Mar 23, 2017, 12:23 PM
With so many disparate factors to consider, making arrangements for international business travel can seem overwhelming. However, by following a few simple guidelines, you can ensure that you have a productive and rewarding trip.
Investigate the financial logistics
All international airports have currency exchange bureaus, and many full-service hotels will exchange limited amounts of cash as well, but these options often carry significant fees.
If you are going to need a decent reserve of currency for your trip, consider checking with your bank at home. They may have to order foreign currency from an off-site location, but if you plan in advance and approach them with enough time, this is often a cheaper option.
Keep in mind that credit card acceptance can vary greatly across nations and regions. Also, if you will be using a company credit card, know that many smaller, international merchants only accept Visa and MasterCard, so you may have to make other arrangements. If you’re using your own personal credit card, be sure to check online or with your bank before your trip on the card’s foreign transaction fees.
Cash availability (ATMs)
If you plan on withdrawing additional cash during your trip, it can be helpful to know the availability of ATMs at your destination. Most large banks have partnerships with international organizations, meaning you can often use their ATMs to avoid withdrawal fees. Check your bank’s website for more details.
Create an itinerary you can use as a guideline
To get the most out of your trip, decide beforehand if you have time to split your schedule between business and leisure. If so, block out specific times for work and sightseeing, and try to stick to them as much as possible.
Check your electronic needs
If your phone doesn’t currently have an international plan included in your service, you may want to activate one in order to reduce roaming charges. Additionally, make sure you have an international power adapter specific to the region you will be visiting, and check that it fits your devices’ chargers.
Plan your luggage based on need and capacity
Your employer’s travel policy may not cover extras such as baggage fees, so you may need to pack as lightly as possible, while simultaneously allowing enough space for your business clothes to avoid serious wrinkling.
Be sure to also research the types of clothing that are culturally appropriate in your destination so your attire doesn’t draw unwanted attention to yourself.
Make your health and safety a priority
The costs and logistics of health care are unique to every county, and trusting that your domestic health insurance policy will cover you internationally could leave you in dire medical or financial straits.
Purchasing a short-term travel medical insurance plan from IMG can ensure you are covered in the event of a medical emergency during your trip.
You should also investigate options for travel insurance, which can protect your trip investment, while providing emergency medical and dental benefits.
Whatever your preference, be sure to research your options so you can worry less and experience more on your next business trip.