How to Stay Productive During Holiday Travel

Traveling during the holiday season is stressful enough. Add to that meeting a work deadline at the same time and you've got a recipe for disaster. Travel doesn't have to mean wasted work time, but it does take some preparation to stay connected, organized, powered and protected. See how to maximize your time on the jetway and beyond with these productive tips.

 

Stay Connected

Despite the ubiquity of Wi-Fi on trains, buses and in airports, their networks can be slow, unreliable and expensive. If you have a critical deadline or a last minute meeting and need to ensure timely access, it's best to take matters into your own hands. 

Use portable routers and smartphones to create a personal Wi-Fi hot spot. Be sure to do a hot spot dry run ahead of time so you don't lose work time at the airport. Don't overlook mobile apps and other software that work offline like Google Drive and Dropbox that provide the option to put files in "offline mode" so you can review them without a connection.

 

Get Organized

Begin your travel planning with an essential packing list. Things to consider include: connecting cables for smartphones, laptops, tablets and other necessary electronics, power cords, portable battery backups, USB keys and flash memory cards as needed and mobile hotspots. You can also ensure your gadgets stay powered and protected with battery charging cases for phones and tablets.

 

Checking ahead with the airline can also keep you connected to power sources for your electronic devices. Web sites such as Routehappy and SeatGuru offer information about in-flight amenities, including power plugs, USB connectors and Wi-Fi. 

Stay Protected

What good is a powered laptop if it's been roughed up by airport security? A good rule of thumb is always to carry on your essential tech rather than risk it getting lost in baggage claim or worse. A carry-on bag with padded protection for a laptop is the best way to go. Your valuables stay with you and everything remains accessible under the seat in front of you. 

Don't be tempted to store your work gear in a suitcase-style carry-on. Access is more difficult from an overhead compartment, and you may be asked at the gate to check a bag of this type on a heavily booked commuter flight.

 

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