Recorded in the TravelCommons studios outside of Chicago after finishing up my travel for the year. But there was a good bit of travel before the year-end, including one of the craziest/stupidest(?) itineraries I’ve done in a long time — Chicago-London-Denver in a little more than a day. Many of the subsequent Twitter comments I received asked that perpetual question — Why travel when you can video conference? Traveling to a business-formal office for the first time in 10 years causes me to investigate different methods in packing a suit. And the December storms that have snarled air traffic across the upper two-thirds of the US have me singing the praises of Flightstats. Here’s a direct link to the podcast file.

Here are the show notes from TravelCommons podcast #70:

  • Intro music — Warmth by Makkina
  • Recorded at the TravelCommons studios outside of Chicago, done for travel for the year
  • Not before a completely stupid itinerary — Chicago to London to Denver in a day-&-a-half
  • Bridge Music — Greensleeves by Tequila Mockingbirds

Following Up

  • Difficult “travel roulette” story from Ian Morgan about trying to get from Hong Kong to Sydney
  • Linda Martin of the Indie Travel Podcast reflects back on her college psych studies and concludes that the hustling around involved in “travel roulette” is actually better for you than sitting helpless on a delayed flight
  • Peter Rukavina agrees that there’s still value in frequent flier programs after scoring a last-minute direct flight from Charlottetown (PEI) to Boston on Thanksgiving weekend using the minimum amount of Aeroplan miles
  • Experiencing a lot of pushback from taxi drivers when trying to charge my fare on a credit card. Are others seeing the same thing?
  • Bridge Music — Please Come Home for Christmas by Oppenheimer

Packing a Suit

  • Always see more suits on flights headed east from Chicago than on flights heading west
  • Have managed to avoid having to wear a suit — much easier to wear a blazer and pack a couple of pair of pants in my rolling bag
  • New client in Philadelphia requires me to suit up — need to learn to fold a suit so I can keep using my rolling bag
  • Google search reveals a consensus around two different ways
  • One approach is to turn the jacket inside out and fold it in half
  • The second approach – I can’t figure out exactly how they’re doing it – but it seems like some sort of suit coat origami
  • I’ve ended it up with my own simple method – fold the jacket in half along the back seam, accordion-fold it in thirds, putting clothes in the folds – boxed shirts from the cleaners work the best
  • Bridge Music — Merry Christmas Baby by Calvin Owens

Why travel when you can videoconference?

  • When I “twittered” or “tweeted” – pick your Web 2.0 verb – about traveling to London for a 2-hr meeting, the @ replies asked why I didn’t use videoconferencing or webex?
  • Had done all the prior meetings by teleconference
  • But this was the final meeting and we were delivering some tough messages. And call me “old school”, but bad news is best delivered personally, face-to-face
  • Gartner’s latest “Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies” report says “video telepresence”, their term for a sort of high-def, IMAX-like videoconferencing set-up that supports “virtual meetings”, as “being on the brink of widespread adoption
  • Bridge Music — I’ll Be Home for Christmas by Kati Mac

Outsmarting winter flight delays

  • Winter travel — usually not a question of are you going to be delayed, but by how much? Or worse, are you going to get canceled?
  • I use‘s Track Flight Status by Route travel tool to predict problems


  • Closing music — iTunes link to Pictures of You by Evangeline
  • Bridge music from the Podsafe Music Network
  • Feedback at or right here in the comments section below
  • Direct link to the show

3 comments on “Podcast #70 – Packing a Suit, Videoconference over Travel, Watching Winter Flight Delays

  1. Allan says:

    So, how did you find out your client was “business formal?” Did you ask during the first phone conversation, or did you show up “business casual” for the first meeting (by mistake?)

  2. mark says:

    I forgot to ask and instead found out on my first visit — when I went there directly from a pharma client dressed in perfectly acceptable tweed jacket and jeans. Of course, if I had shown up in full dress greys at the pharma client, I would’ve gotten a world of grief. I was a no-win day.

  3. Finn says:

    I recently bought a foldable suit bag which quite nicely holds a pair of fairly chunky Dr. Martens shoes in a separate pocket, without ruining the suit’s shape.

    I’m not sure if this is the model, but it was the one that looked most like the one I have:

    It also has a huge tread band across the back, so I just slide it over the retractable handle of my rollerbag, and off I go.

    The shoulder strap removes with ease, and fits nicely in the side pocket, should you not need it.

    You might find similar products from other manufacturers too, but this one was just what I felt I needed to bring my suit around with ease rather than crease.

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