Traveling can be a huge, repetitive expense especially for a company. However, it is also something that most corporate entities can’t do without. As the a founder of task management application Task Pigeon, minimizing costs/expenditure is something I give a lot of thought to.
And just because traveling is a necessity doesn’t mean that it has to drain your resources! There are a few tips you can follow in order to minimize your expenditure on corporate traveling. These include:
Create a Fair but Clear Travel Policy
If you are sending your employees to a different city, it might help if you have a clear travel policy. This doesn’t mean that you have to be frugal: you only need to set clear travel expectations.
For instance, make it clear what kind of hotels they can stay in. Is it up to them to choose whether to stay in a five star or a four star hotel? Give them direction on what the company can afford; it will help you save money.
Another avenue for saving money is clearing the air on what kind of flights they can book. Can they fly business class, or can the company only afford an economy class flight? Being open and having a clear travel policy can go a long way in minimizing travel expenditure.
Designate Preferred Vendors
Most vendors reward loyalty and you can capitalize on this to help cut on traveling costs. The first step is to create a list of designated hotels and airlines, and to make sure you use only their services. This is beneficial in two ways.
For one thing, working with specific companies makes it fairly easy to predict how much they charge for their rooms or flights. This can help you plan your budget better.
Secondly, remaining loyal to given vendors makes it easy for them to give you discounts. This is especially true if you are a large company, as you can ask for corporate discounts. Over time, you will end up saving a considerable amount of money.
Fly on Cheaper Days
Flight costs vary depending on demand. Mondays and Fridays are typically the most expensive days as people fly in and out of cities for work.
Armed with this knowledge, you can cut costs by flying your staff on the less busy days of the week. If a meeting can be held either on Monday or Tuesday, opt for Tuesday when the flight costs are far much cheaper.
Fly in and Out in a Day
Staying at a hotel costs money, so you should avoid having your staff stay overnight when away on an assignment. A little more planning is all you need to ensure that they don’t spend a night in a hotel.
You can start by scheduling most of their meetings in the morning hours. They might have to make it to the airport rather early, but there is no reason why they shouldn’t be on a flight back home in the afternoon.
Having your employees fly in and out saves you money you would have otherwise spent on their accommodation. You also don’t have to cater for their meals and this will also save you some money.
Set a Daily Budget for Food/ Travel
This is very much like the earlier point on having a clear travel policy. You need to set clear boundaries of how much your employees can spend when traveling.
It is important that your budget be fair and reasonable. You don’t want your employees to be always anxious about how they will meet their basic needs when they are travel ling for work.
In order to minimize corporate travel expenditure, try as much as possible to cut out any extravagant spending. Only provide those things that are necessary for your employees to carry out their jobs comfortably.
Because of how the expenses of traveling tend to add up, you may be tempted to take drastic measures to reduce them. Sometimes, those drastic measures can do your company more harm than good.
You would be better off implementing small effective changes a little at a time. Start by setting a clear travel policy so that your employees know how much of the company money they are expected to spend.
Secondly, always use the services of particular vendors. The predictability and discounts you get can help you save loads of money.
Also, fly your employees on the cheaper days in order to spend less on transport. Arrange meetings in a way that makes it possible for employees to fly in and out on the same day to cut on the cost of accommodation. Finally, create a clear budget of how much your employees can spend when traveling.
All of these may seem like rather simple tips, but they do deliver the results you want. Be sure to try them.