Elements of a strong corporate travel plan

In order to make the most of your company’s travel budget, it’s important to plan and utilize all valuable plans. It is not enough to let passengers choose the lowest logical fare. This is an element that should be considered when planning or evaluating your travel plans.

1. Tourism policy

A good written travel policy is the foundation of any good travel plan, and I have always been surprised that so many companies, if any, have such outdated and poorly conceived travel policies. It is not difficult to find a good written policy. You can easily find one online. All that is left is to edit it to reflect the corporate culture and spread it within the company so that everyone understands and agrees to follow it. Therefore, it is best to have everyone sign a copy of the travel policy to ensure that all company employees read, understand and own the travel policy. I recommend that everyone in the company sign a copy of the travel policy, whether they travel or not. They may change the company’s position in the future and be required to travel. The travel policy need not be too long or too complicated. Some of the best travel policies I have seen are only a few pages long.

2. Internal and external intensive travel

Many companies do not centralize their travel plans, and they pay the price for reduced costs, opportunities, and internal efficiency. Many companies that do not travel intensively worry about asking travelers to do things they might not want to do, and the idea of ​​hiring a travel manager for intensive travel. Both of these are reasonable considerations, but in most cases they are not necessarily necessary. By requiring travelers to book centrally, you don’t necessarily make them lose flexibility. You can travel together while still allowing travelers to book on their own with the travel agency of your choice, or online through a provider that works with you and is confident. By assigning someone responsible for overseeing travel, you can get a single contact internally and externally on travel issues. If your company spends less than a million dollars on air travel, then you may not need a full-time travel manager. In these cases, you can supervise the travel of the finance department, human resources and even administrative level assistants. Here are the benefits of concentrated travel.

When you concentrate your travel in one organization, you will gain many important gains. During the journey, you will have a single point of contact for questions, and you will need an entity to meet all your travel needs. This eliminates the problem of merging travel reports from multiple sources. By bringing travel together, you will reap huge benefits from economies of scale. If you can measure the total number of trips between departments or regions, you can get more benefits from travel providers. This will allow you to get more benefits from the airline’s soft dollar program, which means more free tickets and upgrades, higher percentage discounts from our preferred airlines, and from your hotel and car contracts To get a better negotiated price. Your fulfillment costs will also be reduced, as travel agencies usually reduce their fees for higher overall travel volume.

3. Combination of online booking and personal service

This is an appendix to the previous element, which requires centralized travel with a travel agency. This is important, but to do so, you don’t need the traveler to use the online booking system, and you don’t need to call the agent directly. By offering travelers one of two options, you can achieve several goals. You can reduce fulfillment costs because online booking is cheaper in terms of service fees. By offering travelers options, you can give them a sense of control, which improves morale and is more likely to get a high adoption rate. Third, you retain the best practice of using online booking engines to handle less complex routes, and allow you to book senior executives, frequent travelers and complex routes directly with travel agencies, which can provide higher levels of service and better The travel experience most needed for the overall service.

4. Look at every stone

Although most travel plans revolve around aviation budgets, one can investigate several other areas to find savings opportunities. There are a few more obvious areas worth paying attention to, such as the negotiated hotel price of your favorite hotel, or car rental discounts with preferred suppliers. Usually, your travel agency has obtained discounted prices through consortium affiliation and agency car contracts. There are also less common areas that should be investigated. For example, if ground transportation is required, most suppliers will offer discounted prices and direct billing options. Direct billing arrangements with hotels and car rental companies are also a good way to increase efficiency and simplify the work of the accounting department.

5. Utilize hard dollar and soft dollar contracts

Today, most major airlines offer hard dollar discounts and soft dollar rewards in exchange for company loyalty to their products. If the air expenses of your travel plan exceed $1 million, you can get a discount from the lowest fare of the airline of your choice in exchange for a promise of market share. For your secondary carrier, or if your number is less than the airline’s minimum requirements, you can enter the soft dollar program to get free tickets and free upgrades, as well as improve passenger status or airport club passes. These programs require very little content but are not well advertised, so you may need to look for them or ask Baker Travel or your current agent to point you in the right direction.

6. Don’t ignore the amount of hotels

Sometimes the number of hotels is ignored, but it should not be ignored. The price can be negotiated through your travel agency or directly with the hotel property of your choice. Individual hotels near the company’s location will negotiate discount rates for you in exchange for a minimum room night stay. By using a travel agency, you may get 5% to 50% discounts at thousands of hotels worldwide.

7 At least one rental contract

Car rental contracts are easy to sign and almost no responsibility is required from the company. Choose a partner with an airport location and a reputation for outstanding customer service. You can easily save 5-10% of the cost, and you can also negotiate frequent tenant identities for all employees. This will make them more efficient and improve morale. You can also enter a direct billing agreement at the same time, which can reduce the work pressure of travelers and financial staff.

8. Understand group and meeting contracts

Airlines and hotels will provide you with preferential fares and prices when you have a group traveling together or meeting in a single destination at multiple origins. These conference contracts can bring you a 2-10% discount on air tickets. If you have enough passengers on an airline, you can negotiate free air tickets when the contract is completed. The minimum requirement is usually 10 passengers to the same place at the same time. Some airlines have higher lower limits, so be sure to ask before the contract is generated. The hotel will discount the room rate in a similar way for at least 10 nights. These discounts range from 10% to higher discounts, depending on occupancy rates and seasonal changes.

9. Use reports to continuously improve metrics

Well-managed travel plans require continuous monitoring and financial controls to use them appropriately. Insist on designing timely customized reports to bring you the most needed information. By regularly receiving reports on traveler behavior and provider contract performance, you will be able to better fulfill your contractual obligations, achieve cost reduction goals, and understand where future savings opportunities lie.

10. Use all means to improve the comfort and efficiency of travelers

Finally, any well-managed travel plan will take into account the comfort and productivity of travelers. When travelers are comfortable, they can focus on the main priorities to help drive your business forward. If passengers are satisfied, their performance will be higher. Ask if your travel agency can upgrade the traveler status of the preferred airline. Check out the blocks where you can buy airport club passes so that you can use them strategically during long and complex journeys. There are many ways to reward travelers for the difficulties and troubles often encountered during travel. These rewards create a sense of loyalty and increase productivity and efficiency.

If you want to know more about how your company can make better use of its travel plans to satisfy your bottom line and supervisor level, please feel free to contact me. I am happy to point you in the right direction.