You must plan to maximize your company’s travel budget. Not enough to tell travellers to choose the lowest possible airfare. These are the things you need to consider when planning or evaluating a travel program.
A well-written, disseminated and clearly communicated travel policy is the basis of any great travel program. However, I am continually amazed at how many corporations have such a poor and outdated travel policy. It’s easy to find a policy that is well written. It is easy to find one online. The only thing that is left is to edit it to reflect corporate culture. This information is then disseminated throughout the company so everyone can understand it and agrees with it.
To ensure everyone understands and has a copy, it’s a good idea to ask them to sign the travel policy. Every employee in the company should sign a copy, regardless of whether or not they travel. For best travelinfo check the site having all the possible flight schedules.
They could be required to travel and may even change their jobs. A travel policy does not have to be complex or lengthy. A few pages is all it took to create some of the most effective travel policies that I have ever seen.
Many companies don’t centralize their travel program. This can lead to expense reductions and loss of internal efficiency. Many companies who do not centralize their travel fear that they will have to make travelers do something that they don’t want.
While both of these are valid concerns, they do not necessarily have to be. Travellers don’t have to book their travel centrally. However, this does not mean that they lose flexibility. You can centralize travel and still let travelers book independently, either through a travel agency you choose or online through a provider with whom you are a partner and have trust.
If you assign someone to manage travel, you will have one point for both internal and externer support regarding travel issues. You don’t need a full-time travel manager if your company has a budget of less than $1 million. Travel oversight in these cases can be delegated to the finance department or human resources. We will now look at the many benefits of centralizing travel.
Travel coordination with one agency is a great way to gain many benefits. One agency will provide a single point for travelers to get help with problems. You also will have one source for all your travel needs. This eliminates the hassle of trying to combine travel reports from different sources. You can reap the benefits from economies of scale when you combine travel.
It is possible to get more from travel suppliers by measuring total travel across different locations or divisions. This will help you get more out of airline soft dollar programs. It means that you get more free flights and upgrades, a higher percentage discount at our preferred airline, as well as better rates from your hotel or car contract.
As your fulfillment costs decrease, your travel agency may often discount their fees for higher volume travel.
This addendum refers to the previous elements, and calls for centralizing travel at one agency. It is vital, but you don’t have to require travelers to use an internet booking system or to call the agency. Offering travelers the option to do either is a way of achieving multiple goals. Your fulfillment costs will be reduced as online booking is less expensive in terms of service fees. Giving travelers the option to choose their own travel arrangements will increase their morale, and you stand a better chance at a high adoption rate. To measure the travel-index it is pre-requisite to see all the possible destinations along with departure sites.
The third is that you allow senior executives, frequent travelers and those with more complicated itineraries to use your online booking engine. This allows them to book directly with a travel agency that can offer a better level of service and provide a better overall travel experience.
The majority of travel programs are based on the air budget. However, there are many other areas that can be explored to discover savings. A few of the more obvious areas are hotel discounts at your preferred hotels and car rental discounts with a preferred supplier.
Many times, your travel agency already has discounted rates due to consortia affiliations. There are other less well-known areas that you should investigate. Most suppliers will offer discounted rates or direct billing options if ground transport is a concern.
Direct billing arrangements between hotels and car rental agencies can also be a great way of increasing efficiency and making the accounting department’s job easier.
Many major airlines now offer discounts and incentives in hard dollars for customers who are loyal to their product.
For a market share commitment, you will be able to get a discount on the lowest airfares of your choice carrier if you have a travel program that exceeds $1,000,000 in air spending. You can also enter into soft dollar programs for your secondary carriers if you have a lower volume than required by the airline. These programs offer free tickets and upgrades as well as traveler status enhancements and airport club passes.
These programs do not require a lot of volume. However, they are not widely known so you might need to look for them or ask Baker Travel to point you in the right direction.
It is often overlooked that hotel volume should be taken into consideration. Your travel agency can negotiate the best rates for you or with the hotel properties that you prefer. For a minimum of one night, hotels located near corporate offices will negotiate discounts for you. A travel agency can offer discounts up to 50% on thousands worldwide hotels.
The rental car contract is simple to enter and requires little commitment on the part of the corporation. You should choose a partner who has excellent customer service and airport locations.
This will allow you to save between 5-10%, and your employees can get frequent renter status. This will improve their productivity and increase morale. It is possible to also enter into direct billing agreements. This will make your travel and accounting staff’s jobs much easier.
When you travel with groups or meet at one destination, hotels and airlines will offer discounts on your rates and fares.
These meeting contracts may offer discounts of up to 21% on airfares, and if there are enough people flying with one airline, it is possible to negotiate for complimentary tickets. The minimum number of people required to travel to the same location at the same moment is typically 10 Some airlines may have lower minimums, so make sure you ask before signing a contract. With a minimum of 10 nights, hotels will offer discounts on their rates.
These discounts can vary from 10% to much more depending on the occupancy rate and seasonal variations.
For a well managed program to work, it is important to keep an eye on the finances and monitor its progress. You should insist on customized, timely reports that are customizable to provide you with the information you require.
Regular reporting on the behavior of travelers and performance of providers will help you meet your contractual obligations, reduce costs and find savings opportunities.
Last but not least, any well-run travel program should consider the comfort and productivity levels of their travelers. If travelers feel at ease, they are able to focus on their top priorities and help you grow your business. Happy travelers perform at a higher level. Ask your agency to upgrade your client’s status on a preferred airline. You might consider purchasing blocks of airport pass club passes to be used strategically when planning long and complicated itineraries.
There are many ways to recognize travelers who do the difficult, often exhausting work of traveling. These types of rewards create loyalty and boost productivity and efficiency.
You can contact me to find out more about how you company can leverage its travel program to increase your bottom line, and to satisfy your executives. I would be delighted to direct you in the right direction.