You don't want to miss out on a job opportunity or a conversation with a connection who can help build your career, because you're not at home or because you are out of touch. It's also important to be able to respond in a timely manner to prospective employers. Staying connected will help your job search, regardless of where you are located.
It's not hard to stay connected. I don't travel anywhere without my phone and my laptop. As long as I have the right tools with me, I don't have any problems accessing my voicemail, email, or the Internet.
Job Search Travel Tips
Check Your Email
Check your email on a regular basis. You should be able to access your email from your web-enabled phone or the Internet. If you set up a web-based email account (like GMail or Yahoo Mail) just for job searching, you'll be able to respond quickly to employers.
Internet access is readily available at many hotels, airports, and other locations. Having a wireless laptop makes it easy to connect.
Check your voicemail regularly for new messages and program important phone numbers into your cell phone. If you're traveling internationally, check for an international long distance calling plan to save on phone call costs. If you have an iPhone (I can't get by without mine) or another smartphone, you'll be able to do almost everything you need right from your phone.
Job Search iPhone Apps
There are a variety of job search apps available for your iPhone and iPod Touch. You can download apps that search for jobs by keyword and location (using the iPhone GPS function), email job listings, keep track of your contacts, and even create a resume.
LinkedIn can be used anywhere, if you have a mobile device with web capabilities, via m.linkedin.com. When you're traveling, you can message your contacts directly, without having to email them, keep up on updates within your network, research people as you meet them, and add new contacts to your network.
Always have business cards ready to give to contacts. That way it's easy for them to follow up with you. If you're not employed have some personal cards made with your name, address, phone number, and email address. Stores like Kinkos or Staples print business cards quickly and reasonably, or you can order cards online. Collect business cards from the people you meet, so you can connect with them in the future.
Your resume should be accessible from wherever you are: on your hard drive, if you have your laptop with you, or stored on the web in Google documents, or in your email account, for example. That way you'll be able to apply immediately if you come across a relevant job posting.
If you have job alerts set up, check them occasionally. Again, you don't want to pass up a good opportunity because you didn't notice it.
When you're traveling abroad, be cognizant of the time difference. Check time zones before you call, so you're making business calls during local business hours. Don't forget an adapter plug for your computer and your phone charger.
Finally, when you're on vacation, do be sure to take a break and enjoy. You don't need to stay connected all the time. If you're actively job seeking, do check your email and voicemail when you can, but everyone is entitled to a vacation, regardless of where they are in their job search.