What work travel is really like

This is the closest thing you have to a home when you're travelling for work
This is the closest thing you have to a home when you’re travelling for work

About five years ago, I decided that I wanted to get paid to travel. I didn’t care how I did it. I just wanted to do it.

Today, I am a business travel and events editor so hey, the plan worked.

This means I go to lots of conferences and on work trips called ‘famils’ (familiarisations).

Initially, I was SUPER EXCITED. I mean, hello?! TRAVELLING FOR WORK.

Now, I am like … arggggh. Please god, not another hotel room, not another conference, not another long haul flight and multi-day trip where I am jetlagged to buggery and spend the whole time looking at meeting spaces.

These trips seem really glamorous and the food is always beyond ridiculous but that’s because they’re bribing you. They need you to look at their thing and listen to their thing, whatever that thing is. In order to get you to marginally enjoy this process, they feed you. And feed you. And feed you.

You end up hungover, waddling and super-charged on caffeine because they also need you to be awake for all of this.

You spend the whole time with strangers, except when you’re in your hotel room. And then you’re incredibly lonely and you can’t sleep because in Australia, it’s 3pm in the afternoon or something like that. So you use the hotel WiFi to message people, look at Instagram, buy things on eBay and generally BE YOUR BEST FRIEND. Because you have no friends. They’re all on the other side of the planet, doing things like going to trivia nights, cooking BBQs and watching TV with their boyfriends, all of which seem kind of mundane, until you’re longing for those very things.

Suddenly room service is not so exciting. Suddenly the sound of an aircraft engine is the sound of distance between you and your life. Suddenly you think that travelling for work is just that: work.



4 comments on “What work travel is really like

  1. So, so true!!!
    I get so emotional with jetlag I have an existential crisis for 2-3 days either side of any international trip, no matter how awesome the place.
    It’s good for perspective and appreciation though: ie. how boring those BBQs would be if it was all we knew and we hadn’t seen Barbados, etc 😉

  2. ahhaha it’s funny! I have a friend who works in events. Her instagram looks amazing… I wonder how she really feels. At least she will tell you that it’s all awesome!

    I used to go to conferences every year for work. I do love it but it is still work. Long hours and quick turn around times. I get to see some amazing things but it is work and it is tiring.

    YAY you for calling it

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