You know the drill when it comes to business travel: catch a flight, attend meetings and happy hours and/or dinners and other activities with clients. With the costs associated with airline travel, hotel reservations, transportation, and daily breakfast, lunch and dinner, a business trip could end up costing your company a pretty penny, especially if multiple people from the office are traveling. While it is nice to pay for your employee’s meals, hotel and transportation, these costs can add up quickly.

If you’ve ever budgeted for your company then you know you need to factor in some high costs for business travel, especially if you frequently send employees on business trips. What if we told you there is a way to cut down the cost and save your company some money? Keep reading for five tips to cut the cost of business travel!

1. Book trips in advance
If you’ve ever traveled before then you know how expensive airfare and hotel reservations can be; these companies charge a steep price because they know you need their services, often at the last minute. If you know you’re sending your employees on business trips in a given year, book their trips in advance. While you don’t have to plan their trip a year in advance, scheduling to book travel arrangements on your calendar a few months in advance can end up saving your company quite a bit of money, avoiding the cost of booking last minute flights and hotels.

2. Sign up for rewards programs
You may already be signed up for travel rewards programs for personal travel, but it’s wise to sign your company up for rewards programs as well. Many airlines and hotels offer discounts for business travel, you just have to ask and sign up!

Airlines allow businesses to take advantage of their credit card programs that give you miles in return for money spent which adds up quickly. If your employees travel often, it may be wise to sign up for an airline credit card so you can start earning those free miles and saving on airfare!

Hotels also offer rewards programs that can end up saving your company quite a bit. Large hotel chains like Hilton and Starwood offer programs where you earn points for nights stayed in their hotels. These points can add up to free meals, overnights and many other benefits. It’s definitely worth it if you frequently book hotel rooms for your employees.

3. Consider changing your corporate travel policy
Every business has a corporate travel policy, but is yours allowing employees too much freedom when it comes to allowable reimbursed purchases on their trip? Sure, you want to offer to reimburse your employees for three meals a day, but you don’t need to pay for everything like coffee breaks and snacks unless they’re business related. Encourage your employees to take advantage of free continental breakfasts at their hotel to save even more.

4. Open a corporate account with a transportation provider
We all know how expensive it can be to rent a vehicle, especially for an extended business trip. Not only do you have to pay for the vehicle rental, but with it comes the cost of insuring your employees and gas. If you don’t choose to rent a vehicle for your employees, taxi and ridesharing services can end up costing you quite a bit, especially if you’re paying for a large group. Not to mention they don’t reflect an appropriate and professional corporate image.

When you open a corporate account with a transportation provider like Overland Chauffeured Services, you’ll receive exceptional service from a reputable company that will keep your employees safe. A corporate transportation service helps reflect the high standards and proper corporate image you demand, something ridesharing services can’t offer.

5. Opt for a virtual meeting instead
Often times when a company sends employees on a business trip it’s for meeting with a new client or attending a conference. There are, however, certain circumstances where corporate travel could be replaced with a virtual meeting to save money. If the reason for the business trip is simply a meeting with an established client or partner or a routine check in then you could possibly opt for a virtual meeting instead of spending money on travel arrangements. Figure out the end goal of the business trip and determine whether business needs to be handled in person or can be done virtually.

When it comes to business travel, sometimes it’s expensive but necessary for your company. By following the tips above, you’ll be able to cut the cost of business travel to help save money.

As we mentioned above, Overland offers stellar corporate transportation and a safe ride for your employees traveling for business. Whether they’re traveling nationally or across the globe, we can manage all of their transportation needs, from initial reservation through final billing and provide seamless, professional service every step of the way. Through our network affiliations and well-established partnerships with top-ranked chauffeured service operators across the United States and in 350 cities across the globe, we’ll ensure the transportation aspect of their business trip is as smooth as can be. Click here to open a corporate account with Overland today or call (913) 381-3504. We’d love to become a part of your support team and build a long term relationship with you!