The gem guide to business trips

I spend a fair amount of time travelling for work- I organise conferences, and while that involves a fair few nights of corporate entertaining (ie making sure delegates and the like are kept topped up with food and booze), there’s also a reasonable amount of hanging around on my lonesome in non-descript hotel rooms and tonight is one of those!

The are a few things I do to make trips away from home that little bit easier

1- packing- Everyone knows packing is rubbish and although I have it down to a fine and speedy art now, one thing that definitely makes it easier for me is having some permanently packed items. In my case, I have a dedicated conference toiletry bag ready to go with all my personal essentials, and my phone charger packed up in my overnight bag. Toiletries always take ages to pack up from scratch and I used to forget my phone charger all the time, which was a bit of a drag, so having these two done and dusted really speeds up my packing.

2- more packing- don’t bother ironing stuff- there will always be an iron in the most bog-standard of hotel room. And everyone knows that is bloody impossible to pack without creasing clothes, so why bother ironing twice?

3- home comforts- I always take my stuffed monkey and bed socks with me. The monkey is lame but essential for making me feel at home and I find it impossible to sleep with cold feet

4- routine- I always find it hard to sleep the first night in a strange bed, so i created my own conference sleep routine and only use it when I’m away from home-it basically involves a cup of peppermint tea drank in bed, while watching tv. I’ve done it so often when I’m away that I definitely associate it with sleepy time now. I take individually wrapped tea bags (in my toiletry bag, slightly eww!) and top up by pinching them if the hotel room has them on the tea tray. It’s also a good way to rehydrate before bed, I’d I’ve been hitting the corporate entertaining hard ;)

5- treats- depends on how busy/skint I am and can consist of a trashy magazine and a bag of crisps for the train journey, or like tonight, just after payday, with quite a few hours to kill on my own, something fun to drink and a multitude of snacks- my treats of choice on this fine evening have been gin and tonic in a can, jaffa cakes, crisps, a chicken burrito and Look magazine! Yes, you could go and sit in the hotel bar, but where’s the fun in sitting in a bar on your own when you could be tucked up in bed with junk food and booze in a tin?! No competition really!

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Now, time for some trashy Friday night tv, a quick press of my outfit for tomorrow and some jaffa cakes, before I tuck myself up with some minty tea and shut eye, ready for a Saturday hard at work

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