14 Items You Should Always Pack for a Business Trip

These items are must-haves for conducting business on the road.

Young businessman pinning a name tag to his jacket
By SHARE

"In our store, we sell these items in a blend material, so they're washable, and very breathable, and when they pack they fold to nothing," Schreckinger adds. Females might also want to pack a complementary skirt for further variance in wardrobe.

7. Two pair of shoes. An extended trip might require you pack even more footwear, but keep in mind that you'll need at least two pair for even a short stay. Those two would include a comfortable set for walking around during the day, and a slightly more dressy pair for important dinners with clients. For ladies, "I'd suggest a pair of flat shoes that can be worn each day, and then ones with a medium heel to wear at night," Schreckinger says.

[In Pictures: 6 Summer Office Attire No-Nos.]

8. A phone cord and extra battery. Admit it, you're not going to forget to pack your cell phone; it's glued to your palm. But when away on business, your phone becomes even more valuable. It's the fastest, easiest way for your boss or business contact to get in touch with you. So make sure to also pack your phone cord and an extra phone battery, just in case you don't have time or access to an outlet to charge up.

9.Your laptop. Feel free to insert "iPad," "Android tablet," or "Windows tablet" into this slot, if you use one of those as your mobile computer of choice. The point is, you need to have one on you. Don't get caught having to rely on whatever philistine computer and operating system the business center provides. Not only might the hotel's machines not have the software you need, but you won't have the freedom to use them around the clock. Save yourself the hassle. 

10. A wireless card. Wi-Fi access in hotel rooms is a great privilege, but it's not always free. This isn't the end of the world if you're away at play, but it could be a costly inconvenience when traveling on business. All major phone carriers sell Internet cards that are usually compatible with both Windows and Apple operating systems. Another bonus: A wireless card will often provide access for more than one Wi-Fi enabled device, whereas the hotel might charge per computer. 

11. A USB flash drive. Keep presentations and reports at your fingertips by stowing a flash drive in your pants pocket. Or, according to Misner, you could also use a USB device when networking. "This is such a handy tool," he says. "Let's say again that I'm talking to someone and need to transfer some information that I have to them or vice versa."

12. Portable tools of your trade. Photographers must pack film, filters, and tripods. Architects might need protractors, poster tubes, and drafting paper. Whatever your trade, you should invest in a few easy-to-carry versions of your most-used tools. Either that, or bring along items that will help you display your work to potential clients. For example, Misner is the co-author of Business Networking and Sex and also does both text and video blogging. Some of the portable items he travels with include a flip video (to showcase his videos on the fly), a camera, and a laser pointer (for giving presentations).

[See Are Your Gadgets Ruining Your Work Mojo?]

13. A multi-charger. Your smartphone, laptop, and electric razor aren't powered with air. But there are only so many electrical outlets in any given hotel room. Consolidate your charging by plugging up a multi-charger that can regenerate several devices from one socket.

14. Carry-on luggage with four wheels. The above items probably won't take up too much space, so you might be able to cram them all into a carry-on bag. Who wants to pay extra baggage fees anyway?

There's another reason to go the carry-on route, however. You'll save time in and out of the airport if you don't have to wait on checked luggage, which could be invaluable if you're only in town for a brief business meeting. Schreckinger suggests opting for a carry-on suitcase with four-wheels to save even more time and make you even more mobile. Also consider investing in high-quality luggage, so that it can withstand the bumps and bruises from being jostled in an overhead bin.