April is National Stress Awareness Month, so it seems fitting that we delve into this subject and offer some support and guidance to PAs and Executive Assistants out there.
We are not going to get all deep and go down the Agony Aunt route as we are a bunch of guys, and we wouldn’t know where to start for that matter! However, if you are responsible for booking international business travel, we can certainly provide some sound advice which will improve your efficiency, whilst reducing the anxiety caused when trawling through a multitude of flight options.
If this sounds all too familiar then consider our solutions below:
Wasting too much time looking at flight options
Are you often phased with choosing between so many flight options and can’t see the wood for the trees? Are you searching online and find that the cavalry of flight options is causing you to have a mini-meltdown?
Solution: Why not hand the responsibility on to an experienced TMC. As travel experts, we eat, sleep and breathe travel and have developed a thorough understanding of the airlines, their features, routes and fares. We can quickly filter out what would be the best option for your clients. We can carefully select the most suitable options based on your requirements, enabling you to quickly pick the best for you, et voila!
Too much admin involved when booking flights
Frequent flyer numbers, seating preferences, meal choices, printing e-tickets, completing online check-in, etc… etc… etc…
Solution: We can do all of that for you. We ask you to complete a traveller profile in the first instance, ensuring that all your client preferences are automatically inputted into every subsequent booking. We can organise seating, add frequent flyer numbers, provide full documentation and even check passengers in online.
We also keep a watchful eye on your flight schedule before, during and after you confirm your flights, alerting you to any schedule changes.
No time to research suitable hotels
Spending too much time researching hotels in each city? Checking for a suitable location, price and features? This can seem almost impossible when you also need to ensure that you choose a hotel with a gym, meeting room, restaurant, etc…
Solution: We can do the research for you. We can quickly provide you with three suitable options, based on your criteria. Simply let us know your requirements, and we can quickly source the best hotels which fit these. You can then send these to your travellers who can pick out their favourite.
Prices change between the initial quote and when booking is complete
It is all very well finding the cheapest available options for your passengers but, when these are instant purchase (as most online fares are), you will invariably find that the price has risen by the time you are able to confirm your booking. This can be a source of major frustration for yourself and your clients/staff as business trips take time to confirm and the price changing can severely disrupt your company’s planning.
Solution: We can provisionally hold flights for a specific time-frame. This will guarantee the seats and price, enabling you to go back to your client and finalise your plans, without risking fare hikes. Simply let us know how long your trip is likely to take to finalise, and we will recommend a fare with a suitable payment time limit.
Confused by all the rules on the flight options
Do you need fares that are changeable on the day of departure for those last-minute changes? Or maybe you need the option of a fully flexible fare, which can be changed or cancelled at any time, without the fear of incurring high charges. It can be confusing when considering all the available options.
Solution: A&G have a range of agent fares from fixed to semi and fully flexible. Let us know your requirements, and we will quote, accordingly, depending on your preference. We can provide fares with a variety of flexibility, demystifying the fare rules and clearly displaying the differences in price. You can then simply pass these options on to your clients.
I’m confused about how Brexit will affect corporate travel
Brexit at the moment is a waiting game, and none of us know which way it will go but we have already done some research on the effects on travel when we leave the European Union.
Solution: We will recommend based your travel requirements all the changes and how they will affect your client. This could range from travelling with a visa to driving abroad. We have up to date information and we will inform accordingly depending on your current situation. If you want to find out more about Brexit and travel check out our blog here.
Written By Micala Sansom.