“Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe.”
― Abraham Lincoln
Preparing a Business Travel Itinerary
The quote above tells you everything you need to know about travel planning and creating a Travel Itinerary. I promise you, when done properly the business travel itinerary will save you time, save you money and quite possibly be the difference between a successful business trip and a failed one.
Abraham Lincoln was a proponent for preparation. He has been credited with dozens of memorable quotes and the one above is my favorite. Additionally, I believe that the quote speaks volumes with respect to business travel preparation.
Utilizing a business travel itinerary not only organizes your travel plans, but allows you the opportunity to review your travel plans for missing agenda items, provides you with an hour by hour schedule and can even offer helpful reminders during your trip.
How to Create a Business Travel Itinerary
Use a BTG Business Travel Itinerary Template: At the bottom of this article BTG will offer several Free Business Travel Itinerary templates for you to choose from. These templates can be easily printed or stored electronically, which ever you prefer. Feel free to alter the templates in any way that suits your needs and all we ask in return is that you recommend us to other business travelers.
Prepare well in Advance: BTG suggeststhat you begin the itinerary process at least one month in advance. There are several reasons to get started early and “cost” is not the least of those reasons. Air fare, train tickets and even hotel reservations will be cheaper when booked in advance.
Additionally, preparing early will give you the opportunity to make changes, shop for better pricing and potentially avoid “no-vacancies” or “sold out” air flights. The advantages of booking your transportation and accommodation early are numerous, not the least of which are the best selection of seats, rooms and potential discounts.
Booking Flights and Accommodations: You should know by now that Business Travel Gadgets recommends Booking.com as your online travel agent and outlines exactly why we recommend the service in our “Benefits of Using Bookin.com” page. The process behind using an online service for your travel needs is fairly clear. These services obtain bettern princing by grouping large number of travelers and obtaining discounted pricing from airlines, hotels and car rental companies.
Once the reservations are made you can simply add them to your buisness trip itinerary along with the best times to leave for the given airport, train station or bus terminal.
Get the Rental Car: I will be curious to see if the rental car industry lasts much longer with the advent of Rideshare Companies. When I arrive at larger airports like JFK, Philadelphia or Dulles, there are no less than 150 to 200 ride share drivers eagerly waiting to take me anywhere I want to go. And after speaking to a few dozen Uber or Lyft drivers, I found that they typically only wait about 30 minutes before the are at the front of the queue and getting a paid “PAX”, as they refer to us.
Both ride share compnaies, Uber and Lyft, have implemented “scheduled rides” and although I have not tried this feature, it sounds like a valuable tool, particularly for the ride to the airport. In general, in my area, I generally only wait about 15 minutes for a ride. So only the future will tell how this latest trend will impact the rental car industry.
If you choose to go the rental car route, I highly recommend…
Arrange Business Contacts:
List all of your important appointments, including the dates, times and locations in order of their occurrence. Summarize the five Ws–who, what, where, when and why–for each entry on the itinerary so that you’re clear on every detail. Pull up an online map program, such as MapQuest, which allows you to set up a series of stops within one search, and print directions to guide you throughout the trip.
Check the weather forecast for the dates of your trip ahead of time in that location so that you can pack accordingly.