Businesses using loyalty programs to capitalize on corporate travel
Wednesday, November 7, 2012
Staying in serviced apartments and corporate housing is one way for executives to maximize their productivity and reduce travel budgets. With business travel expected to increase as the nation's economy improves, many hotel chains and other service providers are using loyalty programs as a way to attract corporate travelers.
A recent report from Wakefield Research indicates that many companies are increasing executives' travel budgets as the economy begins to stabilize. Approximately 39 percent of business travelers reported being allocated additional funds for corporate travel, but that does not diminish the need for companies to maximize their travel budgets and save money whenever possible. Loyalty programs are being seen as one way for business travelers to reduce expenditure without compromising on the quality of their experience.
"Smart businesses are using a variety of methods to extend their dollars and save on travel costs," said Orit Keren, president and chief executive officer of OKT Corporate Travel Management. "Cashing in on loyalty points, using travel consolidator fares and carrying on luggage to avoid baggage fees are just a few of the ways business travelers are saving."
While reward programs may see an increase in popularity as companies seek to gain a return on their investment in business travel, corporate apartments offer unparalleled service at excellent rates - something that may become increasingly important to firms as the economy begins to stabilize.
Closing the deal
Some companies have turned to technology in order to reduce their travel budgets. Video conferencing has become increasingly popular in recent years, but according to Investor's Business Daily, nothing compares to doing business face-to-face.
"Seeing people is critical," Richard Phillips, chief executive officer of Pilot Freight Services, told the news source. "You don't get a connection on the phone or email as much as you do in person."
Phillips' opinions are shared by many executives, who feel that conducting business in person is the best way to close deals, establish new relationships and forge connections in emerging markets. As a result, companies often invest in business travel as a potential growth strategy. While corporate travel is seen as essential by many companies, the need to save money and maximize investment remains a challenge. Serviced apartments and corporate housing offer smart executives a way to experience the comforts of home on the road, without breaking the bank.