Get With the Program!

Finding the right travel policy for your business can be a huge challenge. Before embarking, start making a checklist about your lodging dos and don’ts, and you’ll be well on your way to a well-managed corporate travel project.

Let’s start with the basics. The following questions should help you customize every future business trip:

Who should be subject to the travel policy? Should it apply equally to all levels of employees? –No one can escape from policies, but will your company practice policy differently based on an employee’s position or department? For example, will sales get a more sizable meal budget when they’re treating prospects to dinner? Is anyone authorized to travel with their plus one?

How forceful should the travel policy be? –On a scale of 1-10 for leniency, where do you want to place your travelers? You can’t afford to watch your corporate budget slip away, but you also don’t want your travelers to get discouraged with harsh policies. Are you willing to tailor your policy to employee demands, or do you want to stick to the program no matter what? Figure out what your boundaries are before your traveling teams start packing their bags.

Should there be an international policy? Should each country have its own policy? –If you’re dealing with international travel, this is a question you must consider. Will you have a different policy for each country your travelers visit, or maintain a universal standard regardless of location? For example, do you have the same per diem in Canada that you do in the United States? What if reservation prices are generally higher in Canada?

How about reservations in high demand markets? Booming cities like NYC and LA get get expensive when booking travel, with higher average costs per room night. Will you aim for a more budget-friendly reservation at the expense of less comfort or choice amenities?

Whatever your goals, CLS can help you enforce travel policies so they can line up ideally to meet your financial guidelines and managerial needs. This is not our first rodeo–We’ve done this before with 10 million+ traveler nights, and we’ve consistently made booking and policy management easier for companies like yours.

Let’s get down to the details: If you’re planning a travel project, chances are, you’ll need a hotel reservation; that’s where we fall into place. How are you planning to manage hotel booking? Here’s what you need to know before planning your reservation policy strategy:

How should hotel rooms be booked?–”Single or double rooms?” That’s only the beginning of the questions you need to ask before you  reserve your rooms. You’ll also need to consider these: Does your hotel offer smoking rooms? Truck parking? Complimentary breakfast?

How much should employees pay for hotel rooms?– When you work with CLS, you can just tell us your budget range and hotel segment, and we’ll set up a room in our nifty Web Genesis system. If we find a great room for you that also happens to be overpriced, we’ll get a pop-up warning that won’t let us book the room unless we get approval first. Don’t forget–you’ll get a better deal if you send in a request just one day earlier.

What are the circumstances in which employees should be allowed to book higher-quality hotel rooms than would ordinarily be permitted?–Sometimes we run out of choices when we run out of time. For example, major weather events crowd hotels with relief workers and might limit hotel options.

What about this: You need truck parking, and the small town to which you’re traveling offers only two hotel options. One has truck parking, and one does not. And let’s assume that the one with that extra amenity comes in at a heftier price point. Are you willing to compromise?

We don’t want you to, so this is where we start working some magic. We want you to have what you need AND get the price you want. Travel policy at CLS is your way to help us help you get the best experience possible. Even in a tight spot, our negotiation team works hard to make sure your voice is heard and your price point isn’t compromised.

1Comment
  • Carol Gabelmann
    Posted at 16:22h, 29 September Reply

    We are a vendor of CLS please let me know how to update our system to be on line with you all. Thank You–Carol Gabelmann–GM

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