Top Five Corporate Travel Trends for 2019
Over the past decade or so we’ve seen many changes in the way we travel, many of these resulting from new, digital technology. We book online, we pay online, we check in online – the whole travel process has become much easier.
There are more changes on the way thanks to innovative new developments so let’s take a look at what we can expect on our future business trips overseas.
- Artificial Intelligence (AI) – AI is already here, though many of us don’t recognise it when we come across it! Chatbots are a form of AI and are being used to enable potential customers to get the detailed information they seek at the touch of a button, 24/7. Travel management companies are harnessing the power of chatbots so that would-be travellers can get their queries answered in real time, without having to wait for office staff to begin their workday.
- Blockchain – because there is no single entity controlling payment data, blockchain offers an extra level of security when it comes to payments. Not only does this cut out intermediaries (and their transaction charges), it means that the free market governs the distribution cost.
- Virtual Payments – an increasing number of organisations already use this system which links a unique, controllable credit card number into the payment process. This number represents a one-time payment, unique to a particular situation and invisibly embedded into the complete travel process from booking to reconciliation. Because there is no physical card, the risk of individual abuse is reduced. All travel expenditure can be viewed in real time which helps to control travel expenses. What’s more, virtual payment enables travel spend patterns to be tracked and helps reduce overall costs.
- Internet Gatekeeping – gatekeeping is basically an information filtering process that makes data move through a secure “gate” from one channel to the next. When travellers book through an approved source, their travel experience is personalised whilst ensuring a duty of care towards the organisation for which they work.
- Incentivised Behavioural Change – uses material rewards to influence decision making and help keep down costs to the company. Most business travellers are not concerned with the travel costs to their company, so changing their behaviour so that they make company-friendly decisions when booking travel can help to reduce overall travel costs. For example, if an employee chooses to fly coach class (even though the company travel policy allows for business class flights), they are rewarded for saving their employer money by changing their behaviour (decision).
These are the latest trends that could be used by your company to reduce overall company travel costs and streamline the travel management process. If you’d like a more detailed explanation of how you can save money for your company’s corporate travel, get in touch now and one of our expert team members will be happy to advise you.