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10 Inventive Ways to Keep Your Fleet on Time and on Budget

One third of business travel remains unmanaged.

To be exact, 32.4% of corporate travel managers said their company didn’t have a corporate travel agency or platform, according to Skift’s State of Business Travel 2020 report. Another 24% of respondents didn’t even know if their company worked with a travel agency or platform.

Each of these organizations is leaving money on the table in more ways than one. Though managed travel solutions can save you money, they also offer almost unlimited opportunities to save on what’s quite possibly your most priceless asset: time. This especially true when it comes to one of the largest travel related expenditures for businesses – hotels and lodging.

Here are ten ways choosing the right corporate lodging solution can help you save both time and money:

1. Get access to savings on lodging

The average business trip costs $1,268. Traveling to New York City? You’re looking at an even steeper bill at $1,633 per trip. Though the trip itself may be non-negotiable, the rate you pay for lodging is not.

Corporate lodging solutions have collective bargaining power, which is essentially the business travel equivalent of power in numbers. This allows you to snag exclusive discounts for every stay, saving you money every time you have a traveler on the road.

2. Implement a more streamlined booking process

When it comes time to book a hotel, you’ll have countless platforms at your fingertips. But options aren’t always a good thing. Between variations in rate and availability, you might be on the fast-track to analysis paralysis.

The right corporate lodging solution can save you time by streamlining the booking process. Not only will they present you a great rate at the outset, but they also speed things up when it comes time to make a booking through features like an intuitive interface. Better yet? You can take advantage of this convenience by choosing a platform with no booking fees, like Hotel Engine.

3. Support on complex group bookings

Booking travel for one person can feel complicated. But booking a business trip for a large group? That kind of planning can get out-of-hand in a hurry, especially if your travel is currently unmanaged.

Look for a service with an in-house project services team to help you manage these larger reservations. These teams are experts in managing corporate lodging, no matter how big your group or how complicated your booking request. Delegate your most complex group bookings so you can spend more time managing your business like only you can.

4. Big hotel inventory

Don’t sweat over finding a hotel. Though you might feel like crossing your fingers and toes every time you search for lodging along a route, a corporate lodging solution can take the guesswork out of your search.

Some corporate lodging solutions partner with a large network of hotels across the country and even around the world. Tap into their pre-vetted network of lodging options so that you can book with the confidence that you’re staying on route and on budget.

5. Save money on cancellation and fees

When it comes to transportation and logistics, change is the one constant. If floods wash out the highway, wildfires make your pit stops impassable, or any other unforeseen complication arises, you need the flexibility to change and even cancel bookings on the go.

Though hotels understandably don’t welcome cancellations, some corporate lodging solutions can make them easier on your budget. They’ll have already negotiated cancellation terms more favorable than those that are publicly available. All of these policies and fees are also clearly posted, sparing you any surprises down the road.

6. Save time booking rooms

When it comes to transportation and logistics, time is, quite literally, money. Your time is valuable, but so is any time your travelers lose on the road. Not to mention, time spent on travel is time taken away from perfecting your transportation and logistics strategy.

With no hassle bookings, corporate lodging solutions can give you that time back. Skip the research and the negotiating on every booking, and instead select from a set of pre-vetted hotels along your route. You’ll be surprised at the amount of time you’ll get back in your day—and the magic you can work with it.

7. Manage reservations more efficiently

Booking a hotel can take time. But managing your reservations can be just as time consuming. Whether you need to cancel or modify a booking, or even just add amenities to a stay, making changes to an existing reservation is a process.

Ditch spending time on hold and delegate to a customer support team instead. Some lodging solutions lean on customer service representatives to manage reservations so you don’t have to. Call them up 24 hours a day (and often without a wait time) and they can handle any lodging modifications you need.

8. Save time on reporting

Sifting through paper receipts or even analyzing spreadsheets can get overwhelming. Whether you manage one traveler or 100, you’ll have countless lodging expenses to verify and report on. Corporate lodging solutions help you take control of your T&E by automating the most time-consuming aspects of reporting.

Many corporate lodging solutions have personalized dashboards so you can take a quick look at your expenses. You can also take advantage of real-time insights to keep track of travel activity like total usage, spend, and user activity. Better yet, with the click of a button, many of these insights can be rolled into a polished report that’s ready for your company execs.

9. Set and assign travel policies for individual travelers

You can save a lot of time by allowing your travelers to book their own lodging. But you can also create a lot of headaches; travelers may not be as budget-aware as you are, especially if they have their own company card. Though it might feel like you have to either make all the bookings yourself or give up the reins on your T&E, you actually can have both.

With a service like Hotel Engine, you can assign travel policies for your travelers. With this feature, you can set a spending limit for each traveler, which means you can keep the booking process off your plate while ensuring your travelers can’t blow their budgets on a single stay.

10. Ensure you get rewarded for your travel

Hotel chain loyalty points are the gold at the end of the business travel rainbow. So, it’s important to find a solution that allows you to keep earning the hotel chain loyalty points your employer and your employees love. When it comes time to cash in, you’ll be surprised at just how much you can save.

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