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In many ways, smartphones have created a work environment where employees have a tough time completely disconnecting. But in many other ways, these connected products have made our lives far easier, and far more organized. One of the longstanding dreads for those who routinely travel for business is the art of filing expenses. Thankfully, I’ve got a few recommended apps that can make the process far easier.
It’s not often that Microsoft launches an entirely new operating system, but that’s what happened recently with the introduction of Windows 8. Specifically, the user interface was overhauled completely to focus on “tiles,” and Microsoft engineered this system to work nicely with touch panels. Yes, Windows 7 machines can be found with touch panels, but those looking for a far more polished experience should be eying one of the fresher alternatives.
I discussed the pros and cons of Microsoft’s own Surface RT tablet in a prior piece, but the fact remains: some business travelers simply aren’t in a place where they’re able to ditch a full-fledged notebook. For those of you out there in need of a laptop refresh, and wondering which of the latest and greatest will give you the best Windows 8 experience, I’ve got a few recommendations. Read more
It’s that time of year! And by “time of year,” we’re talking about standing in endless lines, catching untold illnesses, and wondering where all of those spare vacation days went. But it doesn’t have to be that way. If you’re on the hunt for the perfect gift for that special someone, you can save yourself tons of time and stress by deciding on a product ahead of time. For the busy business traveler in your life, we’ve got a list of gifts just waiting to be wrapped.
ECBC: Lance Daypack ($150): Most business travelers will tell you that they prefer to carry all of their essentials in as few bags as possible. To that end, having a suitable backpack is paramount. The ECBC: Lance Daypack is a multifaceted pack that should be useful in a variety of situations. It’s roomier than the exterior leads you to believe, it’s understated so as not draw attention to itself, and it’s constructed from water-repelling ballistic nylon. It’s also got a breathable back padding design, and the TSA-compliant FastPass laptop compartment makes getting through airport security that much easier. Read more
You’ve finished your book. You’ve beaten your Angry Birds high score four times. You’ve properly acquainted yourself with the plane’s emergency protocol, and made a mental note to commission a portrait of your cat, Miss Precious Perfect, in elegant 17th century garb. You’ve exhausted your entertainment options, and you’re ready for your flight’s conclusion. Problem is, you’re nowhere near the tarmac. You’re still sandwiched between a wailing baby and a portly armrest-hogger, 30,000 feet in the air, hours away from your destination.
Nothing is worse than boredom setting in on a long flight. Fortunately, a new initiative by JetBlue will help alleviate mid-flight monotony. The airline recently announced they would offer onboard Wi-Fi, beginning in the first quarter of 2013. The airline is not exactly breaking new ground with the Wi-Fi offer: Their passengers have been twiddling their thumbs as competitors Virgin America, Delta, and American Airlines, among others, have provided the service for years. JetBlue has previously offered limited Wi-Fi, allowing flyers to check their email, instant message, and visit certain shopping sites. Read more
We all know the feeling: annoyed by the thought of going on another business trip, and frustrated by the airport crowds on a Monday. If you let it, the business travel routine can become overwhelming and eventually contribute to burnout. But in many cases, there’s a happy medium that can be struck if both you and your company are flexible.
In most cases, business travelers are asked to fly out on Monday and return on Friday. But in laying down those rigid flight rules, businesses frequently lock themselves into paying top dollar in airfare. Moreover, many flights end up costing more when flying in the day before a major convention. The annual Consumer Electronics Show, for example, forces rates to Las Vegas through the roof on the two days directly preceding the event’s start. If you fly in 3 or more days in advance, you can save a bundle. Read more
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