re going to meet, and to have a laser focus on the intent of your meeting. When planning for your business trip, it’s crucial to pay keen attention to detail to avoid mistakes and delays which can be very costly to you and your company.

If you’re scheduled to leave for a business trip in a few days time, these reminders will help you plan efficiently and ensure you won’t miss out on anything:

1. Book flights early

Photo by Nicole Geri

If you’re traveling to a sought-after destination, it’s necessary that you book your flights early (at least two weeks prior to your date of departure) because flight schedules on famous routes usually sell like hotcakes. Travel experts suggest that January (and the first half of the year) is the ideal time to start booking flights since demand and prices aren’t that high during this period.

Avoid booking tickets in March as prices can soar to as high as 56 percent higher than average. If your budget allows, book a nonstop flight to avoid time-consuming layovers or transfer flights so you can arrive at your destination on time.

2. Book your accommodation ahead of time

Photo by Ashley Gerlach

If you’re booking a trip for your boss, make sure to select a quality accommodation where your boss may spend majority of their time after their meetings. If your boss is scheduled to attend a conference, you can ask the organizers if they’re offering exclusive accommodation deals with a specific hotel. If your company regularly books with that hotel chain or if you’re reserving rooms for a group, try to inquire if they can grant you a complimentary room upgrade.

3. Organize a complete itinerary

Your itinerary is your guide to a smooth and successful corporate travel. As such, try to stick to it and be in control of every detail, including transport schedules (if you’re arranging transfers, be specific of the pickup and dropoff times), the list of people you’re meeting, as well as your hotel address. Leave some time allowance for traffic, rest in between meetings, and for delayed/overrun meetings. Download a copy of your itinerary in your phone.

4. Pre-book reliable ground transportation

Business trips can be physically taxing, especially if you have to travel far distances between two points throughout the duration of the trip. Make your trip more convenient and easy to manage by booking a chauffeur service. If you’re travelling with a group, it may be best to arrange transfers with a charter bus rental in Toronto that can drive your group from the airport to the meetings and excursions you need to attend.

5. Prepare for your meeting

Now that you’ve taken care of the nitty-gritty details of your trip, make sure to get ready for the main purpose of your travel: your meetings. Take note of you business objectives and everything you need to accomplish. Is it to build rapport with new contacts, close a deal, be better acquainted with a prospective client, or to conduct an ocular inspection on a new site for a building project? As much as possible, gather information about the people you’ll meet and the places you’ll visit.

It takes time and effort to craft the perfect business trip. But with repetition, you’ll be wiser in planning your trip as you go along. Always remember to devote enough time to plan and prepare for a prolific and fun-filled trip.

By Allaine Lines