5 Tips to Traveling With a Friend During a Business Trip
More business professionals have started to combine corporate travel with vacation time. It’s a nice way to extend a trip and enjoy desirable destinations. Professionals who focus on trends in business travel call it bleisure.
Sometimes professionals opt to travel with a friend. It’s tough traveling to a new city and not having a support system on the ground. Others travel with friends since they will extend the trip after they complete the travel’s purpose.
Whether or not traveling for business with friends or family is a good idea remains up for debate. Corporate travel takes professionals to in-demand destinations. Plus, business travel amenities are often top-shelf.
Therefore, it’s tempting to bring people with you, especially if you need additional support.
The following are five tips for traveling with a friend during a business trip.
For safety reasons, notify your company when you plan to travel with a friend. Your company is responsible for your safety. However, your friend doesn’t fall under their umbrella.
If something goes sideways, your company must account for you. In turn, you must account for your travel companion.
Whether or not your employer approves travel with a companion depends on a few factors such as your:
- Reason for the trip
- Others traveling on the same trip
Keep in mind that employers establish rules to prevent chaos and dysfunction. Once they deviate from a rule, the company establishes a new precedent.
Moreover, the trip’s priority must stay at the top of your list. Sometimes guests can distract travelers. Therefore, management must make an executive decision that benefits the company first.
If the team approves traveling with a friend, they must expect that others will make similar requests in the future. For example, others might request to travel with their families.
The company must decide if this is a request they want to deal with in the future.
When you receive approval to travel with a companion, figure out the costs. Friends travel together to save on expenses. Thus, they share rooms, split meals, and carpool.
In this case, your friend’s share of the costs depends on your reimbursable expenses. If your company covers your travel and hotel room 100%, your companion becomes responsible for their flight and room.
It’s a good idea for non-employee companions to book a room separate from yours to avoid commingling costs.
The costs for meals, entertainment, and extras are easier to figure out since everyone pays for what they consume.
Corporate travel planners must keep an eye on costs too. One way that corporate travel planners can determine if a hotel’s rates match the quality offered is by reading hotel reviews. Monitor them for current hotel partners and read them before booking your team at new properties.
If a companion travels with you during a corporate trip, both of you must understand your travel itinerary.
Your priority remains to attend the meetings, training sessions, and appointments set for you. Even your free time belongs to your employer since you can use it productively.
You might need to wake up early to arrive at a meeting first thing in the morning. Therefore, companions need to keep the bathroom free so you can prepare.
Sometimes traveling with friends for pleasure poses challenges, especially with groups of four or more. Thus, communication becomes key.
On business trips, you can plan to have meals with them. However, if meetings go long or you experience delays, they’ll need to make adjustments.
The good news is that instant communication is easy – simply send them a text.
Business professionals travel with companions daily, and most of them execute the trip without a hitch. You can do the same by staying in sync with your friend.
If they understand that you must focus on your business responsibilities, they can find other things to do.
In these situations, it helps to travel with friends that you have already traveled with. People experience different situations during travel. For example, you might discover that they enjoy shopping the street vendor offerings while you prefer to stay away from them.
Some business professionals travel with companions to have support. Others take the weekend off and plan to meet up with friends. When a companion joins you, ensure that they understand your priorities and their share of the costs. If you sync up, they can enjoy the trip with you.