The opportunity to travel within a job position is definitely a perk that many applicants look for. But, when you’re schedule is full of meetings and you’re suffering from a nasty bout of jet-lag, it’s difficult to make the most of an otherwise exciting experience in a new place. However, there are things you can do to utilize the spare time that you have so that you return home having enjoyed your business trip.
1. Research before you go
Even if you just note down a couple of things you want to see or do, it’s a great idea to know what activities there are around where you will be staying. Don’t worry about writing a huge list of places – all you need is a quick flip through a guide book so when you have a spare couple of hours in between meetings, you can quickly and easily go exploring without any hassle.
2. Get out and about – but not too much
It’s easy to fall back into the comfort of your hotel room after a day of working, but if you really want to make the most of your leisure time you need to get out and about in the city. It’s difficult to explore a place from the confines of your five star room, but you might find yourself reverting back to it, especially if you have work to do after hours. Instead, get the best of both worlds by heading out to a nearby café where you can watch the locals go about their daily life.
On the other hand, it’s worth taking some time to relax too. If you have a jam-packed itinerary for your free hours, you’ll just end up tired, cranky, and not having a good time. Be picky with what you want to do and make sure you don’t run yourself into the ground – you are on a business trip after all.
3. Extend your trip
Does your business trip end on a Friday? Why not extend your trip to include the weekend, too, so you can enjoy your surroundings without having to work? Take these days to wander around at your own pace and take in some of the sights you couldn’t see from the boardroom.
After a week of meetings and deadlines, organising an itinerary might be the last thing you want to do. If this is the case, consider taking a pre-arranged tour; if you want to see as much as possible without having the pressure of arranging it, book a group tour where you can discover a lot in a short amount of time or hire a tour guide to show you around and offer you a deeper insight into the place.
4. Ask a local
This is one of the easiest ways to immerse yourself in the surrounding culture whilst on a business trip. Even if you simply ask a local what their favourite eatery is and go there instead of the hotel restaurant, you will instantly feel more connected to the place as well as having had the chance to try some of the local cuisine. This shouldn’t take any time out of your business itinerary either so you won’t have to worry about getting behind.
5. Be realistic
Finally, be realistic about how much you can actually fit in around your work. Remember that you are first and foremost on a business trip and that should be your main priority. It is a bonus if you can get out and about and see some of the local sights, but this shouldn’t override your job. Essentially, getting the most out of a business trip is all about maintaining a balance between doing what you need to do for work and what you want to do for you.