This blog was originally published in 2015; we have since updated it to reflect the most current and accurate information.
As a busy professional, your corporate travel life plays a huge role in your success.
Whether you travel regularly or sporadically, it’s important to have a plan that works.
Many corporate travelers struggle to find the best flights, the most comfortable hotels and the best deals; they are, after all, already overloaded with their professional duties as it is.
If you consider your business travel planning process to be a headache, you might just need a corporate travel manager.
Check out these tell-tale signs that you are in need of one.
You Lack Skill in Creating Itineraries
One thing a corporate travel manager can do for you is create a solid, intuitive itinerary for your trip.
A good travel manager will be versed in scheduling your trip so that you have time for everything, including downtime and recreation.
Your travel manager also has more power to change your itinerary on short notice, with his or her connections with airlines and hotels. If you’ve found yourself floundering when it comes to creating an effective schedule for your trips, it might be time to hire a corporate travel manager.
You Lack Industry Knowledge
Working day in and day out with travel websites, corporations, hotel chains and airlines means your travel manager will have a few tricks up his or her sleeve when it comes to procuring the best for you. Your travel manager will have an extensive knowledge of travel sites, expense management tools, itinerary apps, the best booking times, which hotels have a “last minute discount” policy, how to negotiate contracts with preferred companies or airlines, and much more.
You won’t have to stress out about finding a good deal or a suitable hotel at the last minute; your travel manager will have taken care of it for you, with a far wide breadth of knowledge at work.
You Lack the Patience to Book Smartly
Jumping at the first flight that suits your schedule? Booking the first hotel that’s within short distance of your conference center? These are habits that indicate you might need a corporate travel manager.
A travel manager will patiently assess a flight before booking it for you, ensuring that it doesn’t include two layovers at separate airports.
They can create an intuitive experience, with foresight for travel exhaustion, your work schedule and your need for sleep. They will find you the transportation service that is known for its punctuality, service and transparent billing.
A travel agent can book the hotel that offers the business amenities and comforts that you need, as well as a reasonable location.
You Don’t Have the Time to Do Research
A large part of a successful business trip is research.
Knowing where to take clients for dinner, knowing which hotels have the amenities you need, finding the right car service to handle your commutes…these prospects take time that many business people simply don’t have.
Another thing corporate travel managers can do is negotiate. They have negotiation skills that most typical executive travelers don’t have, and they can get you a good price. They’ll do the research it takes to find the best, most valuable deals. All you have to do is hire them.
If planning corporate travel is a constant headache, it might be time to invest in the expertise of a corporate travel manager.