The Essential Conference Packing Checklist
Packing for a conference is never as fun as packing for vacation. When you’re going to be surrounded by peers and trying to represent your business to the best of your ability, the last thing you need is to be stressed out over something you left at home. Follow this essential packing list and you’ll be able to breathe easy, dressed to impress, pen in hand.
When juggling various panels and keynote speakers, you want to feel prepared. Keep a couple of small notebooks handy as you move around the conference. It’s much simpler to jot down a few notes than to whip out a computer in the middle of someone’s speech.
- At Least 3 Pens
You will likely lose one pen. And you’ll likely give one away. Pack at least three and you’ll be prepared and able to help out others, scoring you points for being professional.
- A Watch
Even though cell phones are an active part of our everyday lives, it’s still rude to be constantly checking your phone during presentations and meetings. Wearing a watch helps you stick to your schedule without allowing you to be distracted by social media and emails you might not have time to tend to anyway.
- Casual Wear & Professional Wear
Of course, regardless of if you’re presenting or not, you’ll need professional wear for the daytime conference activities. But, because you’ll be moving around, try to pick something comfortable. It’s also useful to try to get a sense of the weather you can expect during your conference so you can dress appropriately.
However, being in professional wear all day is no fun. Having casual wear on deck for drinks with peers, sight-seeing, and whatever activities you find time for outside of the conference will boost your confidence and keep you from feeling too limited.
- Two Pairs of Shoes
Dress shoes are notoriously uncomfortable. In fact, over 60% of Americans say they wear shoes that hurt their feet regularly. Bring along a pair of shoes you like that can still be worn in a professional setting and save yourself the pain and stress.
- Business Cards
Seems like a no-brainer, but make sure you have enough business cards. For a conference, the ten or so you keep in your wallet are not going to suffice. It’s best to just pack a whole sleeve of them in your carry-on.
- A Pre-Made Name Badge
Bring your own badge. Conference organizers are busy and there’s nothing worse than being misrepresented on your name badge, having your name misspelled, or being one of the few people stuck with handwritten badges. Make one you like and laminate it so you’ll always be prepared.
- Portable Wifi
Don’t miss out on an opportunity to get work done just because you’re trapped in a spot with no wifi. Knowing how to find wifi or investing in portable wifi, like the WorldSim Hotspot, means you can work anywhere, anytime. This article by USA Today has several useful tips on staying connected whether traveling internationally for business or simply from state to state.
- A Rolling Carry On
Again, you’re going to be walking a lot. A rolling carry-on can convert to a briefcase during your conference and also makes rushing through crowded airports that much simpler.
- A Multi-Charger
There are never enough outlets for the technology of today. Bringing along a multi-charger ensures you’ll be able to charge your phone, tablet, and computer with one device.
What are your conference essentials? Share below and help us build this resource for all those jet-setting for business and unsure what to bring along.