Business Travelers, Take Heart--We're Inching Toward a Work-Anywhere World

Have you ever tried to get work done at an airport that's less than friendly to business travelers?

Take heart, for gradual change is in the works, says a New York Times article: Airports and especially hotels are becoming more user-friendly for globe-trotting workers.

According to the article:

... hotels and airports are gradually catching on to the fact that mobile workers need more help getting their jobs done on the road. Hotels that cater to laptop-toting travelers are scrambling to add electrical outlets in easy-to-reach places, install better task lighting and design chairs with flat armrests that can double as desks.

Getting Connected

Internet access is a key priority for business travelers, the story says, and airports and hotels are striving to meet the demand. That means improved technical support: “The tech support issue is something hotels need to do a better job with,” he said. “If you check into a five-star hotel and have to wait 20 minutes to talk to someone about a tech support problem and that person isn’t able to help you, that reflects poorly on the hotel.”

More electrical outlets, furniture to accommodate laptops--including chairs and beds--are also in the works at some hotels. Though airports haven't made as many changes, several are adding electronic charging stations, more power outlets and "work-friendly seating." A few kiosks at Dallas-Fort Worth even let travelers check e-mail for free.

As an occasional business traveler, I appreciate these steps forward--with place to plug in my laptop, an Internet connection and somewhere to sit, I can be just as productive as in my home-office.

Readers, what do you think of hotel-and-airport efforts to meet business travelers' needs?

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