Traveling for work can be rough. It’s stressful, it’s structured and it usually involves some very early mornings and mediocre coffee. But business travel isn’t slowing down any time soon as in 2016, U.S. travelers took 458.9 million domestic business trips and this is expected to reach 478.2 million by 2020.
But if you do have a chance when traveling for work to get a moment to just explore, whether it is tacking on an extra day to a trip or just taking a long lunch, it can have a profound impact on you.
According to a new national survey of consumers with trips planned within the next 12 to 18 months by the Marriott Rewards Premier Plus Credit Card, a new program from Chase Card Services and Marriott International to help its members travel better, 96% of those surveyed said it’s important to align their travel plans with their personal passions as the benefits can be immense. Here are some interesting findings from the survey:
- 62% of consumers feel like travel allows them to connect with their inner self
- 76% of those surveyed agree traveling gets them out of their comfort zone
- 77% agree traveling has given them a chance to learn from others whose life experiences are different
- 70% agree travel allows them to better understand other people’s points of view
Of course, a business trip is very different than a trip for a vacation so how can you make your business trip a bit better so you can reap the benefits? Here are a few tips:
Tack on an extra day
If you are in an amazing place and can pull it off, add an extra day and plan some excursions or just walk anywhere and everywhere.
Meet up with friends or family
The survey found that 70% of people create new connections with loved ones through travel. See if your spouse or a friend can join you for some of the trip or meet up with an old acquaintance.
Take a break
If you can, go sit by the hotel pool or just take a little break in your room even if it is only for 15 minutes.
Try the local cuisine
If your trip includes business dinners try to find some authentic cuisine. It will help you experience the culture better.