Business Travel Tips: Top 5 Business Traveler Nightmares – And How To Prevent Them

Business travel is on the rebound. As the economy continues to grow, companies are unleashing their employees to travel to seek opportunities and work with clients and customers all over the world. Increased numbers of business travelers bring problems as well. Travel delays and other obstacles simply increase with volume, and the more you travel, the more you suffer from them. But preparation can at least equip every business traveler with the tools to master the business travel environment and reduce or eliminate the obstacles to a successful business trip. Here Are My Top 5 Business Travel Nightmares — And How To Prevent Or Deal With Them: 1. You’re in danger of missing your flight: you’re stuck in the security line because you didn’t know about some recent rule changes. Today, 3-1-1 is the mantra of the business traveler. If you want to carry on – remember containers of liquid holding no more than 3 ounces, all in 1 (and only 1) quart size zip lock bag. But these rules change all the time. Keep up to date on the government carry-on restrictions. It takes a few minutes at home on your computer before you head to the airport. The best resource to use is www.tsa.gov. Another alternative would be your airline’s website – if you check in on-line, then it’s just an additional click of the mouse. 2. Your flight’s been cancelled, you’re in danger of missing that critical client meeting and you’re 30th in line at the customer service desk. As a standard practice, your travel agent’s, preferred airline’s or website’s customer service number should be in your cell phone speed dial. At the first hint of a delay, contact one of them directly and ask for the flight status. They have access to information that you don’t and can start working on alternatives for you. If your flight is cancelled, there are only going to be so many seats available on alternative flights, and your objective is to get one of those coveted seats before anyone else does. One early phone call can get you there. 3. You are receiving the cold shoulder because you used the 6 words that every ticket or gate agent despises. “Do you know who I am” are the six most lethal words any passenger can use. A gate or ticket agent, unlike your colleagues or your clients or customers, doesn’t care who or how important you are. What’s important to them is your name and flight information, which they have in front of them. So leave your “status” at home. Kindness, deference, respect and a little empathy go much farther as a business traveler than self-importance when dealing with airline personnel. They are the gatekeepers with a lot of discretion, and treating them properly can make them much more interested in helping you when one of the inevitable flight problems arises. 4. You just realized you can’t rent a car (or possibly even get home) because you’ve dropped your only form of identification in the airport that’s 2000 miles away. Remember that you can’t rent a car without a driver’s license and can’t board a plane without your ID. Thus, you must keep your ticket and your ID in a secure place with easy access at all times on the road. Get something to put around your neck or, if that’s not stylish enough, try a separate case, such as the A-Way Ticket Tote. A little expenditure for something that will keep your ID in the same place all the time will be a big help in preventing a disaster or at least keep you from worrying about it. 5. You and your colleagues have been discussing a confidential strategy the entire flight only to find that your competition has been listening from the row behind you. Business colleagues typically discuss their business when they travel together, and if they are going on a trip for a specific purpose, their discussion will probably center on that purpose. But on an airplane you have no idea who is listening nearby. Just be sure that you are guarded enough that you would not be embarrassed or your business harmed if your words were published in the newspaper. Be discrete; you really never do know who is listening to you.

Business Travel Insurance: Go For Your Business Travel Safely

Many people in UK are flying abroad to different countries for international board meetings, and for other business purposes. In this era of fast and speedy communication and transportation, people need to travel frequently to different places for various purposes of their organization, firms or their own business. But no one knows when their luck may fail to stay with them and they meet with some accidents or mishaps or some other minor illness. Whatever may be the case, the money required for all these treatments can leave a hole in your pockets. For this reason, business travel insurance is a must for the people who travel frequently to far off places for their business purposes. The employer sometimes offers some degree of protection to his employees, but many a times it is seen that those protective measures are not sufficient in covering you for every eventuality. There are plenty of business travelers who have discovered that the measure the company has arranged for them is not often so adequate. So it is imperative for you to buy for yourself a business travel insurance to meet and face those eventualities. You can buy single trip business travel insurance or multi-trip business insurance policies. If you are not a frequent traveler then single trip business travel insurance policy is the best for you. But if you fly frequently for your company or business organization to different countries then annual or multi-trip policies are the best for you. Normally it is seen that the later one is best suited for someone who wants to avail business travel insurance. The various covers on business travel insurance include: computer equipment samples, delayed business equipment and even a courier to get vital items to you. Apart from tat it will cover your medical expenses, personal and legal liability, cancellation of flights, loss of baggage etc. To find the adequate insurance before your departure, you should do a detailed study of all the companies that provide with business travel insurance. There should also be thorough comparison done of the various business travel insurance quotes found in the market. With internet facilities this work has now been transformed into an easy and effortless work. Just visit the sites of various companies that will provide you with business travel insurance. You can even purchase a business travel insurance policy online and your policy will be delivered to your homes.

