10 Must-Have business travel tips in India
India is one the fastest growing business travel segments in the world (take a look at any of our airports on a Monday morning at 7 a.m.!) — according to a recent survey, Indian business travelers have the highest short business trips in the world (34%). Yet, most “Indian business travel tips” are for the tiny percentage of professionals who are traveling into India for the first time.
For this exploding set of domestic business travelers, we asked our professional networks & friends for their smart domestic business travel tips. You will continue to scamper between meetings, get stuck in traffic, and egg the cab-wallah on to drive just a little faster to that all important meeting. However, we’re hoping these tips make your work trips a bit easier.
1. Eat a healthy filling breakfast: When you are to perhaps take the early flight out, make sure to eat heartily. In India, where fixed meal timings isn’t really a thing, You’re never certain when the next meal is coming.
2. Airport Lounges: Check if your debit card gives you access to airport lounges. Most banks’ debit & credit cards do, including Axis, Kotak, HDFC & ICICI. A more detailed list from the excellent Live from a Lounge blog. The food isn’t great, but at least the seats are comfortable & you can get a piece of fruit here which you can carry onto the flight.
3. Carry a bag of nuts: Equipping yourself with a bag of assorted nuts would be a very wise call. Nuts like walnuts, ground nuts, cashews, dates, etc are an extremely healthy alternative to splurging on expensive snacks. When the stewardess come down the aisle, whip out your healthier + cheaper snack.
4. Book your cabs on OLA: No, this isn’t another one of those mutual promotion things with Ola. It just works for us, quite splendidly. Uber doesn’t work for Indian scheduling vagaries. Use the Indian #OlaForSure to book cabs way in advance, and without the worry of being charged cancellation fees. When your meeting is done, your cab will be waiting for you.
5. Be sure to charge your phone and laptop beforehand: You never know when you’ll find the next plug point. Too many times in Indian airports, you’ll hear a “yeh plug point nahin chal raha hai“. Be prepared with fully charged batteries before the journey.
6. Carry your own Wi-Fi: This one is pretty straightforward, isn’t it? Its not easy to find good wi-fi (well, apart from if you’re at a BreathingRoom!) with even hotel networks crawlingly slow. A smarter thing to do would be carry your own internet dongle.
7. Carry rubber bands: Courtesy of the iconic ‘wet’ bathrooms in india, it would behove you to carry toilet paper and rubber bands. The latter would come in handy to perhaps tie your trouser leggings in place while using the washroom.
8. Avoid heels: A woman specific tip, avoid heels while traveling for work. Pot-hole laden Indian roads, alongwith long stretches to walk (Google maps isn’t the most accurate in India) are sure to give you a sore, literally and figuratively.
9. Snooze equipment: For those who find catching a quick shut eye in various settings and environments a tad harder than others, arm yourself with an EyeMask. Also try the WhiteNoise app. #SleepLikeABaby
10. Oh, we almost forgot — Book your BreathingRoom between your meetings & be super productive, find plug points & beat those dreaded red-eye flights.
In the comments below, do share your #secretTravelTip that helps you beat some of our uniquely Indian challenges?