As summer draws to a close, I often ask myself how I can run two businesses and still escape. Travel research shows that most of us Americans are more likely to take a vacation. The best solution I have seen is to combine business with pleasure on every overseas trip.
Having signed up for a conference in Dubai, I was intrigued by the modern Medes, while also wanting to know more about its ancient culture. After some investigation, I found a flight to Dubai through Jordan with a few days' stop.
Without giving up on the opportunity, I arranged an airport pick-up and booked a five-star hotel located in the chic part of the city of Amman with a selection of restaurants near and inside the hotel. Having studied Arabic, I had the pleasure of applying it, even though the Egyptian courses I studied were quite different from the Jordanian dialects.
As a crossroads, Jordan has a remarkable history, from the ancient Jabata to Alexander, Roman, Roman Empire, and Arab culture. Beyond its historic monument, Jordan has a vibrant contemporary culture. Shortly after arriving, I saw this first hand, a local wedding party, that traveled across the hotel lobby to celebrate with dancing and music.
The next day, I took a day trip to explore the Roman ruins of Amman. I stood high above the city, listening to the call of the Macedonians to pray. With a short stay, I spent most of the day driving the driver as a local guide for about 12 hours a day. Fortunately, the distance was very close, with the next day's exploration centered on the Roman temple at Jaras. Its popular history began in the time of Alexander the Great, but fell to Rome under Pompeii in the first century AD. The White House With the mild October weather, my guide and I then ate the vineyards surrounded by vineyards. There are no tourist buses in sight!
The next day's trek to the Byzantine Madiba ended at the Dead Sea. Famous for its spa treatments, I just had time to take a look at the sea before turning my stairs to Amman.
The best savings mean a full day in the city of Phatra, built by the Nabata. Featured in the films of Indiana Jones and others, and in the mystery of the best-selling British author Agatha Christie, it is a World Heritage site competing with the Pyramid. In addition to the main treasury, there is a series of small buildings and an outdoor café and craft center located conveniently for sale. Of course, the tourist route back to the entrance has to be on the camel's back, which gives a great picture.
After a busy week, it was time for me to head to Dubai for a briefing and sightseeing later. Dubai is famous for its unexpected amenities such as air-conditioned bus stops, apartment development and luxury hotels. For me as a “moderate skier,” I was intrigued by the indoor ski resort located in the local mall. With the limited expectations of a real workout, I know this will make for a great story and the perfect place for holiday card photos. After a party of Southern Fried Chicken in the Mall of the Emirates Food Court, I covered my summer dress with colorful ski dresses and boarded up a ski and pole in hand. After a few runs, it was closed for hot chocolate near St. Louis. The nearby Moritz Café and the perfect end to my Mistress shop.
As a woman traveling solo in Media, I practiced two practices that found work for me around the world:
I arrange to get to the airport before leaving home. In some countries, taxis may not be safe, for both men and women. Having done a low level civil war in sub-Saharan Africa, I learned to ask my hotels what they recommend, especially when traveling alone. In the big capitals when it comes to daytime, I usually pick up public transportation, especially the train / subway or cab.
I chose a five-star hotel with several restaurant options, ideally both inside and near the hotel. On the other hand, when it was as affordable as I found in Cairo, I took a driver waiting for me or in Lisbon caught a taxi to head to the top restaurants. In the new location, I often ask a lot of questions, especially to get suggestions from local women before trekking alone after dark.
While at Center City, I also had two more thumbs up:
Although I was hanging out and attending a business conference in hot desert weather, I wore long sleeves with a sweater.
2. When I am the only woman in a local restaurant, I usually choose a chair / table next to another pair, a female couple or family.
Five tips I learned trying to combine business with pleasure:
To save on flight, be sure to check out the connecting flights that allow longevity.
2. Whenever possible, take care of business first, especially if complicated flights can cause long delays.
3. Arrive at the weekend and take the test to find the fastest position of your meeting. Even with GPS, it can be tricky. In an overseas city, I saw big structures in the area around my first meeting. Even walking, it was almost impossible to cross, and the street address was obscured by scaffolding. In another foreign city, I discovered when I got to an appointment that the outside door was locked and I had trouble reaching anyone inside through my cellphone.
4. Fly in or wear a shirt or look for a suitable business in case your luggage doesn't arrive on time.
5. Set multiple alarms on your mobile travel clock and with the hotel operator. Even in the top hotels, I have missed calls, wakes, or room service errors before flying for a quick one-day trip. (If you can't run without coffee or breakfast, make a backup plan if necessary if room service is not shown.)
The key is to plan where possible and have some time to survey your goals. Otherwise, video conferences instead of face-to-face meetings may be a better value.