Here’s my top tips to survive work road trips with some dignity.

For many New Zealanders work involves road trips and, as Kiwis, these excursions can devolve into booze cruises. Fatigue becomes a factor as does humiliation. You can easily end up on the back foot.

But partying is just one of the hurdles of work travel.

As a guitarist, ex-professional sportsman, cricket commentator and Hauraki breakfast radio host, I've been on the road a lot. In fact I'm on a 10-day trip as we speak. Auckland, Hamilton, Wellington, Tauranga, Dunsandel, Christchurch, Hawaii and Dunedin.

So as a seasoned tourer, I thought I'd share some tips to help you get through your next roadie.


Take nothing

Luggage is your enemy on the road. It slows you down, messes up your hotel room and eventually turns into laundry. Take one outfit, some underarm and as many pairs of smalls as days you are away and nothing else.

Snore loudly

Work trips often become Bert-and-Ernie situations. Which is of course the act of sharing a room Sesame Street style with single beds side by side. If this happens, make sure you're a terrible roommate. Snoring is a great start. If you keep your Bert awake he will not want to share a room with you in future.

Recently, while Bert and Ernieing with my workmate Jeremy Wells at the Rimu Park Lodge in Ohakune, I threw my head right back and got a great snore on. I was honking so loudly he thought his phone was vibrating on the table. As a result, if there is ever a spare room on tour, I get it. No one wants to room with me. It's six days into this tour and there have been no Berts at all.

Repeat one word over and over again for the whole trip

Early on you want to get a catchphrase going. Settle on one annoying word you can use in every sentence for the entire trip. It brings the team together.

On a previous work trips we've used the word "punisher". Who is the punisher we have to meet. Where is the punishing hotel. Where's the punishing taxi. Who wants to punish a drink. Other trips we've used "blaster" and "humiliator". On this trip the key word is "pest". It's been great for morale.

Get on the back foot early

As I have said, New Zealand work trips can easily descend into booze cruises. It's a cultural thing for Kiwis. If it's going to happen, you want it to happen early. A huge night on day one might just hurt you enough to rein it in for the next few nights.

Never use your mini bar

Why run up an unnecessary bill? Be smart. There are other members of the team whose mini bar you can use. Much easier to stop in and pest a colleague's Pringles, Peanut Slabs and sparkling water than spending your own money.

Don't bring your phone charger

If no one can get hold of you, no additional work can be added. Arrive at every appointment late asking for a charger and people will sympathise: "Poor guys on the road with no battery power." The more your phone stays flat on a roadie, the harder it is for people to pest you and the easier your schedule will become.


Work trips can be pesty but they can also be fun. You just have to be clever about them.

So get repetitive, get snoring, take nothing, don't charge your phone, get on the back foot early and make sure Bert doesn't want to share a room with you.

By following these rules you can easily survive and even thrive on your Kiwi work roadie.