As Head of St Giles Hotels UK, Europe and North America, Abigail Tan-Giroud, who is also spearheading the group’s expansion plan of 20 hotels by 2020, travels extensively across continents and time zones. Any toddler with a pen would do a better job of mapping her hectic travel schedule than we could – lines going up, down, halfway around and then down, up and around again!
St Giles Insider caught up with her in London, on a very rare moment when her next trip is two weeks away, to learn her secrets to staying energized (hint: sane) while crisscrossing so many time zones.
What’s the craziest itinerary you’ve ever travelled?
I once travelled NYC -> Havana -> NYC -> London -> Kuala Lumpur -> Osaka during a one week period. While in Japan, I travelled Osaka -> Kyoto -> Tokyo then back to Kuala Lumpur and then back home to London. The entire trip took approximately two and half weeks.
Do you ever suffer Jet Lag?
I don’t want to jinx myself, but recently I haven’t had it. Particularly between New York and London, my body seems to automatically adjust – call it a coping mechanism to maintain sanity! But I do take some precautions to avoid it, especially on long trips.
What are some of your tips to avoiding Jet Lag?
Drink plenty of water – hydration is key for the body to function optimally when travelling, to avoid fatigue, and to maintain a good metabolism, as well as of course to keep the skin healthy as plane air does dehydrate!
When you get on the plane, think in the time zone of the place you are going to i.e. if it’s sleep time at your destination, try to sleep!
Don’t oversleep even though it may be tempting sometimes. Wake up at the right time even though you’re exhausted and have only had 5 hours sleep!
If you are interested in understanding the science behind Jet Lag, here is a detailed article from BBC Future on The Science of Jet Lag and How to Beat It.