Cheap Kerala Tour Packages

The state of Kerala is located at south-western peninsular tip of India. It is sandwiched between tall mountains and deep sea. Popularly known as God’s Own Country, this southern state of India is a tropical paradise that offers a never-seen-before enchanting view of the nature. It is such a pleasant place to be that you cannot stop admiring its simplicity and richness once you set out on a Kerala tour.

The Backwaters of Kerala enhances the ecological beauty of the state manifolds. Kollam, Kochi, Alappuzha, Kottayam, Kasargod, Kumarakom and Kuttanad are some of the most popular backwater destinations in Kerala. These silent water bodies will simply drive you crazy by its splendour and exotic locales. You can easily explore these backwaters by opting for the traditional House Boats or Harbour Cruises on your Kerala backwater tours.

In addition to backwaters, the exotic beaches of Kerala act as perfect holiday destination for honeymooners as well as leisure travellers. Simply enjoy the sunset or the sunrise while you relax along the beach. You can even take a walk on the white sand of the beach to let wet sand slip below your feet. And if you want to add more fun and adventure to your Kerala tour, participate in a wide range of waster-sport activities like rafting, sailing, wind surfing and catamaran rides. If you travel to Kochi harbour you will see fishermen catching fish using Chinese fishing nets. Kerala beaches have lot to offer, you just need to take your pick!

Travelling through Kerala you can engage in a number of other exciting activities. You can either ride an elephant or trek in Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary in Thekkady. You can choose between day treks and night treks and go for camping & bamboo rafting to make your Kerala tour an unforgettable event. In Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary you can also watch some rare and endangered wildlife from close quarters.

Besides its natural beauty Kerala also has a fascinating cultural attraction. It is home to people of different religion and customs making it the melting pot of cultural influences. It has highly rich art and cultural dimension that you can easily make out from its festivals and art forms. The food of Kerala is another specialty that you will enjoy on a Kerala tour to India.

Some of the major cultural events of Kerala are the festivals of Onam, the Vishu, the Thrissur Pooram and the annual Snake Boat Race at Alappuzha. Apart from these several other festivals like and Id & Christmas are also celebrated with huge gaiety and fervour in different regions of the state. Take a Kerala tour any time of the year and be sure to be greeted with one or the other of these celebrations.

Author’s BIO- Book your packages for a Kerala tour with India Tour Packages and enjoy natural beauty of this God’s own country. India Tour Packages is a specialized tour and travel management company offering cheap holiday packages for south India tour like kerala backwater tour, aurveda tour, south India temple tour etc. For more information visit: Indiatourpackages.co.uk.

All this and many more beautiful faces of Kerala will make you fall in love with this state. So book your trip for a Kerala tour today and get ready to experience a completely different world!

Shimla Tour – For Memorable Holidays

Shimla is one of the most sought after hill stations of northern India where tourists flock in large number throughout the year. This beautiful hill retreat is situated in the lap of lower Himalaya’s mountain ranges in Himachal Pradesh state. The mesmerising charm of this place lies in its verdant hill slopes, green pasture land, snow capped mountain peaks and number of Victorian style architectural buildings. It is the place where each season has its own charm and glory that enthral tourists who come here from across the globe.

This place is also renowned for its number of adventure sports activities which heighten the joy of visitors who come here for pleasurable holidays. The popular tourist attractions which are visited by tourists during their Shimla Tour are:

Ridge Road

This is an awe-inspiring attraction of Shimla from where tourists get breathtaking views of the mountains with snow laden peaks. Tourists come here to get panoramic views of nature’s speckled beauty. Apart from the scenic vistas this place is also famous for its Neo-Gothic Christ Church and Tudar Library.

Mall

It is the heart of Shimla bustling with social life. This is a must visit attraction of Shimla because of its scattered charm of natural and artificial wonders. The beauty of this place lies in its magnificent colonial style buildings, shops, restaurants and heritage theatre. It is the best place for tourists to enjoy their leisure. The popular tourist attractions of this place are General post office, Scandal point, Kali Bari temple and Christ Church.

Jakhu Temple

This is the highest point of Shimla situated at an altitude of 8000 feet above sea level. It is a breathtaking place from where tourists get mesmerizing bird’s eye view of the entire city and surrounding valley. The Hanuman temple is the popular attraction of this place which is visited by large number of tourists as well as devotees throughout the year.

Chadwick Falls

It is a beautiful fall which is located 7 km from the city centre. Large number of tourists comes here to see the cascading beauty of water falling from a height of 67 meter above sea level. The panoramic charm of this place is heightened by the presence of thick deodar forests. Trekking is the best way to reach this place which gives tourists an enthralling experience because of the scattered natural beauty.

