Road Warrior SmarTips

Road Warrior SmarTips:

If you travel all the time you soon find out that some of the biggest challenges are mastering the smallest tasks. Do it well, you're moving fast. Fail, and you waste a lot of time on meaningless tasks.

#1: Finding Your Car

I used to waste a lot of time wandering around hotel parking lots looking for my car, and my home airport doing the same. My first attempt at a fast solution for hotel parking lots was hitting the "open trunk" button on the rental car key. Over time I found that if I was up and out early enough--before most others staying at the hotel--this worked great. Hit the button, watch for an opening trunk and head for "my" car. Now do that at 8:00 in the morning and you find yourself out there with a whole bunch of other people doing the same thing, with trunks popping up in a funny parking lot car trunk dance number. 

Solution? So simple it's hard to believe it took so long to figure it out. When I park at the end of the day I put the location into the calendar in my smart phone for the following morning: "Out the front hotel door, turn right, two rows back, second car from left." Also, when I park my own car at the airport before leaving town, I go to the arrival time of my returning flight in the calendar and post the location there. 

#2 Finding Your Hotel Room

Same thing. Travel enough and one of the single biggest challenges is remembering which room you are in at the end of the day. It got to the point where I was hitting so many cities in so few days that I was often going to a hotel room in a new hotel with the room number from the hotel I was staying in the night before in another city. I met a lot of nice people this way when they would open their door after hearing my key in their lock (and a few grumpy people too) but it was terribly inefficient and often embarrassing. Now I put the room number in my smart phone. The only downside? I don't meet as many new people on the road any more.