Business travel can be exhilarating, fun and challenging. However, despite all the great experiences you get to enjoy on the road, you also have to deal with not being in your own bed and the lack of sleep that accompanies that. Add long hours, little access to fresh foods, and of course, time away from family and friends, and it’s no wonder the Harvard Business Review found a strong correlation between the frequency of business travel and a wide range of physical and behavioral health risks.
It takes effort to be a healthy road warrior, but it is so worth it. Feeling good while traveling for work leads to more productivity, better output, a superior work product, and an all-around happier life. Here’s our business travel wellness routine:
Stay Hydrated – Drink at least 1.5 liters of water every day, whether or not you’re traveling. When flying, drink at least half a liter of water for every hour in the air. As a bonus, this forces you to get up and move while on the plane, helping to lower the risk of blood clots.
Move Your Body – Make it a point to be up early enough so that you can exercise at least 40 minutes every morning before 7 a.m. A good road warrior workout should involve a balance of high-intensity cardio and free weight exercises to keep metabolic levels up during the day. You should either use the hotel gym, or simply pack exercise bands to use in your hotel room in case time is tight.
Rev Up Your Mind – After you get out of bed and exercise, do some motivational reading, listen to TED Talks or spend time in spiritual reflection to put yourself in the right frame of mind for the day. Stay off social media during this time and challenge your brain instead!
Refresh Your Body – Get at least seven hours of sleep every night, because your brain and body needs restorative sleep in order to work well. To get that sleep, practice good sleep hygiene: turn off the TV in your hotel room and set your phone on silent so you’re not awakened by a 2 a.m. email
While there’s little doubt that the dining inside your hotel or resort will be top-notch, you should experience the full range of culinary experiences Mexico offers. This country is home to arguably the greatest culture of street food in the world, and tasting it is as simple as a quick stop between shops or museums. While there isn’t enough room in your stomach to try every single cart or stand, here are a few quintessential antojitos you need to savor.
Tacos – Perhaps nothing is more iconic of Mexican cuisine than tacos. Of course, these aren’t the mass-produced replicas of chain restaurants; here they’re the real deal. While variations exist based on which state of Mexico you’re in, every taco will likely consist of a warm corn tortilla (often hand-made), tender meat, and a smattering of fresh vegetables, fruits and salsas.
Tamales – Originating in Oaxaca, tamales today can be found and enjoyed all throughout Mexico. Composed of a thick steamed corn dough wrapped in either banana leaves or corn husks, the true treat of tamales is the stuffing: you can find anything from chicken mole to cheese to sweet pineapple inside.
Sopes and Gorditas – Sopes and gorditas are essentially two sides of the same coin: the same delicious corn dough with slight variations in preparation. Gorditas are when the corn dough is fried, then stuffed with meats, beans and cheeses and topped off with delectable salsas and creams. Sopes are the exact same thing, except all of the stuffings go on top of the corn patty, thus making them “toppings.” It may seem like a trivial difference, but you’ll be surprised at how difficult it is to choose between the two!
Tostadas – At first glance, Tostadas look like a mix between a taco and a pizza, but there’s more flavor there than meets the eye. The base is a crisp, salty tortilla that is gratuitously topped with anything from pork to cows’ foot to ceviche or fresh fish. Those traveling to Oaxaca should be sure to try a tlayuda, a huge tostada smothered in chocolate mole sauce, then topped with a salad and meat of your choice before finally being sprinkled with world-famous stringy Oaxaca cheese.
Elotes and Esquites – Elotes and Esquites are essentially the same food, prepared differently. Elotes is sweetcorn, served on a stick and smothered in mayonnaise, cream and chili. Esquites is sweetcorn cut from the cob, mixed with cream, lime juice, mayonnaise and chili inside a plastic cup. Either version is by far and away one of the tastiest options for enjoying Mexican street food.
Comotes – If you’re in Mexico City, you’ll want to try camotes fresh from a stand or cart. Camotes are plantains and sweet potatoes steamed, and then served with strawberry jam and condensed milk. If you can’t tell where they are by the crowds they draw, then listen for the distinct whistle of steam escaping the pot.
The pros and cons of taking a red-eye flight are obvious: you arrive at your destination in the morning and you don’t lose a whole day traveling. However, you’re too exhausted to be productive because you spent the previous night shifting positions in your uncomfortable airline seat. Here are a few tips to make sure you leave your next red-eye flight somewhat rested so you can work the next day.
Beat Jet Lag in Advance – Try to advance your body clock when traveling eastbound. You will have to wake up earlier and go to bed earlier than you normally would. Do the reverse when headed westbound. Try this before your trip so you have a better chance of being into the right time zone when you deplane.
Choose Your Seat Carefully – The right seat is critical. Avoid seats located near the restroom and the seats that don’t recline. Sitting in the aisle makes it likely you’ll get an elbow injury. If you sleep on a certain side of the bed at home, choose a window seat on the side of the plane that provides you with a more comfortable experience and maybe some additional time to sleep.
Eat Light & Right – Look for the healthiest, leanest meal you can find, preferably at the gate before you board. Avoid spicy foods that might cause an upset stomach. In-flight meals are overly processed and salty, so they may make you feel bloated or more dehydrated during the flight.
Hydrate Like It’s Your Job – Drink water, and skip the alcohol and caffeine. The pressurized cabin usually leaves passengers a little dehydrated, so buy a large bottle of water at the gate before you board the plane and drink water steadily throughout the flight.
Come Prepared to Sleep Well – Bring a comfortable travel pillow, sleep mask, earplugs or noise-canceling earphones—worth every penny to frequent fliers. Take off your watch and accessories to remind yourself that it’s bedtime. And be sure to buckle your seat belt over your blanket so that the flight attendant doesn’t need to disturb you to check it.
Freshen Up – Bring a toiletry bag with all of the usual items you use to get ready in the morning, including a toothbrush, mouthwash, deodorant, hairbrush and a fresh set of clothes. You will feel mentally more prepared to tackle the new day after freshening up.
Book through Us – Of course, the best way to sleep on an airplane is to get one of those roomy seats up front. Our agency has all the right connections to improve your air travel experience, so contact us before your next flight.
For true beer lovers, the highlight of any vacation is hoisting pints of the local stouts, IPAs and lagers of their vacation destination. They will not be disappointed at these destinations, where the quality and variety of the beer attracts millions every year.
Munich, Germany – No beer bucket list would be complete without Munich, the place where millions of barley buffs converge every year for the 16-day festival called Oktoberfest. But even if you can’t make it during that time, you can still enjoy the city’s legendary beer gardens and the famed 425-year-old brewery Hofbräuhaus.
Montreal, Canada – For decades now, Montreal has been a mecca for brewpubs, perfecting the art of microbrewery. Beer brewed here is often defined by its color—blonde, rousse, ambrée or noir—than by its style at such places as the world-famous Le Cheval Blanc.
Amsterdam, Netherlands – Home to globally popular brands Heineken and Amstel, Amsterdam is a town steeped in beer history. Locals like to linger long over their pints of pils at neighbourhood watering holes called brown bars, where the darkened interiors inspire profound conversations.
Dublin, Ireland – Guinness. Need we say more? Fine…inside the Guinness Storehouse, Ireland’s top tourist attraction, you’ll get a grand history lesson along with a perfectly poured pint. Afterward, soak in the city’s thriving pub culture at The Porterhouse, Dublin’s first brewpub, to sample their homemade porters.
Brussels, Belgium – This is the capital of Belgian beer, the award-winning ale that has been traditionally brewed by monks since the Middle Ages. Here, beer aficionados debate over the quality of their lambics at charming cafe-bars called estaminets.