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Traveling with Tech: 6 Tips Every Business Traveler Should Know

These days, most business travelers are flying with an assortment of both personal and company-owned electronics— laptops, tablets, smartphones, and wearable devices to name a few. With the holidays behind us and business travel already in full swing, here are some practical tips to ensure your technology doesn’t fail you or cause delays when traveling.

1. Stay Informed of TSA Regulations

As of October 2016, the Department of Transportation announced a ban on Samsung Galaxy Note 7 phones due to them being a fire hazard.  Although passengers will no longer receive warnings while at the airport, the device is still prohibited from checked baggage and carry-ons.  According to the FAA, if a passenger is found with a Samsung Galaxy Note 7, they will be denied boarding and may face fines.  Save yourself the hassle and contact Samsung for a refund or a replacement phone before you depart.

2. Pack Your Bags Carefully

Speed up the screening process by planning ahead.  Pack your bags in a way that allows immediate access to your laptop.  Laptops (unless secured in a TSA approved bag) are required to be removed from luggage and placed in a separate security bin.  Smaller devices, such as tablets and smartphones, can remain concealed in luggage.

Bag packing tip: According to the TSA, the key to avoiding bag searches is to pack in an organized fashion. A cluttered bag makes it difficult for agents to identify contents on the scanner and often results in a bag search.

3. Charge Devices Beforehand

Occasionally, a TSA agent may ask you to turn on your laptop for verification purposes.  If your battery is not charged, you’ll be required to wait until the device has enough juice to boot up.

Be mindful as well of your other devices. Increased use of electronics on airplanes has made it challenging to get access to electrical outlets or USB charging stations at airports. Save yourself the frustration by charging ALL your devices before you leave for the airport.

Having your phone fully charged also ensures you are able to track your GroundLink ride once you land and allows for you to contact your driver should you need to coordinate a pickup location at the airport.

4. Back Up and Secure Devices

Don’t leave your important sales presentation to chance.  Save all files and images to another device or to the cloud prior to traveling.  In the event your computer is lost, damaged or stolen, you will still have the pertinent files in your possession.  In addition to keeping your files safe, add an additional layer of security by traveling with a cable lock to secure your case while in the airport lounge, coffee shop, or when you are away from your hotel room.

5. Mark All Devices

Nametags are for more than checked luggage.  Ensure your electronics are marked with your name and contact information just in case you accidentally leave a device behind in a seat pocket, at a charging station, or airport restaurant. In addition, most of your devices can be equipped with tracking software to speed up property recovery.

6. Stay Complaint

With data thefts on the rise, most companies have set some amount of security measures for their employees to follow. Setting a device’s screen lock, using strong and varied passwords, and avoiding the use of unsecure Wi-Fi networks are just a few of today’s mandates to safeguard company assets. To ensure your activities are compliant, before you travel, familiarize yourself with your company’s usage policies for company-owned and personal devices.

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