The 6 Rules of Business Traveler Etiquette

Business travel can wear down even the most resilient road warrior.  Up in the air, you’re not sure what your next meal will be or if you can remember where you’re supposed to be eating it.

And then, there are those “other” people.  They’re not always the most pleasant individuals to deal with because, like you, many are traveling on business.  Cranky, tired and ragged around the edges, they’re sometimes challenging.

But following these 6 rules of business traveler etiquette can make the whole affair less trying for everyone involved.  And isn’t that what you want?

1. The Gate Agent Is Your Friend

Pity the lowly gate agent, attempting to herd all the cats in the line onto the waiting airplane in time for takeoff.

But in travel situations, things go sideways.  That doesn’t give you license to lose your cool, regardless of how important that meeting you’re flying to is.  So, be nice.  Be Zen.  Don’t be “that guy”.

2. Avoid the “Bonk”

If you haven’t been bonked by a bag during boarding, you probably haven’t traveled much.

So, when boarding, mind the position of your carry on.  Be mindful that elbows are sticking out in the aisle and human heads are vulnerable, as you attempt to squash your carry on into the overhead bin.  Being aware avoids the “bonk”.

3. Don’t Be a Bin Hog

Don’t be the person with two large carry ons.  One is enough in these latter days of packed flights.  Being a bin hog is uncool. 

Further, stow your bag in the bin associated with your seat.  Gaming the system by stowing your bag at the front of the plane is deeply impolite, as it fails to recognize the needs of other passengers.  If you can’t get it in your bin, talk to a flight attendant.

4. It’s Not Your Bathroom

Under no circumstances are you to treat an airline seat as your personal bathroom.  No clipping or filing nails.  No flossing and no extravagant brushing, braiding or other grooming of your hair. 

Aren’t there enough germs and other detritus on airplanes?  We think so.  Keep your ablutions to the appointed sanitary facilities.

5. No Line Jumping

It’s time to disembark!  The seatbelt sign goes off and a rush to the front door ensues.  Don’t do it.  Everyone on that plane needs to get somewhere.  You’re not alone in that, so don’t be thinking you’re special.

Merge into the line, employing patience and that Zen we were talking about earlier.

6. Cultural Awareness

Now that you’ve arrived in your distant destination, knowing where you are is key to presenting yourself as a worthy emissary of your employer.

Remember that you’re visiting.  Understand the customs and protocols of the destination.  Be prepared for a different way of doing business and aware of varying social norms.

Be that culturally aware road warrior who leaves a pleasant smell behind and a great impression of your organization.

Contact Incentive Travel Group for excellence in corporate travel and incentive programs.

And don’t forget your etiquette, road warrior!

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