Small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) are constantly thinking of ways to venture into global markets and expand their horizons. Corporate travel is one of the ways in which businesses can grow their operations and improve their bottom line. From facilitating face-to-face meetings to relationship-building, going on business trips is a vital aspect of conducting business in the era of connectivity.
But navigating the world of corporate travel can be challenging for SMBs due to the costs and resources needed. In this guide, we delve deep into the world of business travel, offering some expert tips to small and medium businesses to optimise budgets and resources for their corporate travels.
A Specialist Guide To Corporate Travel for SMBs
Before embarking on a business trip, it’s crucial to establish clear and comprehensive travel policies for your company. This is particularly important for SMBs, as it will allow you to stay organised and optimise budgets in the long run. A travel policy should always include guidelines for booking accommodations, transportation, and expenses. This ensures consistency, cost control, and compliance among travelling employees.
Once you have a clear travel policy laid out, you can start planning your first corporate trip. Here are the key factors to keep in mind:
SMBs often operate with limited budgets, so it’s essential to allocate funds carefully. Prioritise trips that will offer the highest return on investment, such as meetings with potential clients or key partners, and consider using cost-effective travel options, like economy class flights.
Leverage technology to enhance your corporate travel experience. Be sure to download airline apps to get real-time updates on flight statuses, navigation assistance, and access to digital boarding passes. Additionally, video conferencing tools like Zoom and Microsoft Teams can simplify the reporting process with your headquarters team while you’re on your trip.
- Establish partnerships
Finding preferred suppliers and establishing partnerships with airlines, hotels, and car rental companies will help you secure discounts and benefits for your employees. Even as an SMB, you can negotiate favourable terms with travel providers, especially if you anticipate regular travel needs.
Employee safety should always be a top priority. Ensure to research your travel destination before booking the trip and provide travellers with the necessary information and travel insurance, where needed.
- Encourage smart travel
Educate your employees on cost-saving measures – such as using public transportation when possible, and minimising in-flight expenses. Always make sure to request that your employees submit expense reports promptly for timely reimbursements.
Regularly review your corporate travel program to identify areas for improvement. Analyse spending patterns, traveller satisfaction, and the impact of travel on your business objectives and adjust your policies and strategies accordingly.
- Use a corporate travel agency
Lastly, you might consider using a business travel agency for your business trips. By relying on a corporate travel agent to plan your trips, you will be able to save time and resources. Agencies often use the latest technology and booking systems to optimise your budgets and ensure your teams are assisted at every step of the way – from booking the accommodation to submitting their expenses.
How can a corporate travel agency help?
Corporate travel can be a powerful tool for SMBs to expand their reach, build relationships, and grow their businesses. By establishing clear policies, managing budgets wisely and embracing technology, small and medium-sized businesses can make corporate travel a cost-effective and successful endeavour. If you decide to seek the help of a specialist corporate travel agency, you’ll be able to leave all the planning to a designated account manager.
With a strong, unrivalled presence in over 100 countries, uTravel is one of the leading corporate travel agencies in Dubai. Whether you’re looking for help planning complex itineraries or securing the best routes and accommodations, a specialist agency like uTravel can help you at every step of the way, streamlining the process and ultimately saving you time and money.
There is more to business travel than just booking tickets and accommodation. For your trip to go well, you need to arrive refreshed and ready so you can remain at the top of your game throughout. Corporate travel experts offer a fresh, fast response to your travel needs, always making sure to keep your plans on track. With Utravel, you can forget the distraction of business travel management.
With an illustrious track record spanning over two decades in the industry, uTravel continue to chart their path of growth, with their unwavering focus remaining rooted in individualised attention. So, whether you’re a frequent sole flyer or in charge of block corporate bookings, uTravel is your reliable, trustworthy and professional corporate travel partner.