With the prices of airline tickets rising, we’ve crossed into a moment in history where choosing a charter bus for a corporate trip makes perfect business sense. Charter buses are well-equipped to be converted into mobile meeting rooms, while also keeping you and your team connected to clients while on the move.
When the team has earned it, a charter bus can also be a source of some well deserved fun. Big screens can be set up for passengers to watch movies, providing both entertainment and valuable team building while on the road.
Here are some tips for ensuring that your business trip goes off without a hitch.
Tip #1 – Comfort First
When it comes to bus travel, ditch the heels, take off the tie and allow yourself to be comfortable. Even if you’re on a working bus with clear business goals and presentations, dress in a way that’s going to keep you comfortable for the long haul.
In general, this means non-restrictive, soft, loose clothing. Layers are also important, because the air conditioning on the bus contrasted with the heat outside may otherwise throw you off. Additionally, slippers or comfortable, breathable shoes are a major bonus for ensuring comfort during your bus business trip. There are countless distractions to contend with during everyday life, don’t let uncomfortable clothing deter you from closing a deal.
Tip #2 – Set Some Goals
Most companies that utilize a charter bus for business trips will choose a vehicle with all the necessary bells and whistles to keep you focused on your work. So, prepare ahead of time. Set clear, concrete goals about what you want to accomplish during the bus ride and make sure you have everything you need to meet those goals. Don’t let one or two haphazardly forgotten documents hamper your ability to get things done.
If you’re planning to get work done during your bus business trip, make sure to bring your laptop. We all know what you can do with your new iPhone X, but frame up the bus in your mind as a mobile office. The vehicle should have wifi (but it never hurts to ask to make sure ahead of time), which means you’ll be able to continue to monitor emails, research online, and complete any other online tasks.
Some buses will also have laptop interfaces with onboard monitors for you to take advantage of.
Tip #3 – Prepare for Moving Meetings
Not only can the bus function as personal office space, you can also transform it into a mobile board room. DVD players and monitors, as well as a public address system on board, make it easy to conduct in-depth meetings and talk strategy for next quarter. However, because you can’t just run back to your office to grab the thumb drive with the presentation on it, make sure you have a backup and are planning ahead.
Establishing a presentation schedule ahead of time can ensure everyone is adequately prepared for the onboard meetings. In order to increase team bonding, as well as keeping everyone engaged, the presentations should be subjects for which all those present are stakeholders. If that’s not the case, clearly identify who needs to be part of the presentation and bring them to the front or back of the bus to conduct the meeting. This physical separation of parties will allow other staff members to be productive in their own ways.
Tip #4 – Stay Focused
Noise cancelling headphones are worth their weight in gold on business bus rides. Though you’re certainly not going to have to deal with a crying child behind you like you might on an airplane, an overly talkative – and bored – seat mate might still make it necessary to pop on your headphones and get into the zone. Headphones send the clear signal that you’re busy with work. Check out top rated Bose noise cancelling headphones or rival V-Moda headphones for the best in drowning out a noisy co-worker.
Tip #5 – All Work No Play, No Way!
Remember those big screens you were thinking about using for a presentation to drag everyone through the mud about last quarter’s decline in revenue? Why not cut the team a break and provide some entertainment instead. The monitors are usually hooked up to a DVD player, so bring out some classics to build morale – why not give Office Space or Wolf of Wallstreet some air time?
If entertainment isn’t going to be provided, make sure you bring something to keep yourself occupied. In addition to your work laptop, you can pack books, magazines, a tablet, and even some DVDs.
Tip #6 – Be Considerate
No matter if you’re working, playing, or just trying to take a nap, be considerate of your co-workers on the bus. It can be a long ride in a fairly small space – no matter how luxurious the bus. Basic courtesies go a long way:
● Keep your voice at a reasonable level
● Keep your shoes on (if your feet might stink!)
● Make sure you put ample deodorant on before getting on the bus
● Don’t play your personal music or videos without headphones
● Be kind to your fellow bus mates
Also, if possible, avoid making business phone calls while on the bus. It’s not fair to your co-workers who are a captive audience, listening to you pitch and rattle on to a client. Having a conversation with many others present is also not fair to the client. Schedule important calls a couple hours before and after the bus ride if you have to follow up with clients while on the trip.
Tip #7 – Charge Your Tools
You’ve probably packed loads of electronics for the trip to keep you busy and entertained, but did you remember to fully charge them, as well as pack their chargers and a spare power bank? It’s also not a bad idea to plan to pack a few personal snacks–and maybe even some to share–as well as a travel pillow.
Whether your business bus trip is all work or all play – we recommend work hard, play hard – it should be clear that chartering a bus offers a great opportunity for bonding and moving forward as a team.
Be prepared by knowing what the plan is ahead of time and giving everyone else plenty of notice. This way, they can be ready to provide productive responses during mobile meetings, have everything they need for presentations, or at least show up with their laptops and a travel pillow for equal parts work and relaxation.
Want to talk details about how to charter a business bus for your next foray into corporate travel as an organization? Talk to the experts at Western Motorcoach to get started!