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Itty Bitty Guide to Business TravelTitle: The Itty Bitty Guide to Business Travel
Authors: Stacie Krajchia and Carrie Rosten
Copyright: © 2004
Publisher: Chronicle Books LLC
ISBN: 0-8118-4101-4

Relevance: Aimed at neophytes to business travel, the Itty Bitty Guide to Business Travel is packed with lots of tips and hints about business travel.

Review: The diminutive Itty Bitty Guide to Business Travel packs a surprising amount of information into its 128 pages and overall small trim size. Ideal for reporters who are relatively new to business travel (i.e., traveling on someone else's budget), the book is divided into eight chapters that stick handle a travel neophyte into such important categories as Booking Your Trip; Before You Go; Packing Like a Pro; Getting There; You've Arrived; Out and About; and Coming Home.

Most of the information contained within the book is useful for people who like checklists to overcome the pitfalls of travel. This is not a destination-specific travel book such as a city guide or country-based volume. Rather, it addresses the general logistical framework involved with business trips.

One of the more interesting entries in this small book concerns brief notes about knowing one's corporate travel policies. The book spends quite a few pages outlining company per diems, travel agents, trip budgets, expenses, the use of vacation days to extend business trips, and company credit cards. We found this refreshing as few travel books -- even ones directed towards a corporate market -- deal with the necessary budgets, permissions and policies for business travel in these days of corporate cutbacks and surveillance from internal groups such as HR and Accounting.

Although nothing contained in The Itty Bitty Guide to Business Travel is particularly earthshaking or new, the book does provide a solid introduction to people beginning their business travel life.

Other interesting entries also include How to Prepare Your Office for Departure (including organizing and delegating your work); Preparing Your Home (including arranging for a house sitter); and perhaps most interestingly: Preparing Your Mind and Body for the Trip. Although these topics are not covered in any great depth, the book does provide many helpful tips for travelers.

We also enjoyed the section on Packing as few travel newbies understand the necessity of coordinating outfits to ensure you take the least possible items, the benefits of layering when it comes to clothes, and other matters. Correspondents and other on-air people are understandably concerned with looking good during a stand-up but all travelers have to justify lugging "extra" clothes around. This section helps readers make those difficult wardrobe decisions.

The book can sometimes go over the top with its checklists. Few reporters or correspondents would, for example, ever think of carrying a separate alarm clock when their alarm-equipped wristwatch would certainly do the job -- not to mention the ubiquitous hotel clock and wake-up calls from the front desk. That said, the mini checklists certainly provide at least the basics of what to think about when packing.

We enjoyed the section titled "A Little Bit of Home" but found it a bit much for most reporters and correspondents. For instance, the book suggests, "you may want to bring a few photos of family members or friends that you can tape up to your hotel-room mirror, or a family video that you can pop in the VCR when you're feeling homesick." Obviously, laptop computer-based stills or even movies are the way to go -- and where does one find a VCR on the road? Other book suggestions to pack some candles, a few meditation books or a yoga mat are simply out of the question for anyone traveling in anything but their own car.

We liked the sections dealing with public transportation, airports, rental cars, check-ins and possible upgrades to a better flying class. Although basic, the information is both succinct and to the point and would be ideal for people just starting off on their business travel career or the occasional traveler.

We also enjoyed the Coming Home checklist since most business travel books -- even the more advanced and detailed ones -- ignore a most important aspect of business travel: the shambles that await you in both your home and office after a long trip.

We were very impressed with The Itty Bitty Guide to Business Travel. It is both pocket-sized and contains plenty of handy checklists for new business travelers. It is ideal for reporters, correspondents and others who make infrequent trips and need to be reminded of the basic steps involved in business travel. Savvy travelers or ones that travel frequently will likely find this book too basic and bereft of much in-depth information. Recommended.

End of Review

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