• Stacia

How to Live in a Hotel and not Hate It

Maybe I was crazy. Or maybe, I was overly idealistic. Or maybe, i just wanted adventure. Whatever it was, I took a job with 80-100% travel right out of college. So, while everyone else was getting engaged, buying a house, and otherwise plunging into adulthood, I was not. No, instead I was living out of a suitcase; gaining status with airlines, hotels, and rental car companies; and posting Instagram pics that made everyone back home somehow think I was living a fab jet setter life. Here's the truth: being a road warrior can be great. Traveling all the time can be great. However, it's not all sunshine and rainbows and good 'Grams. If you're considering joining the road warriors, here's how to make sure you don't end up miserable. 

1.  Stay active. 

When I first took the job, I was warned about the travel twenty. That's the twenty pounds you gain from  traveling. Most hotels have gyms, and many local gyms will offer short term passes. If neither of those are your style, there are tons of apps with workouts on them that you could do in a hotel room with no equipment. Whatever you decide, make sure you're moving your body on a regular basis.  

2.  Boost your immune system. 

Look, it's no secret that people travel sick. We've all been guilty. So why not do yourself a favor and give your immune system that extra boost. Bring wetwipes on the plane and use them to wipe down the tray table and arm rests; take airborne or a similar product. There's no shame in wanting to protect yourself and there's nothing quiet as miserable as being sick while traveling. 

3. Find something consistent. 

For me, it was running. My hotels would at minimum have a treadmill. However, I've also had projects where we all got together in the lobby or in one room to watch a certain TV show weekly. Other projects we had Wine Wednesday or Taco Tuesday sometimes it's the one day a week you do your nails or call your friend in another state or write a post card. Whatever it is, make sure you have at least one thing that is the same if you are going to frequently be having so much else change. 

4. Check your bag - at the hotel. 

Now, this only works if you are traveling to the same place every week for multiple weeks in a row. Over pack the first week, then leave your bag with the hotel over the weekend. Bring a smaller bag that you can take back and forth with you. 

5.  Pick a Time Zone. 

I live in the Central Time Zone, but much of my work is done on the west coast. It's great when I'm in the office because I can get lots done in the morning before the emails from my client start in. However, being there and back on planes can be exhausting. My normal onsite wake up Time is 5 AM, and my normal go to bed time is around 9-10 PM. So, when I'm home, I just shift my hours to get up at 7 AM and I go to bed between 11 PM and Midnight. It can be difficult when it's the travel day and I don't get to sleep by that time or when I need to be up earlier while at home, but it does help keep my body from completely hating me when I come back from the west. 

The travel life is not for everyone, but when done right, it can be so rewarding in many ways. Check back soon for tips on making the most of your frequent flyer miles and hotel points. 

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