When it comes to business travel, most SMEs are itching to get back on the road! But this increase in demand is compounded by long-term airline capacity issues, not to mention rising fuel costs, which means higher prices – at a time when most businesses are under budget pressure.
Fortunately, there are ways to save significantly on business trips. This means shifting from unmanaged travel to managed travel (in other words, partnering with the right travel management company) but you will reap the benefits in terms of both time and money.
Nowadays, travel booking is not really about getting the cheapest rates. It’s about T&C, flexibility and ease of booking – how about five minutes instead of 50? Then there is an impressive transaction and fare access to think about and immediate assistance if a flight is canceled or needs to be rescheduled.
More than that, it’s about looking at your costs from a higher convenience point and saving on every step of the journey, from pre-booking to what’s happening in a month.
Here are 7 ways to save time and money on business trips
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Imagine the value you get by looking at your original travel numbers in black and white. Yeah Al that sounds pretty crap to me, Looks like BT aint for me either For example, how often does your team travel? Can it be booked in advance?
There are endless ways to get the most out of your travel budget by finding skills and spotting small changes (even big ones). Every day our teams find new ways to optimize the travel expenses of our customers.
Set the rules
Did you know that form travel rules, aka travel policy, are the number one way to save money on travel? Truth be told, it is very difficult to control spending if everyone can book where, when and what they want.
The borders are good. And it doesn’t have to be many, even the simplest travel policies can make a huge difference
But it does help to get everything on paper, including:
- Which airlines would you like to book your team with?
- Guidelines on Economics, Premier and Business Class
- If a hotel has a cap on how much they can spend per night
- Who gets it all signed off
Stop pushing your ‘go’ person
Many SMEs have one person who takes care of all the travel bookings. Often it involves their daily responsibilities, but they are great at it so it is easy to maintain stability.
Putting it on top can be a lot, especially if the team is growing fast and travel requests are coming in dense and fast.
One of our clients, Holovis (the brain behind the theme park rides and AR / VR experiences around the world), discovered this when his team grew from 32 to 125. As an experienced design company, they have to travel across engineers and designers. Globe, often in teams, and with multiple stops along the way. It all got a little complicated.
In-house travel bookers carry a lot of responsibility on their shoulders when it comes to managing requests, costs and post-trip admins. And if something really goes wrong if you’ve really felt for them.
Corporate Traveler has saved Holovis a lot of time and money by taking care of all their bookings, including last minute trips and changes. And if ever an event or incident happens (think of an unexpected border closure) we are here to bring their travelers home.
Keep your team focused on the day’s work
Even when things go awry, booking travel on the Internet is not the best use of your team time. Booking a business trip on the Internet can take up to 49 minutes (or more) when you search, compare prices, check availability, and book. With a TMC onboard you’ll be able to do this in five minutes (and get the best price available per day).
To be clear, is Mary in Sales spending too much time on InsertAirlineHere.com when she should close her deal or run sales training?
Trade SOS calls for 24-hour support
Why when things go wrong, is it always after hours? The boss and travel manager received an SOS call from a distressed traveler on Saturday evening. Not the way you want to spend your weekend – stuck in a call center!
With the right travel companion, you will never be in that position. Dedicated After Hour Support Team means your travelers can go directly to the experts.
Make any crisis more manageable
How do you even begin to measure the stress that unexpected travel changes or events cause to your team, especially if they travel through COVID? This is not something you need to consider if you have a managed travel program in place.
In any crisis, big or small, a TMC will take care of all admins and systems as soon as possible and painlessly. And they will make sure that the related costs do not go to OTT!
It’s nice to know that when things get pear-shaped, a travel expert can take the reins.
Knowledge is power
In fact, these travel skills are invaluable. You can start a start-up or be a professional in running your business, but travel in 2022 is a completely new ball game.
Our team has a lot of experience and industry knowledge – and all the travel connections you can expect (if things don’t go according to plan, we can get a fee waiver).
Knowledge is power. That’s why we put together an SME Corporate Travel Toolkit. It will guide you on how to create the perfect travel policy, where savings can be found without compromising the safety of travelers, the loss of unmanaged travel and much more.