For large businesses it used to be common to have dedicated travel managers or PAs to look after corporate travel arrangements, whilst for smaller companies it was a matter of asking ‘Auntie Google’ to find the best deal. However, the trend is now for businesses of all sizes to turn to Travel Management Companies (TMCs) to handle all the details of their corporate travel arrangements.
So, what are the main reasons behind this increased popularity?
They get you the best deal
TMCs come with extensive knowledge of the travel industry and the best available prices. This includes knowledge of seasonal fluctuations, the best route to take to various destinations and where to look for discounts. This is invaluable knowledge, as unless you are travelling a well-known route it is hard to be sure you are getting the best deal when you book. A business travel agent will use their industry connections and relationships to secure you corporate discounts and favourable rates, as well as giving you access to additional perks you may not know about as a private traveller.
The Internet is often seen as a universal encyclopaedia in which all information can be accessed. For corporate travel this isn’t strictly true. Airlines and hotels do put good deals on the Internet, but you often have to spend a lot of time searching for them. Partly this is because of the sheer volume of websites available. Seeking out the best deal might take many hours of searching.
On the other hand, a TMC will know exactly where to look, saving you a considerable amount of research time. Corporate travel consultants also often have access to informal channels and personal relationships that enable them to offer you competitive combined deals that beat anything you’ll find online. Your Travel Management Company will also have access to the latest travel information about your visit location. For example, they will be able to point out any potential risks or developing issues which you may not otherwise have been aware of.
Using a Travel Management Company streamlines your travel expenses by allowing you one point of invoicing for all your bookings and travel costs. This makes it much easier when it comes to accounting, budgeting for your corporate travel expenses and reclaiming VAT.
Ongoing travel support
Two of the biggest issues affecting business travellers are flight delays and cancellations. When you book a flight online there is frequently no after sales service. Travellers are usually not informed of delays until they turn up at the airport and then have to chase it up themselves with the airlines. When booking an extended trip, or one with multiple transfers, this can cause severe delays and inconvenience.
When working with a Travel Management Company, you can book your complete itinerary and then relax. The TMC will keep you informed of any changes to your travel schedule and make alternative arrangements as appropriate. The support offered by Travel Management Companies is also reassuring. For your employees involved in business travel, it gives peace of mind to have a single point of contact they can get in touch with wherever they are in the world, rather than having to worry about contacting suppliers directly.
The main appeal of using Travel Management Companies is the simplicity they offer businesses. They offer a unified, professional service that not only enables companies to reduce their overall corporate travel bill, but also saves precious time. In a competitive global economy, these incremental savings mount up over time and give users a competitive edge and increased productivity while travelling abroad on business.
Find out how UNIGLOBE Total Travel can help you save time and money on your corporate travel arrangements. Call our customer service team for more information on 020 8736 0700