Mastering the Art of Work Travel: Prepping for Departure and Returning Home Gracefully

“Travel brings power and love back into your life.” – Rumi. But what happens when that travel is for work and brings with it the stress of meetings, presentations, and the discomfort of being away from home? In this post, we’ll explore effective strategies for preparing for work travel and readjusting to home life afterward.

Preparing for Work Travel

Plan Ahead

Before jetting off, conduct research about your destination. Are you aware of the local customs? Have you checked the weather forecast? Knowledge of these factors can save you from unexpected surprises and help you plan effectively. Sites like TripAdvisor or local travel blogs can be a wealth of information.

Pack Smart

Efficiency is key when packing for a business trip. Bringing versatile clothing items that can transition from day to night can help keep your luggage light. Don’t forget your essentials like electronics and their respective chargers. Remember, “The more you know before you leave, the less you need to carry,” as pointed out by travel expert Rick Steves.

Prepare for Work

Review any materials you might need for your work obligations ahead of time. Whether it’s a presentation or a client meeting, being prepared will not only impress your colleagues and clients but also help alleviate some travel-induced stress.

Inform Key People

Ensure colleagues, clients, and family are aware of your travel plans. In his book “Before Happiness,” Shawn Achor talks about the importance of social support in dealing with stress. While you’re away, knowing someone reliable is there for work emergencies or family matters can be a great relief.

Home Preparations

Make arrangements for pets, plants, or other responsibilities that require attention during your absence. These preparations will help ensure a smoother transition upon your return.

Adjusting to Home Life After Travel

Take Time to Rest

Travel can take a toll on your physical and mental health. According to the Mayo Clinic, it’s important to take time to rest and recover after a long trip.

Reestablish Routines

Getting back into your regular routine can help signal to your body and mind that you’re back in your usual environment. If you regularly workout in the morning, return to that habit as soon as possible.

Catch Up Gradually

It might be tempting to try and catch up on everything immediately, but try to resist. According to a study from the University of British Columbia, constantly checking your email can lead to increased stress. Instead, set aside specific times to catch up on emails and other tasks.


Spending time with loved ones can provide a sense of normality and grounding after a hectic business trip. As author and researcher Brené Brown says, “Connection is why we’re here. We are hardwired to connect with others.”


Reflection is an important part of any experience. Taking some time to think about what worked well and what could be improved can make your next business trip even more successful.

Remember, the aim is to strike a balance between fulfilling your professional responsibilities and maintaining your wellbeing. As author Alain de Botton stated, “The pleasure we derive from journeys is perhaps dependent more on the mindset with which we travel than on the destination we travel to.” So, pack your suitcase and your strategies, and make your next business trip a breeze!



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