Road Rules - Rule 10

Keep your receipts.

Who: Deb Mignucci (debm@babycenter.com), VP of advertising, BabyCenter
Home Base: Fairfield, Connecticut
Mileage: 150,000 miles a year
Favorite Destination: San Francisco
Don't Leave Home Without: A key chain with a photo of my daughters

"Business travel can be costly — and not just because of the money you spend. Most people don't account for the time they spend organizing, calculating, and reporting their travel expenses once they get back to the office. I try to keep track of my receipts while I'm on the road — and that keeps me on track at work."

"As soon as I get a receipt, I make notes on it about the people I'm with, what I'm doing, and where I am. I paper-clip all of my receipts together and put them in a bright-blue plastic folder. I put the most recent receipt on top, and every two weeks, I go through the folder, starting at the bottom and working my way up so that the receipts are in chronological order. I tape the receipts to sheets of paper — using one sheet per day, if possible. I can retrace my schedule by looking through the receipts and comparing them with the calendar on my PalmPilot."

"After entering all of my travel expenses on an Excel sheet and marking whether receipts are for food, accommodations, transportation, or entertainment, I email my CFO and my boss a copy of the spreadsheet, and I mail the CFO my sheets of receipts. I usually get reimbursed before the credit-card bills arrive."

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