6 Tips for Calming Business Travel Stress
From flight delays and navigating new cities to coordinating client meetings, business travel can challenge even the most organized executive. These inspired methods will help business travelers find peace of mind, no matter how hectic or ambitious your schedule.
At a time when it’s easier than ever to virtually connect with a client or colleague — whether over the phone, in a group message, or video conference — meeting face to face is that much more meaningful. And while that personal connection is doubtlessly worthwhile, the journey to get there can take its toll. Below, find five traveler-tested ways to combat stress on the road during your next business trip.
1. Be Prepared with Essentials (and Entertainment)
Well before you’re scheduled to depart, take a few minutes to create a master list of travel necessities, making sure to include chargers, headphones, exercise gear (see below) and any medications you might need. Be sure to include vitamin C tablets, which can help boost your immune system, and take the time to fill your tablet, phone or computer with as many books, movies, podcasts and other entertainment you’ll need for the flight — your home Wi-Fi is bound to be faster than whatever is available at the airport. Depart without any added stress to set the most Zen tone for your trip.
2. Elevate Your Accommodations
Business travel requires its own conveniences. Opt for a room on The Ritz-Carlton Club Level, where guests are invited to relax in the well-appointed communal space and enjoy unexpected experiences that are designed to ease traveler stresses by anticipating their every need. Features include a quiet business center and daily culinary presentations with healthy meals and snacks, from signature breakfast items to an afternoon pick-me-up. At properties like The Ritz-Carlton, Shenzhen in China, Club Level amenities includes complimentary one-hour garment pressing upon arrival, ensuring travelers look crisp and polished even after a day of traveling, as well as a chauffeured limousine service to take you to meetings in expeditious luxury.
3. Do Not Skip Your Workouts
The stress-reducing benefits of exercise are well-documented, so while it may seem impossible to squeeze in a little extra movement during an already hectic business trip, try to make it a priority. Pack sneakers and workout gear for a visit to the hotel’s fitness center. Ritz-Carlton hotels have cardio and strength training equipment, and many offer pools and other heart-pumping programming, like personal training, group fitness classes, wellness experiences and nutritional counseling. Some locations, like The Ritz-Carlton, Chicago, have impressive views from the workout spaces, including a rooftop yoga class with a prime view of Lake Michigan. Guests at The Ritz-Carlton, Cleveland have access to the 24-hour Core Fitness Club, where Fitness On Demand virtual group classes provide the perfect way to work a class into your busy day. If it’s not possible to work in an entire class, try this 30-minute in-room workout.
4. Schedule Time to Enjoy Your Destination
Even if it’s just the briefest window, allow yourself some personal time to experience your destination. Book a tour of a historic or cultural site through the hotel’s concierge — or, if time is short, seek a sense of place through the hotel’s spa or dining options. The Ritz-Carlton, Chengdu, for example, is situated in a UNESCO City of Gastronomy known for its rich spices and Sichuan peppers, which are showcased at the hotel’s Li Xuan restaurant with Dan Dan noodles, double-boiled sea conch, whole roasted suckling pig and other Cantonese and Sichuan specialties.
5. Take Sleep and Relaxation Seriously
Nothing makes you more vulnerable to stress than lack of sleep, and while it can be challenging to clock in your regular nightly minimum while on the road, there are some things that can help. Pack an eye mask, noise-canceling headphones and a cashmere blanket for a little luxurious comfort in flight. Also, remember flying can dehydrate, so while in transit, drink extra water and avoid alcohol. After checking in, power down electronic devices at least 30 minutes before bedtime, take a warm shower and do some light stretches before turning off the lights. To make winding-down even easier, book an evening massage at one of the on-property spas, like The Ritz-Carlton Spa, Dubai International Financial Center, where the comprehensive treatment menu is designed to restore balance and treatments are available until 10 p.m.
6. Rely on the Expertise of the Concierge
When it comes to planning an event or navigating multiple meetings in a new city, there may be no resource more valuable than a concierge at The Ritz-Carlton. As venerable experts of their hometowns, concierges are able to offer their guests an experienced perspective that is hard to come by otherwise. Well-versed in anticipating the needs of their guests, they can help ease the stress of business travel by ensuring that clothes are dry cleaned, reservations are made and agendas are printed. And if you have a bit of down time in between meetings, a concierge can help you make the most of your time by suggesting handpicked restaurants, shops and attractions. “When guests ask for directions to a destination, I like to ask if I can offer suggestions of attractions along their route that may be of interest,” says Ric Lee, concierge at The Ritz-Carlton, San Francisco. “Because I know the city so well, I’m able to offer tips for restaurants or shops that they may not find otherwise. It’s a true pleasure to help people discover the more hidden gems of San Francisco.”
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