With so much at stake, it’s no wonder that corporate travel planning is a daunting challenge for even the most-confident startup. From a long and diverse list of possible destinations to language barriers, from overwhelming options to budget concerns, and so much more, your business can hinge on the success of your travel planning and program. But professional agents, like BlueOrange Travel based in New York City, are simplifying the process for startup professionals and helping businesses like yours thrive, even with the complexities of travel.
Streamline Your Corporate Travel Planning Process for Business Success
Start with a Strong Company Travel Plan
The old adage “If you fail to plan, then you are planning to fail,” is true when it comes to business travel. Your startup needs a sound, company-wide business travel plan that fits your company’s culture, focuses on the safety and happiness of your employee and is implemented for all employees and executives. The right travel plan will provide a guide for your employees to follow, work to save you money, save your employees time and provide peace of mind for the entire company.
Clear guidelines create a firm foundation for your startup to build business travel practices on. The plan is there to help answer any questions that come up and to describe the preferred procedures to follow when trip planning and traveling.
Count on a Professional
While you or your employees could plan their own business travel, you will save money and time if you hire a professional who specializes in corporate travel planning. The right travel agent will be able to find the best rates, negotiate upgrades on your behalf and plan travel that matches your business’s preferences, policy and budget. Business travel agents can grow with your startup, ensuring that you’re working with a professional who knows your business culture and is willing to help from the very beginning.
Additionally, when you or your employees have to make last-minute changes to your itinerary, either because of emergencies or a change of meeting schedules, your agent is able to work to change flights or hotel reservations without the headache or struggle and sometimes for less money.
Anticipate and Track Your Expenses
How to handle budget and expenses should be covered in your business travel plan. In order to simplify your startup’s corporate travel, clarify what your company’s travel expense policies are. Will your company reimburse employees for common travel costs like tickets, hotels, food and local transportation? Does your company partner with hotel chains for reduced accommodations? What about other preferred travel service providers? By anticipating expenses, your company is able to maintain a realistic budget and answer travel spending questions before they come up.
Additionally, consider how your employees will track their spending as they travel for business. Apps like Mint or Expensify work to automate and streamline the tracking process. Purchases made through credit cards are recorded and reports are generated that can validate travel spending.
Focus on the Business
The goal of company travel is to meet with clients and reps and do business in person, so be sure to meticulously maintain your schedule. Planning business appointments while traveling can get complicated. Fitting in a variety of people and appointments in a short amount of time can prove to be its own challenge.
Consider relying on a business meeting checklist to keep yourself organized and to make your appointments as effective and efficient as possible. A simple checklist can help you stay on track and focused on the goals of your trip. Calendar apps like Google Calendar, Gigabook or Calendly are also useful scheduling tools.
Traveling for business doesn’t have to be daunting for startup owners or employees. While corporate travel planning can feel like a monumental chore, taking the time to establish clear policy, hiring the perfect travel agent to help and making smart choice while you travel can work to simplify your process and make your work travel very worth it. Contact BlueOrange Travel today to learn how we can help you plan travel for your startup.