This week I completed a business trip to another middle of nowhere location…boy does my new customer like to put offices far away from the beaten path. While on location the choices of dining locations were limited and I came across an interesting situation. The local restaurant does not provide plastic straws; you can have a paper one but only if you ask. This got me to thinking about the things I pack when on a business trip. My stainless-steel straw just made the list.
I read other travel blogs and I know many of them advocate a principle of packing light. Not me, I usually go on long business trips and take so many gadgets and comforts of home that TSA must be confused by my bag.
Although I don’t live there at the moment, I am native to the west coast where plastic products have been considered bad for a while. About two years ago I made the switch from purchasing plastic straws for home use to stainless-steel straws. It took some trial and error to find the exact right set…I feel like Goldie Locks here. One set was the bendy straw, one set of regular straws, and the other was a set of straws with a wider opening for my morning shake. But after all this time I have a mix that is just right. But it never dawned on me to bring my metal straws on business trips with me.
Flash forward to this week and the restaurant will only, grudgingly, give me a paper straw, which gets all soggy before my meal is done. I begin to long for my favorite straw and wish I had packed it. When I get back to the hotel that night, I call home and tell my story. Guess what I learn? There are states and cities that have legally banned plastic straws.
A quick Google search turns up the following information. California and Hawaii have banned full-service restaurants from using plastic straws; Washington State, New Jersey, and Florida all have parts of the state that also have banns in place.
As a business traveler, one might now know all the rules and quirks of the locations they will be traveling too. It is hard to be prepared for every situation so being comfortable on the road is a matter of trial and error. Over the past few years, I have discovered there are so many things that I take for granted when I am at home. Items I use almost every day but somehow do not think to pack when traveling.
As an instructor, I am on the platform teaching most of the day, which means I drink a lot of water or tea during the day. My tip for this week is to have your own straw and put them in your travel kit. They are small and do not take up much space. If you do have some extra space, an insulated cup is also nice so you don’t have to rely on finding a place to buy a drink each day (or in my case, twice a day).
If you are like me and enjoy a few comforts of home when on a business trip, it is worth finding the extra space in your bag for reusable straws. Especially if you are going to travel to California and Hawaii, or parts of New Jersey, Washington State, or Florida.
Here are some of my favorites:
Set of 4 Milkshake Straws: I like these for my protein drinks in the morning. I use so much ice for my shake that normal size straws just don’t work well for me.
RTIC 40oz Cup: This is one of those insulated cups that keeps the beverage cold enough that my ice lasts all day. When I run out of my morning beverage, I can just pour more water or tea over top. This is a huge plus to me because I hate room temperature beverages.
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