Consultant packing list
Now that you’ve been offered counselling, what should you pack in your bag? Here is a list of things I used and (consultant travel essentials) preferred when traveling. Some are common sense (shoe polish) while others are personal preferences (Tumi vs. Briggs and Riley). Feel free to link in some of your favorite products, services, and advice you have for new consultants looking to “get some kit” on Amazon. Packing list. Note: affiliate links.
You’re on your own here, but definitely follow your client’s lead. If you’re in financial services, expect to be business formal. Otherwise, dark pants and button-downs (for guys) are de rigeur. Keep your eyes open the first few days on the job to see what others are wearing (just like in high school). If you’re really not sure, check out the recruitment videos and see what they’re wearing. Finally, wear comfortable, neat, and easy-to-manage clothing. Never check your bag. At all.
Be practical too. Mix and match. Don’t pack too many shoes or too many one-day, super unique outfits. Dark two piece and change blouse.
This is one of your biggest purchases (consultant travel essentials) and possibly the most important. Two reliable brands are Tumi and Briggs and Riley. I’m a fan of Tumi, but my previous boss swears by Briggs. I use a Tumi Alpha 2 roller bag with 2 wheels (instead of 4). I like how the 2-wheel version is lighter (9lbs instead of 11lbs) and sturdier too. The wheels are solid. Of course, it’s 22 x 14 x 9 inches, so that’s the maximum carry-on size for the Delta. It’s pretty no-nonsense and has an excellent suit/dress hanger setup inside. It has a 5-year warranty; i had a wobbly handle once and had it fixed for free. Downside: you have to leave your bag there. Advantage: they also changed my wheels.
Of course, there are dozens of roller bags that will do the job. My friend has a Samsonite 4 Wheel spinner and he loves how you can move around the aisles of the plane.
Not sure if this is still true, but many consulting (consultant travel essentials) firms actually give you a computer bag with your standard laptop. For me, I use the Tumi Portfolio, which is a super thin computer bag. It is made of ballistic nylon, so it is indestructible, packable and relatively light. It’s only 3 pounds and fits anywhere. Most of my friends – and again ex-boss – have the leather expandable version of the Tumi (more expensive and can fit a lot more stuff). Watch out for 6 pounds instead of 3 pounds. I also personally think the leather gets a bit gross after a few years.
Most of my friends use a Tumi backpack. Call me conservative, but I find that a backpack (no matter how nice) feels casual. Yes, I sound like your dad.
Okay, this list is pretty much endless. Make sure you have power cords and chargers. The rest is nice to have.
- 2 outlet wall charger – for you and a friend
- Key ring charger – great to have a key ring charger. I like mine but strangely I don’t have many star ratings. Hmm, haters.
- USB key fob – self-explanatory
- Car phone charger – preferably 2 outlets, for you and a friend
- Presentation Clicker – Yes, you should have your own. Use this week.
- Wireless hotspot – this is a lifesaver when you’re in airports without wifi
- Headphones – This pair is <$30, but DS (see comments below) swears by these Bose Noise-Canceling.
- VGA to HDMI – I just ordered one. Thanks for the suggestion. (Hat tip: RA)
Other things in my bag
Practice clothes, sneakers
- Sunglasses – yes, I lose them all the time
Shoe polish, yes, that’s old school
Tide Stick Pen Because Life Happens (With Your Shirt)
The Contigo travel mug is a great way to carry hot coffee
- Earplugs – Trust me, people snore loudly in hotels
- Eye Mask – Whatever helps you sleep, do it
- Business cards – yes, people still use them, stamps are a great addition (hat tip: ON)
Small pill box with Advil, Pepto Bismol, Benadryl and backup meds
Not me, maybe you
Some things my friends wear but I don’t.
- Mobile phone holder so it’s easy to read GPS; man this Ottie is the best
- Privacy screen to prevent on-board viewers
- A mobile phone case with a built-in extra battery – I personally find it too bulky
- External battery – I use my wifi hotspot as a backup battery instead
Make a packing list
Make a packing list and keep it in your bag. Super handy with toiletries so you don’t forget anything. Also charge your computer and phone, but leave them right by the door; leaving the power cord at home is a super rookie move.
You actually need 5 things
Funny – you probably only need 5 things in the end: 1) ID 2) Credit card 3) computer 4) power cords 5) cell phone. Let me know what other products you like and should be added to this list.
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