In the current climate, it is unsurprising that business travel is at a standstill – however, this does not mean you should stop thinking about your travel programme. At FCM, we are confident that while it may take some time, businesses will be travelling again. If COVID-19 has taught us anything it is to expect the unexpected, which is why making these changes to your travel programme now will benefit you and your travellers in the medium and long-term.
Here are a few things to consider before travelling again:
When businesses begin to travel, don’t expect things to go back to normal immediately. Employees might even question whether they really need to travel to be able to do their job effectively. Decision makers need to start thinking about how they factor these justified concerns in their travel policy. Security and safety will be critical. Create a guideline in your travel policy encouraging travellers to book with their designated channels instead of allowing all options to all employees. As an example, booking with a travel management company will provide additional traveller security, as your dedicated Travel Manager will be able to rearrange travel plans quickly should a situation arise.
Duty of Care
Many travel management companies offer a variety of tools with duty of care in mind. At CFCM, our expert travel managers are our strongest asset but they are supported by other great tools such as our in-house 24/7 emergency assistance team, our mobile app Sam, and Secure platform.
A simple first step towards ensuring duty of care is covered in your travel programme would be to activate Secure - a comprehensive travel risk management solution available to all FCM customers.
Another easy opportunity to enhance your travel programme is heavily promoting the use of the Sam mobile app, your employee’s personal travel assistant while they are on the road. Complementing Secure seamlessly, Sam offers a ‘share my location’ feature, which feeds directly into the platform – alerting Travel Managers and the appropriate personnel of a traveller’s location should a situation arise.
Include a Traveller Checklist
Are you registered with the government while abroad? Did you purchase insurance? Do you have the proper visas? Do you know how to obtain the visa needed? These are all valid questions that sometimes go unanswered. Create a simple traveller checklist to ensure that your travellers are prepared for the trip ahead. One thing that is critical to that checklist as well – who do I contact if an emergency occurs?
With access to a worldwide network of airfares, hotels, car hire and rail, we ensure your business travel and stay options are unparalleled. FCM's smartSTAY programme includes 3000+ hotels globally and represent properties where we have a personal relationship with the supplier. Through these personal relationships, our team have contacts at each one of these hotels who can assist travellers if something serious happens and the need arises.
Right now, reviewing your travel programme may not be your top priority, especially when very few businesses are still travelling. However, if your business intends to travel once the situation improves, we suggest you start thinking about your policies soon, even if it’s just to add it to the list somewhere. This lull in travel is the perfect time to assess what is and isn’t working in your current programme – so that when your travels do start travelling again all bases are covered.