Business trips are viewed by many people as an inconvenience, but with a little foresight, you can turn that notion on its head. There are a few easy ways to change your work travels from a headache into a great escape from the grind—here are just a few of those possible strategies.

Make Your Travel Work for You

Booking business trips on personal credit cards and then getting reimbursed is a great way to ensure that you receive more free points and rewards for traveling than you already do. Many businesspeople travel enough that they can actually amass enough points each year to take a free international flight. Cutting a chunk of cash out of a potential romantic trip with your husband or wife is a nice reward for enduring those lonely business trips to the middle of nowhere.

Look Into Short-Term Housing

Hotels and motels are often drab and boring, and certain of these establishments have a very bad reputation among businessmen and women. Paying a bit extra for a short-term luxury furnished apartment can improve morale and make you feel more at home on your trip. Companies like Corporate Habitat rent out furnished apartments in trendy neighborhoods that include full kitchens, entertainment facilities, and no lousy continental breakfast buffets.

Work and Sightsee All At Once

Sometimes work sends you to places that actually interest you. When this occurs, make the most of the trip by planning a few fun activities for yourself. Arrange to meet up with friends who live in the area, or take a tour of a local museum or tourist attraction. There is interesting knowledge to be gained in almost any city or town in the United States; you just have to make an effort to track it down.

Find Innovative Ways to Network

Business travel often creates excellent networking opportunities. Whether you are headed to an industry conference or meeting people at one of your company’s subsidiaries, getting out of the office is a fantastic chance to get to know new and exciting people. You can even be creative with your networking: make an effort to meet your seatmate on your flight or train, or leave your business cards in your airplane seat’s back pocket. You never know who you’ll meet, or who will want to meet you.

Business travel doesn’t have to be a drab waste of time. A little planning can go a long way toward ensuring that you have an educationally rich, professionally fulfilling trip. The trip can go one of two ways—it is up to you to steer yourself away from tedium and toward productivity.

A recent college graduate from University of San Francisco, Anica loves dogs, the ocean, and anything outdoor-related. She was raised in a big family, so she's used to putting things to a vote. Also, cartwheels are her specialty. You can connect with Anica here .