Has your career lead you to new and interesting locations rife with opportunity? If so, you may have noticed that despite having a reliable morning routing at home, packing and putting together your professional look at a hotel - or even at the airport - is another story. Here are some tips for maintaining your impeccable style while you're away on business.
Packing is the first, and arguably the most important, step in dressing well for business travel. Consider the climate of your destination. Is it warm? Pack jackets made from lightweight and breathable fabrics, like sun reflecting "cool wool" as well as linen blends. Cotton, while a great warm weather fabric, tends to wrinkle. With that said, pack non-fussy garments that fall easily and naturally. Is your destination colder? Bring warmer thick wool suits.
Another thing to be mindful of when packing is your itinerary. How long will you be staying? What will you be doing? Pack one pair of underwear and socks for each day of travel; however, it is wise to throw in a few extra. Bring an extra pair of shoes for any non-business activities, such as a game of golf. Think about creating an outfit as a whole; bring matching jackets and pants as well as coordinated dress shirts. Neutral colors are a safe bet when mixing and matching garments. If a meeting calls for more casual attire, consider packing high-quality t-shirts or a polo, a sports jacket, and a pair of crisp dark jeans.
Buy a portable stain remover; these are often the size of a marker and will fit easily into your carry-on bag. Travel-size toiletries are also a must. Keep them in a simple zip-lock bag to save on space. Consider water-tight bags for potentially messier liquid items, like mouthwash. Also make sure to pack your shoes in re-sealable bags, so you will not transfer dirt onto your clothing. Any items that need to be hung or require special attention should be kept in a garment bag. Infuse your luggage with scented fabric softener sheets to keep your clothes smelling fresh.
Select a comfortable, yet classy outfit for the way there. Ensure that it is also wrinkle-resistant. If you are traveling by air, consider wearing your bulkiest items (heavy jacket, pants, etc.). Planes tend to be cool and you will also be saving valuable packing space in your luggage.
Choose a briefcase as your carry-on bag. Keep your electronics (laptop, phone, digital camera, etc.) in it as well as any essential work materials. This way, your most important items will be safe and easily accessible at all times.