Creating an effective travel itinerary for corporate travellers is difficult.
It can feel a lot like ‘herding cats’, from the headache of booking, organising, and keeping track of flight schedules to making arrangements for travel, hotels and meetings.
If you're responsible for planning and executing a corporate business trip, there are many moving parts. You want to make sure that your travel itinerary is strategic, organised, well thought out, and a little fun.
Below are some hot tips to help you create an effective travel itinerary and some tools we think will change how you book corporate travel in the future.
Get to know your traveller
When planning a business trip, you want to make sure the travel arrangements align with the employee’s preferences.
Do they like inflight entertainment? Are they a gym junkie? Have they recently turned vegan or have a gluten intolerance?
Knowing these details may not seem important, but they will make the trip far more enjoyable for the employee if you book a hotel with a gymnasium or submit their food preferences to a meeting organiser.
Prioritising the most important parts of the trip will make it easier to organise everything else around it.
If the goal of the trip is a presentation or to attend an important meeting, make sure you allow enough time beforehand for last-minute travel interruptions.
Allowing enough time means the traveller is not stepping off the plane and rushing from the airport to deliver an important sales pitch.
Go the ‘extra’ mile
Outside of the key purpose of the trip, the employee may have some extra things they want to achieve while away.
Perhaps they want to work on a key business document or use some of their free time for sightseeing.
Find out what extra activities they might want included or things they would like to accomplish and allow some extra time in the schedule.
Good planning never rarely fails
Planning in advance ensures all meetings, check-in times, and flights are arranged accordingly, and it leaves room for last-minute changes.
Advanced planning, at least one month ahead, will ensure that scheduling meeting times suits the traveller's other commitments.
Another benefit of booking early is the cost savings on hotels and flights, and it gives the organiser a chance to check everything beforehand.
Create an Itinerary
A summary of the trip details is essential. There are many moving parts when it comes to organising a business trip.
Start with the most important dates and times and fill in the details. An itinerary should incorporate all relevant logistics, such as transportation, hotels, meals, and timing for each event.
A travel itinerary saves the organiser and the traveller from going through multiple documents and trawling through emails to find information.
The must-haves for a travel itinerary
- Travel and transport details should include a breakdown of each leg of the trip
- Arrival and departure times at the airport and allowing for travel time
- Flight and seat numbers to enable quick access upon arrival
- Hotel address and reservation number for taxi drivers and reception staff
- Check-in and check-out times that include late early check-in, and late check-out details
- Car rental and parking details if the traveller will be self-driving on the trip
- Meeting/conference times and venue addresses for easy input into google maps or to give to drivers
- Tickets for conferences or events
- Maps that outline where venues are and where meetings will take place
- Nearby amenities such as restaurants, coffee shops, and places of interest
- Day-to-day schedule details that outline business commitments and downtime
- Weather details and what to pack
- What to wear if there is little time to change between events or meetings
- Relevant contact information for business contacts
Don’t worry be happy
Travel apps don’t just make life easier, but they also make travel stress-free. Apps such as Google maps and time buddy can show you where you are and the local time to avoid missing a meeting.
Other apps such as Uber and LocalEats are also useful so you can book a restaurant and a car ride within minutes.
Placing all of your travel apps in one folder on your device is a great time saver and ensures you can find everything you need quickly.
Don’t forget to put everything in one place
Having everything in one place makes it easier if you are the trip organiser and saves on frustration for the traveller if everything is easy to locate.
Most travellers expect digital copies of their travel details and want everything accessible in one place. Gone are the days of having to flip through piles of paper to find reservation numbers and flight details.
Travel-management software has also made organising a business trip so much easier. It is a game-changer for travellers and organisers. It allows each person to log in, check booking details and travel arrangements, and get help if needed.
Take travel management software for a test-drive
Locomote takes the pain out of booking corporate travel by streamlining the entire process. From flight bookings to hotel reservations, everything is managed on one simple and reliable platform.
Track spending, get approvals, and manage travel from start to finish.
See how Locomote works by getting an in-depth walk-through.
Book a demo today.