Traveling can help you get some much-needed fresh air and disconnect from the daily hustle. When planning for a trip, using an application alone may not cut it. A better choice is to seek the help of experts who know their way around booking trips and taking care of similar tasks. In cases like this, enlisting the help of a virtual assistant is one of the best ways to go.
What are the benefits of hiring a virtual assistant for vacation planning?
While you prepare for your vacation, let your VA do the research. Some tools that you can use for planning include Google Flights and Expedia. Here are just some benefits that you may reap if you decide to get some VA help:
• They can keep you updated with business matters even if you are away.
• Virtual assistants can assist you with the logistics of your trip to include booking tickets, planning out the itinerary, taking care of luggage check-ins, and knowing the basic facts on how to get around not only the airport but the general vicinity.
• While you are on your vacation, your VA can also help take care of your tasks.
• You may also enjoy a stress-free experience after your trip.
• If you are still a student and you just need to plan out your trip for an upcoming break, a VA can help you maximize your relaxation time while worrying less about how you should take care of the technical arrangements for your trip. Some of these arrangements include booking a hotel and looking for a company that offers great vacation packages without breaking the bank.
How do I get started with planning my vacation?
If possible, inform your assistant at least one month before you plan to travel for your vacation. For major events like weddings and birthdays, a notice period of 60 to 90 days is reasonable, as well. This will not only physically prepare them for the tasks but will also serve as a thoughtful gesture on how you value their time as you do yours. Spend this time discussing the tasks that need to be completed and train them, if needed.
Set some “rules” before you head off.
This will mostly revolve around how you will communicate with your VA while you are on vacation. Would you prefer purely no communication or some correspondence throughout the day? In setting up the communication rules, consider the following:
• How many days do you intend to be away?
• Is your itinerary filled to the brim or do you have a lot of room to take it easy?
• Are you comfortable taking care of business matters while you are away?
If you intend to be away from work for more than three days, consider communicating with your VA at least once every two days. This will somehow give you a hint on how things are going and how you will deal with them for the meantime and once you get back. In case you are expecting more pressing issues to surface while you are on vacation, increase the communication to at least once per day.
Prioritize your tasks.
Do this before and during the notice period that you gave your VA. This way, the tasks will not be compromised even if you are not available.
• List all of your tasks. In this context, just list the tasks that you are supposed to do during your absence. It does not even matter if you will delegate the task or not. Just jot down whatever comes to mind then take care of these during the next few steps of prioritizing.
• Distinguish the urgent from the important tasks. Urgent means that the task should be done as soon as possible. On the other hand, the important tasks are those that need to be completed but can still wait. Next, you should inform your VA to complete the urgent tasks as soon as possible. For the important ones, set a due date for each task and plot them in your business calendar accordingly.
• There is a chance that not everything on the list will be accomplished. In this case, sequence the tasks in the “important list” according to the due date. If you have other ways to determine which of these tasks should come first, this is the part where you can implement them.
Delegate your tasks.
Instead of checking your e-mails while you are away, you can readily delegate this task to your VA. The VA, in turn, can check your e-mails at least once a day and notify you if something urgent comes up. Otherwise, you may instruct them to just take care of the matter on your behalf.
You do not even have to allocate all the tasks to them, just the tasks that you are comfortable assigning to other people. This way, you can save more time while maintaining a certain level of productivity for your business.
Ask for notes of events that transpired while you were away.
To achieve this, ask your VA to create a database for you where you can check the details of the follow-ups and concerns that you may have missed while you are away.
In general, travel arrangements are not easy to accomplish, especially if you have little experience with tasks such as these. Aside from helping you save a lot of headaches in the process of making travel arrangements, hiring a virtual assistant to do the tasks can help you save a lot of time. In turn, you may use the extra time to take care of other tasks that you cannot readily delegate. You may also use this time to recharge or prepare for your vacation ahead.