This week's issue of Mark Horstman's "Things I Think I Think" private newsletter was a veritable epic. In a nutshell, Mark announced his decision to retire from active presenting and thus to seriously curtail his traveling. The email is enormously long and dedicated to the various memories and takeaways from his outstanding career as a professional traveler. A great read. The conclusion, and the climax of the whole thing is its final section, titled "How To Travel Well". Not that I have any permission from Mark to publicly quote this, but I'll share anyway (after editing slightly), because I actively practice many of these maxima and whatever I do not practice is not due to the advice being bad, but due to my very own and personal deficiencies.
How To Travel Well
- Put the miles behind you.
- Stick with one airline for status.
- Underdemand, and overtip.
- Don’t use home to “recuperate”. Be fully in love with your family while at home.
- Introduce yourself.
- Forgive, forgive, forgive.
- Work aboard. Not doing so is unseemly if your firm is paying.
- Be nice.
- Stay frosty when something goes wrong. It’s inevitable, and anger makes you less creative when unscrewing things. Sangfroid is the traveling professional’s sprezzatura.
- Dress up.
- Have a great travel agent.
- Have a great assistant.
- Be nice. You’re an ambassador for your family, your nation, your people, your company. Leave a wake of pleasantness and politesse in your wake.
- And when you get enamored of the miles, and obsess overmuch about your status, it’s time to go home.