Shimla is also famous for its number of adventure sports activities which heighten the joy and excitement of tourists who come here during their holidays. The geographical location amidst mountain ranges makes it a perfect place for trekking, hiking and camping. During winter the thick layer of snow make it a perfect place for skiing and several winter sport activities.

11 tips for a successful business travel abroad

Travelling overseas for business seems very exciting, but not always as easy as it may sound. New land, new environment, new people, different beliefs, different culture and one mistake could easily make or break the business deal you travelled miles for.

So, here are some tips to help you plan such an important trip in a better way.

1. Research well regarding the cultural differences

While Japanese and Germans consider it rude to be late for a business meeting, whereas, people in many of the Latin countries have a relaxed attitude towards time. Koreans expect you to pay extra respect to the oldest person in the room. It’s expected of you to bow down and to present a gift at the first meeting in Japan, whereas, Germans don’t appreciate the idea of giving away gifts.

Wherever you travel to there will always be some cultural differences, it’s always the best idea to research well about the place you are travelling to. Ask your colleagues or friends who may have already visited the place to share their insights on local customs. Also, get the latest updates on the current news it will provide you some interesting topics for conversation with your colleagues over coffee!

2. Get your outfit right

While it’s advisable to wear covered clothes in the majority of Asian countries, Europeans and Americans are comparatively relaxed in this regard. Make sure you find out about the dress code followed at the place you’re visiting, as it may vary dramatically from one country to another. Adopting the right attire can instantly help you to blend with the people in the foreign land.

Pack for the climate, keep outfits simple, for all the beautiful ladies, it’s advisable to wear light make-up and jewelry.

3. Learn some local language

Although, English is the international business language, but learning a few of the local phrases will surely help in making a nice impression on your colleagues.

Even just the basics like ‘hello’, ‘thank you’, ‘please’, ‘goodbye’ in the foreign language would help you deal with taxi drivers, order dinner or get directions with a little more ease. Do practice before you leave.

4. Utilize the social media sites

It’s always good to take help from the social media sites (LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter) while collecting the information about the company and its employees, you are going to meet to get a fair idea about them. If possible, chat online with a few of them for those pre-meet talks.

5. Ask the locals

Try connecting with at least one person based on the location you’re travelling to ensure you get the most up-to-date advice on the best places to stay and how to get around. It’s always best to have friendly faces around to help you solve any questions or difficulties.

6. Ensure that you have access to money

Find out the currency exchange rate is in the country where you are traveling. If your bank has international partnerships, then it might help in reducing your ATM fees whenever you withdraw money abroad. Else, we advise you to go for a Matrix Forex Card, which is available in 15 currencies at preferential exchange rates and offer instant cash without any extra charges.
Matrix Cellular also offers Forex combo plans which offer up to 100% discount on SIM card usage, on buying certain values of Foreign Exchange from Matrix.

7. Make sure you have the proper voltage adapter

Imagine you are going through the last minute checking of your PowerPoint presentation and you are unable to charge your device due to the difference in the power plug!

It is crucial to get the correct type of voltage adapter as the voltage adapters differ from one country to another.

Before you travel, ensure that you carry the proper adapters for outlets in the country to which you are traveling as you won’t want your gadgets running out of battery, especially during an international business trip!

8. Research your Internet connectivity options

In the United States, finding Internet connectivity is not a big deal. You can get free wireless Internet access at just about any fast food restaurant, coffee shop, or a bookstore. However, that is not the case in the other parts of the world.

Also, such connections are generally painfully slow and highly insecure! It’s better to carry your own data options for better and secured connectivity. Try Matrix data packs for faster internet connections in over 200 countries and enjoy uninterrupted access to emails, apps and browse when abroad.

9. Build a global network

Not everyone in your organization will get the opportunity to travel, so it’s a fantastic time to enhance your profile and make connections across the globe. Try for a good face-to-face interaction with them and build strong international connections which will surely make you a really valuable resource within your organization and could open up future opportunities.

10. Make the most of being away from home

Although it’s far from being a holiday trip but make sure you take out some time to get out of your hotel room and explore further what the place has to offer. Shopping and buying some souvenir for those special people back home is also a good option.

11. Check what it will cost to use your cell phone

Finally, if you plan to use your cell phone while abroad, which we know you do, find out how much it will cost to do so.

Before your departure, the first thing you should do is choose an International SIM card that could offer you better connectivity abroad so that you remain in constant touch with your colleagues and friends in India. For this, we recommend you to go for a Matrix SIM Card that offers the best call and data benefits to fit all your traveling needs. You can also opt for the Corporate Solutions by Matrix in case you desire for a tailor-made voice and data solutions for your specific corporate needs.

