The Hidden Costs of Booking your Own Travel
Business travel represents the second largest line of business expenditure for organisations across the world, yet the responsibility to book travel is often pushed onto employees who already have a full workload. Let's take a look at the most common options that companies use when making reservations for their travellers and examine some of the hidden cost that come with each.
Option 1: Travel Is Booked by Senior Managers
It’s the senior managers who do most of the travelling, and they can make their own travel arrangements, right? Well, they can… but how much is it costing you? Do they really want to spend their time browsing flight timetables and hotel comparison sites?
These are some of the most experienced, talented and expensive staff in your organisation; couldn’t their time be used more effectively?
Option 2: Travel Is Booked by Individual Travellers
It might not be only the executive team who are travelling; and, certainly, relying on other staff to book their own travel isn’t costing you so much per hour of booking time. But with already full workloads, does your staff have the time to shop around effectively? And what kind of oversight do you have so you can keep an eye on costs?
Your staff might be happy with the arrangements, but it is probably going to cost you more. And why do they keep leaving it to the last minute to book when everything is more expensive? Plus, you’ll have no idea of the real cost until they submit their expenses forms.
What’s more, travel arrangements don’t always go to plan, and this can be extremely stressful for the traveller if they don’t have access to support – and extremely stressful for those left at the office when you have no visibility of where your travellers are or whether they have been caught up in travel disruptions.
Option 3: Travel Is Booked by Your PA
In smaller companies, or businesses where it is the executive team doing most of the travelling, PAs and administration staff are often tasked with booking travel. This can cut administration costs and solve the problem of a travel free-for-all; creating a possibility of cutting travel costs significantly while giving you oversight of spending.
But how are you going to get the necessary systems in place? How well does your PA understand your organisation’s duty of care responsibilities? And will they be available to support travellers if something goes wrong? Are they simply booking the first flight that comes up on a website? Do they have the time and knowledge to research all the options and look for the best options?
Option 4: Travel Is Booked by a Dedicated In-House Travel Manager
If you have a significant travel spend then you may have a dedicated travel manager. this option gives you the oversight and support for travellers when they need it. Your travel manager should be able to negotiate good rates with hotels and be responsible for developing, communicating and enforcing your travel standards and duty of care responsibilities.
However, unless you have a big travel team, they aren’t going to be able to provide 24/7 support for travellers. And, in smaller companies, it might not be feasible to have a dedicated employee – it may well end up costing you what you save, or more.
Option 5: Travel Is Booked by Your Travel Counsellor
No matter what size your organisation, or how much travelling you undertake, a Travel Counsellor can support your business travellers to find the best rates, fulfil your duty of care responsibilities and schedule most effectively.
Our team negotiate better travel partnerships – we have enviable relationships with all the major airlines, access to industry brokerages, and financial clout in travel booking – and you gain access to these savings when booking with us.
Your Travel Counsellor is on hand 24/7 to support you and your staff; offering support when it’s needed and helping you to understand and fulfil your duty of care responsibilities. Your Travel Counsellor is supported by our Duty Office – the team there works round the clock to give our travellers early notification of disruption to travel plans and support our Travel Counsellors in supporting your staff and, where necessary, making alternative travel arrangements seamlessly and efficiently.
This is backed up with technology; by downloading our MyTC app, your travellers have access to all their travel arrangements and documents, as well as quickly receiving any alerts or notifications. And our back-office system and reporting gives you complete oversight of all your travel and associated costs. By working with your Travel Counsellor, you can use these reports to optimise processes and reduce travel spending.
Your Travel Counsellor will get to know you and your team and will take into account your individual travel preferences when making a booking – window seat? aisle seat? vegan meal? – and book accordingly.
Your employees are freed up to concentrate on their work – and you don’t have the overhead of a dedicated travel manager. Despite getting all the benefits – and more!
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