Business trips are different from holidays and pleasure trips because the items you are taking to a business trip are usually irreplaceable and closely related to your work. It is true that many things can be bought at the airport or locally, when you arrive, but an USB with valuable corporate data or presentations you prepared for a series of business meetings cannot. Even if you are an experienced traveler and could tell a story or two, these are some of the things that you better have in your suitcase once you pass that airport gate.
It goes without saying that your smartphone accompanies your even in the most private situations, so I’m not going to bring that issue up. However, a laptop is a tool of the trade and if you swipe your smartphone screen in the middle of an appointment or conference, may look like you’re texting, although you may be catching up with your work or updating your assignments. Also, it’s always good to have options so, an 8 or 10 tablet will complement your laptop in situations where portability and limited space is an issue, or simply if the laptop power battery dies and a power socket is too far.
Hopefully, you’ll shake many hands and meet many potential business partners on your trip. If you want to make a good impression at the very start, it pays off to have some classy promotional merchandise at your disposal. Think of pens, lighters, wallets, folding pencil holders, pocket knives, USB sticks, etc. A recent study has shown that about 79 percent of people are likely to do business with a company if they received a promotional gift from a company’s representative.
For all Debts, Public and Private
If you think you will always find an exchange office or an ATM, think again. They are frequent and abundant around the airports and tourist hubs, but if your business trip takes you away from popular holiday sites, stash of local currency is more than welcome. Or simply, you can have such a demanding meeting schedule that you couldn’t make it to an exchange office. In addition, a supple amount of dollars and euros is something seasoned travelers always have in their hand luggage.
Across the cultures, business appearance is important and expected on every business meeting. If you don’t want to start negotiating a million-dollar business deal looking like Tom Waits who borrowed a shirt from Boxcar Willie, keep a neatly folded shirt or two at the bottom of your suitcase. Your shirt will get creased and wrinkled after a 10-hour flight. Luckily, if you travel business class, they will offer to iron your shirt at the arrivals lounge. Some hotels provide ironing and pressing services, but if they do not, a spare home-ironed shirt or two won’t add much bulk to your luggage.
To sum up, the items that I failed to mention here are those that can be bought locally, replaced, or printed out. The conclusion is to always bring the quality items with yourself and not cluttering your suitcase with items that are readily available like body care products or shaver blades.
Map of Kinshasa Photo Gallery
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