Why Business Travellers Are Moving To Service apartments

One of the main concerns for business travelers is of accommodation while where are visiting another city due to business purpose. Finding the right accommodation becomes even more important if you are visiting a metropolis such as Mumbai. Staying and taking food can become very expensive in a costly city like Mumbai and it is necessary to plan properly to reduce your overall expenditure during the trip.

In this regard many business travelers are getting attracted towards serviced apartments in Mumbai. So what is the reason behind it? Let us find out in the following sections.

Reasons Business Travelers Prefer Staying in Serviced Apartments

There are several reasons why such apartments are becoming popular by every passing day, some such reasons include:

More Spacious and Homely Accommodation

Mumbai service apartments are well known for providing spacious accommodation which makes you feel at home. These apartments are prefect for people who prefer homely atmosphere instead of a hotel stay.

Cooking Facilities

Reducing cost is a major goal for business travelers and staying in serviced apartments helps them in accomplishing this goal. As you must be aware of Mumbai is one of the costliest cities in the world and as such your restaurant bills can make your budget go haywire.

Serviced apartments are popular nowadays since they come with fully furnished kitchens consisting of fridge, gas oven, coffee and tea maker and microwave oven.

This means you can make your dishes, right from breakfast to dinner, you can decide what you want to eat and cook yourself.

Less Amount of Housekeeping

After traveling around the city for business purpose you will not like to return to your apartment and be disturbed every hour for housekeeping tasks.

After returning you will generally prefer to take a nap, watch something on television and relax while having a cup of coffee. Keeping this in view, serviced apartments in Mumbai reduce the number of times you are bothered for housekeeping chores.

Top Locations

Another issue you will face during your business travel in Mumbai is that of delays at the time of traveling from one place to another.

Traffic often moves at snails pace and in such situation you will prefer to stay somewhere close to your place of business destination.

This is where you will find serviced apartments useful since these are located in prime locations within the city which means you can significantly reduce your traveling time.

Number of Apartment Choices

Another interesting thing about Mumbai service apartmentsis that you can select from different types of apartments based upon your requirements and budget.

Right from penthouses for group of people to studio apartments for solo travelers there are varied choices open for you to choose from.

If you are looking to stay in serviced apartments during your Mumbai trip then Tranquil Homes can offer you several options to choose from depending upon your budget, location preference and the type of accommodation you are looking for.

How To Find The Best Business Travel Agency

If you have started your search for the best travel agent to get you to your business engagement with first class service, you have probably come across hundreds of corporate travel companies that claim to offer exactly that. If this is the first time you are choosing a travel agent for your business, the amount of competition is particularly confusing if you really are looking for the best service on offer.

After reading this article, you should go away with a clear perspective on things and know how to identify the best corporate travel agents. When comparing the agencies available, refer to these guidelines on what qualities to look out for:

1. Good reputation
A good reputation is often a key indicator of the level of services you can expect from a corporate travel agent. Therefore a company who’s name has a proven ability to deliver its promises to the right clients, often results in high quality customer services. A renowned business travel agent also uses company policies, testimonials and enquiry forms to prove that it conducts business well and tries to deal with and resolve all client complaints. Read online reviews made by past clients to get an even better impression of the travel companies reputation.

2. Competitive prices
A top quality service offered at competitive prices is a desirable feature for any business traveller, whether you will use them in the short or long term. Competitive price is therefore essential to the future success of a business travel company, such as discounts on bulk or repeat booking to help retain customers. You should make sure that the travel agency consistently offers standard and executive bookings to you and your staff at reasonable prices.

3. Financially stable
When checking on the financial status of a business travel agent, remember that a company with a sound financial backing will not require you and your staff to make payments after every booking. It will be able to get credit from its supplier, which will then be transferred to its clients. This is one very good reason why it’s worth your while to check that the travel agency is not writhing in debts. One sign that the agency is experiencing financial difficulties is if they deny your booking. It would be best to look elsewhere if this happens.

4. Timely and regularly updated services
One of the most telling indications of whether a business travel agency is capable of delivering on time is by checking how long it takes them to process the booking. A good travel agency will have no problem with making short notice bookings. For a business travel agency to offer timely and up-to-date services, it must have strong professional connections with all the major tour companies, hotels and airlines. It must make online bookings using modern and have the confidence and knowledge to advise you on what and where to book.

5. Experienced and knowledgeable customer support department
When you contact a business travel agency, your first point of contact will be their customer support team. As they will form your first impression of the company, they must answer your queries in a satisfactory manner at all times. Therefore, when looking for a reputable business travel agency, choose the one whose customer support department sounds the strongest. In addition, the customer support staff should be highly trained, presentable and easy to reach via phone, email and face-to-face chat. They should also get the billing organised quickly so that you have plenty of time to make payments.
By taking the time to use the sound advice in the points above, you are sure to find the best travel agency to organise your business trip.