Business travel has become more popular in the cyber-age. This is because the effort of travelling to see someone can often mean more for professional relations than sitting at a desktop while constantly skyping in and out of meetings all day.
The personal touch of travelling to a meeting is widely recognised as being a successful way for businesses to keep in contact and build better relationships. But is a business trip all fun and games or is it more stressful than you’d expect?
It may seem glamorous at times – fancy hotels, free drink/food, and lavish nightlife – but the reality of travelling for work more closely resembles rushing to and from meetings, sweating through your clothes, and 14-hour work days, according to new research.
In fact, the average business traveller gets only two hours of free time to themselves a day, and most feel pressured to put that sliver of time towards work.
The survey aimed to spotlight the biggest obstacles of work-related travel, found being away from family, dealing with airports, living out of a suitcase, and worrying about sweat and clothing wrinkles number among the biggest challenges of travelling for work.
The study by Jos. A. Bank surveyed 2,000 men who travel for business and found that looking presentable while living out of a suitcase can be tough, and it doesn’t help that there seems to be added pressure to look your best when on the road – at least according to 70 per cent of survey respondents.
Free time can be hard to come by when you’re travelling on the clock, too. Respondents say they have, on average, about two hours a day to themselves, with 47 per cent saying they have even less than that.
Being able to actually spend that free time relaxing or exploring the city is a challenge in itself, as 63 per cent of men who travel for work say they feel pressure to spend their precious free hours working in some fashion.
Mary Beth Blake, brand president of Jos. A. Bank, said: “While travelling for business can yield some unexpected obstacles.”
While business travel can certainly be wearisome in some ways, the survey also found there were quite a few benefits to it as well.
Getting able to see a new place was named the best thing about travelling for work (56 per cent), and meeting new people face-to-face (55 per cent), and racking up those handy hotel rewards points (53 per cent) round out the top three.
When business travellers can get away from work on a trip, the most popular way to spend that time is trying out the local restaurants (77 per cent), with exploring the city coming in second place (67 per cent).
But a work trip is just that, it turns out, as 62 per cent say they spend their free time putting in work, putting it in third place.
So what is the secret to having a successful business trip?
When tasked to come up with one piece of advice to give business travellers on how to have a successful business trip, two words kept coming up: “Be prepared.”
“Being prepared is key for any business trip,” said Blake