Brought To You By Emily Parks
Productivity Consultant at Organize For Success, LLC...
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Saturday, April 15, 2017

Countdown to Memorial Day: Coach Dave Clawson's Travel Tips

Spring has sprung, and the countdown to summer's unofficial start on Memorial Day has begun! As temperatures rise, I find that travel planning increases so this is the third in my series of interviews highlighting frequent travelers' preferences and best practices, giving you takeaways to try for your next trip.

Coach Dave Clawson
This week, I am pleased to share my interview with Dave Clawson, head coach for the football program at Wake Forest University since December 10, 2013. Known for his prowess in building football programs, Coach Clawson has shown dramatic improvement at every stop: Albany, Buffalo, Lehigh, Villanova, Fordham, Richmond, Bowling Green and, now, Wake Forest. Yet, with all that football success, Coach Clawson faces a tremendous amount of traveling on a regular basis, whether for recruiting, getting to game day and everything in between. Add to that traveling with his wife, Catherine, and two children, Courtney and Eric, and Coach Clawson has plenty of travel experience to share. For more on Coach Clawson, please view his bio here, and continue reading for travel insights to use over your next adventure.


EP: Do you travel mainly for business, pleasure or both?

DC: I travel for both. Recruiting requires me to travel quite a bit for work in December and January. During the season (August - December), we have to travel to away games, but, in the summer, I really enjoy taking at least one trip a year with my family. Each year, we go to a different part of the country or internationally.

EP: Do you prefer traveling via plane, train, boat or automobile?

DC: None! Hahaha! I have to say that the actual traveling is the worst part of travel. Still, if it's further away than a 5-hour drive, I like to fly; other than that, we typically travel by automobile.

EP: What is your favorite destination and why?

DC: I have been to Paris twice, and I absolutely love that. Additionally, I love going down to the beaches of the North Carolina and South Carolina shore.

EP: What is your preference for airlines?

DC: Delta or American, but that's only because those are the two I end up flying the most.

EP: What is your preference for hotels or accommodations?

DC: I prefer both Marriotts and Hiltons because of their consistency - You know what to expect, and their service is usually very good.

EP: Do you book your own travel or prefer a travel agency?

DC: For personal travel, we usually book the travel on our own; however, for work, the athletic department uses Anthony Travel.

EP: Are you loyal to any particular brands or have suggestions for utilizing loyalty programs?

DC: I usually try to travel based on the lowest price for when I need to be going so I don't gravitate towards any specific brand simply because it's the brand. I go to a brand if it's the best price.

EP: When flying, what do you ensure is in your carry-on?

DC: I like to bring a good book and, usually, my iPad.

EP: What's your favorite book?

DC: I love reading presidential biographies. The ones about John Adams and Andrew Jackson are two of my favorites.

EP: Do you keep an extra bag of toiletries packed?

DC: Yes, I do. I always have a bag of toiletries under our sink that is packed, and, any time I travel, I just grab that bag and throw it in my suitcase. It's packed and ready to go.

EP: How do you organize your time commitments and reservation details while on-the-go?

DC: I put everything in my iPhone's calendar. If I'm going to a hotel, I'll put the hotel name, address and reservation number or details in the calendar so I can look it all up with just one click.

EP: Any tools or tactics you use to keep your accommodations organized?

DC: I rarely stay at a hotel for more than one night with my recruiting travel schedule, but I immediately set up my iPad on my desk and try to have it duplicate my work set-up as much as possible.

EP: Do you use technology to help stay productive and organized? If so, what's your favorite program, app, website or tech tool for surviving the chaos of daily life? And what's your favorite for being your best while traveling?

DC: I use the calendar app on my iPhone and iPad a lot; that's probably the technology I depend on the most.

EP: Across all your travels, which restaurant did you enjoy most, why was it your favorite and what was the best food?

DC: Whenever I travel, I enjoy food. I like watching Food Network shows so, whenever I go to a place on the road, I never like to eat in chains. I always like to find what the local restaurant is and what the local food is. If I'm near the shore, I love to get seafood; if I'm in western North Carolina, I like to get the barbecue. It's like when you're in New York and you love to get Italian. When eating at a place that's local, it usually has fresh ingredients and fresh food.

EP: If you could have one super power to make traveling (or life in general) a little better, what would it be?

DC: To eliminate the travel part of travel! If I could just get beamed somewhere, going to the shore could take 5 minutes instead of 5 hours, and that would make life much, much better.

Thanks for sharing so many excellent tidbits, Coach Clawson, here's to a hugely successful season this fall... Go, Deacs!

Readers, do your preferences mirror his? Do you use any of the tools or hacks that he's mastered over his countless travels? Which tidbit do you plan to implement yourself?

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