10 things to look for in a corporate travel provider

Selecting the ideal corporate travel provider isn’t simply a matter of finding someone to book your flights and accommodation – it’s about entrusting a partner who will seamlessly align with your business goals, ensure traveller safety, and enhance the ROI of every business trip. 

Whether you’re a globetrotting executive or a meticulous travel manager, ensuring that every detail of your company’s travel experience is perfectly planned is pivotal. Here are 10 important points to consider when researching which Travel Management Company is right for you.  

1. Technology versus human touch 

While online booking tools are great for those low-value, simple trips (such as a train journey or UK-based hotel stay), booking more complex itineraries through them can be tricky and confusing. One of the great things about Travel Counsellors for Business is that you can use myTC Online to book your basic business trips, while still benefiting from the personal touch of your dedicated Travel Counsellor.  

Of course, for anything more complicated, your Travel Counsellor will perfectly plan your flights, accommodation, events space, and anything else you and your business need – freeing up your time to focus on everything else.  

If the TMCs you’re researching only offer an online booking tool, you might find that you waste valuable time sorting out travel, without the full range of options that you’d have access to if you went through an agent.  

2. Round-the-clock support 

While technology plays a significant role, it’s not infallible. When the unforeseen happens, there must be a knowledgeable human at the other end to resolve issues efficiently. Insist on a provider that offers 24/7 support. Knowing you and your colleagues can call on a person, not a machine, at any moment provides a vital safety net for your travellers and peace of mind for you. 

3. Product inventory 

As previously mentioned, using just an online booking tool can be restrictive in terms of product inventory – this is because some airlines have distribution strategies that dictate what can be listed on an online booking tool, and what can be booked via an agent.  

Your provider should have a robust inventory of travel products and services and be able to accommodate various travel needs and preferences. Every business is different, and no request should be too ‘out there’ if the provider has a diverse product portfolio to offer you.  

4. Data-driven insights 

In order to optimise your company’s travel programme, a corporate travel provider must offer in-depth reporting and analytics. These insights can uncover opportunities to reduce costs, improve trip efficiencies, and guide policy adjustments that align with your overall business strategy. Clear and customisable reports should be tailored to your company’s KPIs, allowing for actionable data analysis. 

5. Commitment to sustainability 

Sustainability in corporate travel is increasingly important. A responsible travel provider should offer options to reduce the environmental impact of travel, like carbon offset programmes, a wide range of sustainable accommodation options, or promoting alternative transport means for shorter distances. They should also leverage reporting and analytics to advise how you can make more environmentally friendly travel decisions as a business.  

6. Niche market specialisations 

Some corporate travel providers focus on certain sectors or destinations, which can be a significant advantage if they align with your corporate travel needs – for example, some may be experts in the marine and oil sectors, while others cater to organisations in the entertainment industry. This specialisation can translate to deeper industry knowledge, better deals, and smoother logistics. 

7. Above and beyond safety measures 

Safety is non-negotiable in corporate travel. Providers must be at the forefront of ensuring duty of care for all travellers. This includes robust risk management policies, tracking and communication tools, and, when needed, access to crisis management guidance. They should be well-versed in local laws and regulations and have a clear understanding of any potential travel health risks. 

8. Expertise in complex itineraries  

Not all corporate travel is straightforward. For companies that manage complex itineraries, with multiple destinations, large groups, or intricate visa processes, a travel provider with proven experience in this area is a must. Consider providers who have successfully managed similar itineraries and have a thorough understanding of the legal and logistical intricacies involved.  

9. Scalability to meet growth 

Your corporate travel provider should be capable of handling your business’ increasing travel volumes and requirements as it grows. A scalable service is adaptable and can accommodate changes in your travel patterns without compromising quality. You should be confident that no matter how much your business expands, your travel provider can keep pace without faltering. 

10. Reputation and credentials  

The proof is in the pudding. A company’s history, market reputation, and compliance with industry standards and regulations are paramount. Check for certifications, awards in the industry, and customer reviews on websites such as TrustPilot. This shows a provider’s commitment to maintaining high standards and lets you gauge their track record for delivering on promises. 

By considering these ten points, you’ll be well-equipped to select a corporate travel provider that not only meets but exceeds your company’s travel needs. The right partner will ensure that each trip becomes a strategic business advantage, leaving your team to focus on the important work at hand. 

If you’d like to find out more about the difference Travel Counsellors for Business could make to your organisation, get in touch today to learn how our personal approach to travel management could make your life easier.  

For any enquiries, or to find out more, give David Ashworth a call on 01704 877893, visit the website https://www.travelcounsellors.co.uk/david.ashworth/ , or follow David on social media: