If you’re going to be traveling for any upcoming conferences or conventions, it's important to keep yourself healthy and organized, two things that can fall to the wayside if you don’t make an effort. Use our tips below to avoid burnout and disorder when you're away from home.
Tips for staying healthy
Drink plenty of water. Carry a large bottle of water with you to avoid dehydration, which can lead to headaches, irritability, and mental confusion. You want to stay alert and be on your game to get the most out of your time at these events. Believe it or not, staying hydrated will help!
Cut alcohol consumption. While you want to increase your water intake, you’ll want to avoid consuming too much alcohol, as it can weaken your immune system. Enjoy one or two drinks and then switch to water.
Get enough sleep. This is easier said than done since many conventions and conferences host events all day and into the evening. But staying rested is key for your health. When your body lacks sleep, your immune system weakens and you become more susceptible to illness. Look at your schedule and identify the events you most want to attend, decide which sessions you can skip, and make getting enough rest each night a priority.
Wash your hands frequently. With all the crowds at conferences and conventions, it’s impossible to avoid germs. That's why it’s important to wash your hands often, particularly before eating and touching your face or mouth (and especially after shaking several hands). Since it might not always be convenient to get to a bathroom, carry an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with you.
Bring disinfectant wipes. The common cold virus can live up to three hours on surfaces and objects. Have disinfectant wipes on hand to clean airline trays, seats, and remote controls.
Tips for staying organized
Pack smart. Familiarize yourself with the luggage guidelines for your airline and know which items you can and can’t pack in carry-on luggage. Once you know this information, decide what bags to bring and make a list of items to pack using a good ol' pad and pen or a notes app such as Evernote. Roll your clothes to save space (and prevent wrinkles), and use packing cubes to help organize your belongings. Whatever you do, don’t wait until the last minute to pack, as you're more likely to forget something.
Bring an extra memory card, batteries, and chargers. It’s not a lot of extra weight to carry around, and you’ll thank yourself when you need to charge your phone and don’t have to go back to your room or have to wait until the end of the day to do so.
Figure out your daily schedule in advance. Determining which panels and events you want to attend in advance can save you time and help you avoid unnecessary headaches such as figuring out where to go at the last minute. Print out the schedule and make note of the events, speakers, and other happenings that you don’t want to miss and highlight them. Keep this schedule handy throughout your trip. If you have the option to pre-register for certain classes or activities, do it!
Know directions, locations, and times. Find out all the logistics ahead of time — where your hotel is, how to get there from the airport, and, if events and classes are taking place elsewhere, get directions, determine how you'll get there, and how much time it will take to do so. Visit your event's website and print out the map, event times, and any other important information to bring with you.
Follow these tips and enjoy your experience at all your conventions and conferences instead of getting sick or stressing out because you didn’t plan properly. Safe travels!