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Building Relationships through Business Travel Experiences

HomeBusinessBuilding Relationships through Business Travel Experiences

The traveling professional is one of the most common sights in business. Even in the age of remote work, there’s still value in meeting clients and business partners face to face. If nothing else, it’s a fantastic way to spice up the routine of office work. Still, these business travels aren’t just an opportunity to stretch one’s legs. 

Travel brings people closer together in ways that aren’t possible remotely or within a stuffy office setting. A change of scenery often brings conversations you wouldn’t even think possible. These talks lead to deeper relationships with others in the professional world. Today, let’s discuss the best ways to build professional relationships for those on the go. 

Why even travel?

New professionals new to the field may wonder why travel is even necessary. In the age of social media and instant messaging, many believe face-to-face meetings, be it for clients or partners, are a thing of the past. Veterans of the business world know that there’s no replacement for talking to people in real life. A lot of nuance in conversation disappears through the filter of emails, texts, and blurry Zoom calls.  Here are some of the biggest reasons why travel strengthens business relationships:

Face-to-face interactions

While technology facilitates communication across vast distances, it cannot replicate the authenticity and depth of face-to-face interactions. Meeting someone in person allows for more meaningful conversations, deeper connections, and a better understanding of the nuances of communication impossible through digital conversation.

Take, for example, instant messaging. Sure, it may seem as fast as an actual conversation, but it’s much harder to chime in with an opinion or pitch. More importantly, it’s not “true” instant conversation. The other person may get distracted by other responsibilities and not respond for hours. In face-to-face meetings, this is a non-issue. 

Trust building

Trust forms the foundation of successful business relationships. Meeting face-to-face demonstrates a commitment to invest time and effort in nurturing the relationship. These personal connections help to build trust organically, especially for clients who value the presence of another human being in important matters.

Let’s say you are offering a high-risk investment for a potential client. The truth of the matter is your offer does have some pitfalls. It’s far more comforting for someone to explain what to look out for directly. Moreover, the fact that you took the time and effort to travel communicates sincerity. An indirect conversation may make you look more secretive than you are. 

Enables empathy and understanding

Being physically present enables individuals to pick up on subtle cues such as body language, facial expressions, and tone of voice. Instant messaging certainly doesn’t communicate that. Emojis are also quite unprofessional in serious matters, so it’s not like adding a crying emoji after a business deal has gone sour helps anybody. 

Most people, in matters of business, will be more likely to empathize when they can see the person they deal with. The digital separation often lets people shut away their more empathetic sides, whether subconsciously or not. Far easier to shoot down an offer through text than it is face-to-face, after all. 


Traveling for business provides invaluable opportunities for networking with a diverse range of professionals, including clients, partners, and industry peers. Being physically present allows for immediate responses to concerns and lucrative opportunities.  Networking through social media may be more efficient, but it’s also a space where you compete against tens of thousands of other professionals.

In face-to-face interactions, it’s only you and the other party. More importantly, people are in a far greater mood for non-business talk outside of an office setting. Whether that’s a game of golf or a night on the town, networking’s easier when you can gauge the other party personally. 

Cultivating a culture of travel

Now that you understand why travel makes relationships flourish, it’s time to teach employees why they’re worth doing. Businesses must support an employee’s ability to travel for business reasons from a practical and emotional standpoint.

Train employees on travel basics

Equip employees with the necessary knowledge and skills to avoid common traveling mistakes. Offer training sessions on booking flights, arranging accommodation, managing expenses, and navigating unfamiliar destinations. Remember, travel sounds fun on paper, but there are a lot of little annoyances that may stress out newbie travelers. 

Provide financial support

Show your commitment to employee travel by providing reasonable financial support.  No matter where the meeting takes place, it’s still work.  The company should answer for meals, car rentals, or corporate housing for particularly long trips. Employees will appreciate the security of knowing whatever reasonable expenses are needed won’t come out of their pockets.

Centralize travel booking

Streamline the travel process by booking all transportation, accommodation, and other travel-related services under one reputable travel company.  It makes it way easier for employees to travel from place to place, with the bonus of making organization simpler for administrators. 

Ensuring travel risk insurance 

Prioritize the safety and well-being of employees by providing comprehensive travel risk insurance coverage. This insurance should include medical coverage, emergency assistance, and travel disruption protection to mitigate potential risks and uncertainties associated with business travel.

Final thoughts

Ultimately, travel is just another tool in the business handbook, but it’s a powerful one. Travel enables so many opportunities unavailable to remote work. That said, it’s quite expensive if not utilized properly. Make sure that all business trips are necessary and under a reasonable budget. Understanding when to splurge and when to be moderate will help greatly in optimizing travel for your business. 

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Austin Page
Austin Page
Austin Page may be new to the freelance writing world, but he's taking it by storm one engaging article at a time. He currently writes for various websites, covering a plethora of topics, including tech, business, human resources, as well as lifestyle, and relationships.


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