Martin Davis

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 10 June, 2006, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 10 June, 2006, 12:00am

I AM AN EXPERT at compression packing. Over the years I have learnt that there is no point in carrying too many items with me.

This is probably a result of the time I spent in the British armed forces where one learnt to pack efficiently, quickly and neatly.

Basically, everything that I need for a trip fits into one briefcase - a laptop, paperwork, a book or two, a BlackBerry and an additional mobile phone.

I also carry a diary, which I find incredibly useful.

When I am on an aircraft, I find it much easier to flip through a diary to check my appointments than scrolling through my BlackBerry.

My travel agenda can be so complicated that I find the BlackBerry and the internet fundamentally flawed when it comes to making a quick check on appointments and travel arrangements.

When you are on an aircraft and take out your diary, very few people notice. However, the effect is slightly different if you check data on a mobile phone. Some passengers can become quite sensitive about its use.

I am not advocating that we go back to using pen and paper but a diary is much easier and more efficient for scribbling down notes and various observations rather than storing such information electronically.

As is the case with most business travellers, my briefcase is my mobile office and a place where I keep the things that should hopefully help my business trips run smoothly.

My trips are usually very short, just one day or two days in each place. Therefore, I travel with only my briefcase and a change of clothes.

I am a frequent user of hotel laundry services and this eliminates the need to carry more clothes.

Travelling with a briefcase means I can get in and out of taxis quickly and move through airports swiftly.

I always catch flights at the last minute. I work on the principle that flights nearly always take off late, so why waste time waiting at the airport? Invariably, I am one of the last passengers to get on board.

I also read quite a lot when I am flying. The books I carry in my briefcase tend to be novels that are an escape from reality or books linked to culture.

I am not interested in reading about the internet or how the head of a certain company boosted profits by 1,000 per cent and retired with a payout of millions.

During my last trip, I read A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry.