Is there anything more important than traveller wellbeing?
We don’t think so here at Travel Counsellors. We think the thing that really makes our business really special is a real, committed approach to customer care. Coupled with our highly personalised customer service, we are fully committed to duty of care and dedicated to traveller wellbeing – 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, across the globe.
Legislation around corporate liability for duty of care negligence coupled with the growing global threat means that companies must have robust procedures in place to mitigate risk for travellers, and this is always high on the agenda at Travel Counsellors. At all the business travel conferences last year, one topic prevailed: how to diminish risk for travellers. It’s not surprising when you consider that even traditionally low-risk countries are now on high alert as a result of terrorism. It means that a business traveller to a major European country or on a domestic trip is just as vulnerable as an oil worker in Nigeria. Terrorist attacks have become indiscriminate.
Travel Management Companies need to know where travellers are, they need to be able to communicate with them, and re-arrange travel if necessary. That was reinforced by one recent natural disaster – the Iceland ash cloud in 2010. Many corporates were sent into panic by not knowing the location of their travellers or the ramifications of closed airspace. The first line of defence is an around-the-clock service from your TMC so that help is at hand when travel is disrupted.
Pivotal to caring for our business clients are the in-house Duty Office and Health & Safety Teams who are dedicated to traveller tracking and well-being to ensure a safe and secure experience. The 24/7 Duty Office provides our clients with important information on real-time global events, travel news, and potential travel disruptions; they can locate travellers at risk; and support Travel Counsellors with emergencies and re-booking travel to ensure each corporate client makes it back home smoothly and safely.
During the Brussels bombings last year, a client of Travel Counsellor Kashan Ashwell was due to land at Brussels airport but was diverted to Ostend. Even before the client reached out to us, the duty officer had alerted Kashan who consequently arranged a cab to collect him from the airport to the town centre where he collected a rental vehicle. She directed him to Lille to return the car and board a train to CDG, where he boarded a flight back home to Birmingham. Kashan stayed in touch with him during the day to keep him constantly updated and make sure he never felt alone or abandoned. His email to Kashan summed up how he felt following the experience; “I cannot even begin to fathom how I would have fared if you hadn’t led the situation in the way that you did. I was only moving because of you. We are all very grateful.”
In 2016, the launch of our first consumer app ‘my TC’ further strengthened our core principles of customer care, providing business travellers with instant access to travel information, itineraries and travel documents, as well as offering constant contact with the Travel Counsellor, reflective of our focus on making the customer experience as personal as possible. Using the very best technology combined with a caring heart, we connect client and Travel Counsellor to ensure the business traveller is always looked after, wherever they are in the world.
We have also invested heavily in Health & Safety, appointing a global H&S Lead, Duncan Macleay, and launching a new software system enabling us to assess and mitigate the risk of products and services offered to business travellers. In addition, we’re currently in the process of gaining an internationally recognised accreditation for all Travel Counsellors to reassure clients that they are in safe hands!
And we must be doing something right – our customer satisfaction score is 96%; we’ve grown every year since inception; won the Amazon Growing Business of the Year Award 2016; and have already smashed all our records at the end of January 2017 with sales of £48m!
So it’s official: caring is a very successful business strategy and one we intend on sticking with.
Give us a call on +44 (0) 161 464 5350 or fill in the form below and let us call you back.