At LoungeBuddy, we know that traveling for work can be a lot to manage, both as the person traveling, and the person responsible for setting up travel policies and guidelines. That’s why we’ve partnered with Lola.com, Agile Travel Management to bring you this blog post, where you’ll learn ways to make corporate travel easier on your whole team. Lola.com gives travel managers an easy way to set travel policies and track spend, while allowing travelers to book with their preferred hotels and airlines, and get access to 24/7 support from travel experts. They want to make travel stress-free for everyone, so read on to learn how!
If you have employees who are required to travel for work, you’ve probably heard your share of complaints. Let’s face it - traveling is a stressful experience whether it’s for business or pleasure, but when it’s for business there’s an extra level of stress involved — and typically no beach-front villa waiting for them upon arrival.
But it’s incredibly important to remove as much stress as possible from corporate travel. When your employees are traveling, they are representing your company. They’re bringing in new business, keeping current clients happy, speaking at or attending a conference, or working on professional development to make them a better employee. All of these things reflect back on your company, so their travel experience should be as easy and stress-free as possible.
Here are 5 ways you can make sure that happens:
Pay for memberships that reduce the amount of time spent waiting in line
There are several memberships a business traveler could have, all of which will help them bypass long security lines, among other benefits. TSA PreCheck costs $85 for a five-year membership, and members get shorter security lines and less hassle. They don’t have to remove shoes, belts, laptops, or liquids. If your employees are traveling internationally often, opt for Global Entry instead. They’ll get all the same benefits as TSA PreCheck, but will also receive expedited security when they re-enter the United States, and for only $100 for a five-year membership. Another option that is slightly more expensive is a CLEAR membership. For $179 per year, travelers will sail through security lines at over 40 airports, stadiums and other venues around the country by scanning their fingerprints and irises instead of waiting for someone to check their IDs.
Buy them access to an airport lounge so they can relax before their flight
With apps like LoungeBuddy, you can gift your travelers a stress-free pre-flight experience at hundreds of airports worldwide. If they are on their way to a big meeting, let them enjoy a meal before their flight. If they have a long layover, give them the opportunity to take a nap between flights. Or, if they are delayed, make sure they have access to a comfy chair and phone charger during their wait. Lounge prices start at just $25, so it’s an inexpensive way to provide a little something extra to your traveling employees.
Let them use their rewards accounts and keep their loyalty points
When an employee is on the road frequently, they are missing important time with their loved ones. A great benefit of traveling for work is the ability to rack up loyalty points that can be used for family vacations. It doesn’t cost anything for you to let your employees book their flights, hotels, and rental cars with their preferred carrier and keep the points they earn. Knowing they have an inexpensive family vacation option in the future will make it a little easier to be away from loved ones. (This is easily one of the Lola.com features that we get the most love for, and one that we encourage all companies to do whether they use Lola.com or not.)
Take away the need for expense reporting by giving them access to a corporate card
One of the most stressful parts of traveling for work is coming home, compiling multiple receipts, tallying what you spent and submitting that information so they can get reimbursed. Not only can it take time and be a hassle to keep track of everything spent on the road, but if an employee is fronting the costs for expensive flights or hotels, it can be a cause for concern as they wait for their reimbursement. Instead, consider giving your travelers access to a shared corporate card, or providing them with their very own company card. This will allow employees to put all travel related costs onto that credit card, and will give you full visibility into what they are spending since they’re only using it for travel.
Give travelers access to 24/7 support for when they need help on the road
If you are in charge of your employee’s travel experience, then you have probably received a call or text in the middle of the night when their flight is canceled. In this situation, your best bet is to get on the phone with the airline and get them re-booked. The traveler is stuck waiting to hear what their options are, and you are stuck on hold at 2 am. This is stressful for everyone involved and there is a much better way to handle these kinds of issues. If you implement a travel management solution that offers 24/7 support for your travelers, not only will you not get woken up in the middle of the night, but your travelers will have the ability to work with travel experts who know the best way to get them rebooked in no time. At Lola.com, we decided early on to include this kind of 24/7, expert service to all of our customers because we know how important it is to have access to help whenever they need it. If you've ever been stuck trying to re-book a connection on a business trip, you know what exactly why we made this decision.
Adding even one of these options into your corporate travel process can make a huge difference for your travelers, and make their travel experience much more enjoyable and stress-free.