I've been traveling for the past week on the West Coast - part for work, part for pleasure. This is the first official business travel I've done since 2002 and I've quickly been reminded of a few essentials out here on the road which I thought worth sharing:
1. As a business traveler, all transactions with airport personnel must be easy, pleasant and ultra-efficient. When, after waiting in security line for 10 minutes, luggage is flagged for being too large for carry-on, thus requiring me to re-enter counter line, then I am flagged again for random search at security not even five minutes later, this may contribute to a mood in state of decline.
2. Business travelers should be treated well on flights. If, as a former 100,000-mile traveler three years running, I arrive on an airplane only to find my seat assignment in the very last row next to the lavatory and this location provides access to a uniquely blended scent of jet fuel and urine, this may lead to a less than optimal flying experience.
3. If customer chooses to spend extra money renting from premium car rental service (Hertz) and takes time to make reservation, checkout procedure needs to be ultra-efficient with zero delay. This means car is waiting in the stall number listed next to name on electronic billboard. If billboard is not working properly, then customer is asked by cheerful self-proclaimed "face of Hertz" to wait 20 minutes in line, as European backpackers analyze pros and cons of each available vehicles on the glossy brochure, this may lead to anger and frustration.
The one redeeming aspect related to travel over the past few days has been a new hotel discovery in San Francisco. Not wanting to deal with the hustle and bustle of downtown, I found a darling hotel in Pacific Heights/Presidio called The Drisco. The hotel appears to be a converted old mansion or apartment building. It's located at the corner of Pacific and Broderick Streets. For $169/nt, you get a large luxurious room with big marble bathroom and walk-in closet plus free breakfast. High speed internet is free (as all hotels should be). Best of all, I'm staying a few houses away from Larry Ellison on one of San Francisco's most desirable blocks. The Drisco is a keeper!!