In this day and age, business travel of some kind is becoming essential for many organisations, and so finding a travel management company (TMC) that’s a great fit for your organisation is of utmost importance.
Most TMCs will provide a self-booking tool to enable your bookers and travellers to book their required trips, occasionally, however, these users may need some assistance. This is where a business travel consultant (BTC) comes in, and any TMC worth its salt will employ a team of dedicated BTCs, ready to provide expert advice and assistance at any time of day.
A typical day for a BTC involves providing expertise on an array of travel logistics. It might start with a call from a client who needs to travel to a new city for a meeting and so needs to book train tickets and a hotel room for the night. When there are so many different hotels to suit different budgets, it can be difficult to know which is the best one to book. A BTC can advise on hotels within a customer’s budget, that’s in the right location for them (for instance you might find hotels near the train station are more expensive but avoid the costly taxi fare of the cheaper hotels further out of town).
Next might be an email from a customer who needs to book flights but is concerned about making the right choice from all the options available. With so many different journey options and fare types, it’s a real minefield at times! This is when a BTC’s knowledge is invaluable. They can look at the customer’s requirements (a direct flight with a short journey time or maybe a cheaper fare if they don’t mind a longer multi-sector journey; they may also require a fare that can be cancelled/amended in case their meeting is changed – the list goes on!). This is where a BTC can provide a detailed, unbiased quote for the most appropriate option, which may not always be obvious to a traveller.
Beyond competitive prices, great customer service and user-friendly tools, there is one aspect of business travel that’s of paramount importance to every organisation: the safety and security of its travellers. Duty of care is a moral and legal obligation for every employer. Safeguarding your travellers is of great importance, and a good TMC should have technology which enables you to track the location of any of your travellers at any given time, as well as providing you with live travel alerts.
But as well as the ability to track your travellers, BTCs are available 24/7 to assist if needed. Thankfully, the majority of business trips go without a hitch, but we all know that it’s no fun queueing for hours at the airport because your flight is cancelled or arriving at your hotel to be told they’ve made a mistake and don’t have a room for you. And of course, sadly we all know that emergency incidents can happen at any time, anywhere. This is when a BTC can help, at any time of the day or night, to ensure your travellers’ safety and assist with onward travel or accommodation if necessary.
Ultimately, whilst it’s crucial to plan in advance for emergencies, it’s also essential to ensure the safety and wellbeing of employees while they’re travelling. Knowing your organisation’s travel is backed up with a competent team of BTCs could be the peace of mind you need.