Frequent flyer, Top 40 Under 40 alumnus and Yardstick CEO Chris LaBossiere estimates he travels between 80,000 to 100,000 miles per year – so he’s certainly picked up some travel tips and tricks along the way.
Q: What are some of your carry-on essentials?
CHRIS: First and foremost, my noise-cancelling headphones and a fully loaded MacBook with full seasons of my favourite TV shows. A travel wallet that holds every essential I might need if everything else was lost or stolen. A real book, some antacids and collar stays. Lots of collar stays. Finally, a suit coat with three or four pocket squares. You can trick anyone into thinking that a new square and shirt is a whole new outfit.
Q: What are some of your travel tips and tricks?
CHRIS: If you are not carrying a Nexus card, you are self-selecting to a world of pain and suffering. Save half an hour per trip with one. Also, if you fly the same route again and again, consider flight passes. Pre-purchased, you get a full-fare economy ticket for a competitive price, with 125 per cent qualifying miles, complimentary advanced seat selection and flight changes. And always get a shoe shine when you see a booth – it’s good for your soul and soles!
Q: Do you have any pet peeves when it comes to other travellers, or the whole travelling process in general?
CHRIS: Let’s try to treat customer service agents as humans – in other words, some people just need to chill out. The airline gate agent is on the frontlines of one of the most complex businesses in the world. He/she is not trying to ruin your life as they redistribute a cancelled airplane full of passengers who all have connections and families to get to. Maybe, as a pilot, I understand that weather, computers and flying machines are complex. Linking it all together and serving you a glass of wine and newspaper is still pretty much a modern-day miracle.
Q: What has been your favourite destination so far?
CHRIS: An afternoon at the London Portrait Gallery and the Churchill Cabinet War Rooms, then a few beers in a packed English pub. Or, touring Normandy and following the footsteps of our Canadian Second World War heroes. Trips I have done again and again, and which never get old.
Q: It can be tough to be on the road a lot, but what’s your favourite part of having the opportunity to travel so frequently?
CHRIS: Building our business means compelling people to trust us, to take a leap of faith with us. To do that right, one must do it in person. Getting to meet our customers, on their turf, breaking bread with them – that’s fun. Some Air Miles after it’s all said and done, so my wife and I can enjoy our own personal adventures and downtime, that’s some nice gravy.
This article appears in the April 2018 issue of Avenue Edmonton. Subscribe here.