Is an Online Booking Tool Right for Your Company? Choosing an Online Booking Tool for Travel
Deciding whether or not to utilize an online booking tool for travel is a big decision for your company. Ultimately, it can generate significant savings while providing a user-friendly, satisfying experience for your business travellers.
What is an online booking tool?
An online booking tool is a secure, web-based tool that has been designed with parameters specific to your company’s travel program. This gives your team the ability to book their own travel while giving them options that are in-policy and align with your company’s preferred procedures. For example, if you have contracted rates with a supplier, for air or hotels for example, you can ensure your employees are booking with those vendors wherever possible to help you achieve your volume targets.
How are they different from other travel booking websites?
Travel booking websites show you what is available at any given time per the search criteria. However, your search results are not company-specific, with enforced guidelines or recommendations for your employees. Users can book anything they like with no consideration for budget, travel times, fare rules, advanced notice, etc. These websites will not be able to flag out-of-policy bookings, making it difficult to identify travellers booking outside of the parameters set by your company. They also pose difficulty for your company’s reporting as you are not provided with data to accurately track your travel spend.
Another important consideration is that when your employees make travel arrangements using this method, they can spend hours comparing results on various websites looking for the best deals, decreasing your company’s overall productivity.
A corporate online booking tool offers your employees instant access to all published rates and your contracted pricing, eliminating the need to review alternative sources.
Benefits of Choosing an Online Booking Tool for Travel
- Offers a one stop shop for travel: You and your employees can book air, hotels and rental cars all from one source. Using an online booking tool for travel is a user-friendly experience.
- Save money: You can set specific limits for travel based on your company travel policies. For instance, you can set restrictions for which fare classes can be booked based on the length of the flight. When your company procedures and policies are followed, you can realize significant savings on travel spend.
- Access to a full inventory: The online booking tool will give you instant access to all published fares as well as your company’s contracted rates with preferred suppliers for air, hotel and so on.
- Save time: your travelling employees can make bookings 24/7 in a timely fashion. They can trust that their search results are the best rates and out-of-policy options will be flagged. They can focus on their business travel goals instead of worrying and spending time on travel logistics.
FAQ About Online Booking Tools
- How do I find an online booking tool for travel? Actually, there are several online travel booking tools to choose from. Your travel management company can review the tools available and help you choose the one that is right for your company.
- Is an online booking tool easy to use? The tools are very user friendly. They work similarly to generic travel websites with the exception that your company’s guidelines have been set up to enforce your travel policies and help save your company time and money.
- Can I get reports out of the tool to track travel spending? Online booking tools capture a lot of data, which your travel management company will analyze with you when you review cost savings opportunities or travel policy amendments.
- What about security? Each traveller will be given a unique user name and password. All bookings will be secure.
- Can someone else book my trips? Yes, most tools have a travel arranger option where you can assign someone within your company the rights to arrange travel for specific people or the whole company, whichever suits your needs better.
Where Do We Begin?
The best place to start in the process of selecting and implementing an online booking tool is with your travel management company. Your travel management company has access to several of the best tools on the market and can help you select the one that is right for your business.
At Vision Travel, we help you choose and implement the right online booking tool based on your company’s unique needs and travel requirements.
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