Smart ways to pack for travelling
Victorinox deluxe wheeled travel bag - $318.
Technology and clever design are the business traveller's new best friends, thanks to a multitude of gadgets and accessories that are smaller, sleeker and lighter.
The likes of iPads, iPhones, Kindles, notebooks, smart gadgets and versatile, lightweight luggage have become must-have items for frequently-flying executives.
Dianne Hill, a consultant and director of Sector Research, travels twice a month. Packing for work trips usually centres on the requirements of meetings and functions.
"When I pack I start by thinking about what meetings, dinners or functions I need to attend. I check the weather and any activities I can do, and if I can use a gym," she says.
"I've got a large suitcase, it's a Samsonite. It's on wheels and easy to handle. A small overnight doesn't always work, by the time you pack business attire, evening wear, sports clothes, boarding papers, toiletries and shoes; the carry-on is too small."
On board the plane, Hill carries her iPad, charger, iPhone and her work documents.
"I carry all that I need for work on the plane. They're small and light. If my luggage gets lost, I have everything that I need for the meetings."
Hill uses her iPad to connect with her work colleagues from her hotel room. She links into her meetings with the hotel's Wi-Fi - typically without needing to use the hotel's boardroom or video conferencing.
"I was in Hong Kong recently and I had to video conference into a board meeting in Sydney. It was easy to hook into the hotel's Wi-Fi on my iPad. I didn't use the hotel's conference room or any equipment. I connected my iPad through the Wi-Fi and sat in my room and screened into the Sydney boardroom. My colleagues in Sydney could hear and see me clearly."
Nathan Barrie, founder of online travel store traveluniverse.com.au says the perfect carry-on bag for business travellers is one that is light and with enough compartments to hold accessories.
"A business traveller who is away for a couple of nights can fit everything into carry-on baggage. It's a worthy investment because they're specifically designed for travel and are lighter and smaller to meet the weight allowance," Barrie says.
One popular travel bag is the deluxe wheeled travel bag from Victorinox, priced at $318.00.
"It's great for short overnight business trips. People don't want the hassle of wasting time to check in luggage. This bag fits domestic carry-on restrictions. It also features a strap and clip system, so you don't need to carry your coat and computer separately."
If you don't want a carry-on bag then the Werks Traveller four-garment bag will keep business attire in shape and wrinkle free ($134.62).
As for travel gadgets, Barrie says the Jacksons portal power board and USB charger ($28.75) is a handy accessory if you're stuck in a hotel room with too few power points.
"When you're in a hotel room or somewhere where there aren't enough power points or with limited sockets, this gadget has a double adaptor which contains a short extension cable and two USB charging ports. You can charge your notebook, iPad and iPhone at the same time," Barrie says.
A small torch can be invaluable when navigating a foreign hotel room in the dark. If you are travelling with checked luggage you can pack the handy torch and army knife ($29.95).
Portable keyboards for iPads mean travellers no longer need to carry heavy laptops. The Kensington KeyFolio Bluetooth keyboard case ($67.97) protects the iPad from wear and tear and is easy to set up.
For female travellers, the City Safe secure handbag offers security and two sizes ($84.88). Compartments and zippers are hidden away to prevent pick pockets.
Australian company Sea to Summit specialises in lightweight, durable and water-resistant travel products. National sales manager Rob McSporran says corporate travellers want accessories that are functional and look sharp.
"With carry-on luggage you're limited to seven kilos, so the professional wants something that looks smart and does the job. If you're only travelling for 24 to 48 hours, you don't need a lot."
"Our TravellingLight range is lightweight and stylish. We have a day pack which is light and weather resistant. Accessories like the shirt folding bag and shoe bag, take up limited space. Eighty per cent of the products in this line weigh less than 85 grams" he adds
Sea to Summit also have a range of GoToob dispensers. Non-drip and designed to meet travel restrictions and recommended for shampoos, lotions, suntan oil, liquid soaps and condiments.
"The last thing you want is to find your business clothes spoilt. You won't have to worry about liquids spilling over your clothes," he says
All GoToobs products are approved for airplane carry-on and are food-safe. Another popular product is a water bottle that emits UV light, killing off bacteria and purifying the water.
"Just because you're staying at a five-star hotel doesn't mean the water is always safe," McSporran says.
Do you own a must-have travelling accessory?