Corporate TravelHere’s how business travellers can ensure a productive trip in a world still plagued with travel restrictions and complications.

What corporate travellers need to know

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CWT’s Belinda Hindmarsh shares some tips on how corporate travellers can still enjoy a fruitful business trip while travelling in these turbulent times.
CWT’s Belinda Hindmarsh shares some tips on how corporate travellers can still enjoy a fruitful business trip while travelling in these turbulent times. Photo Credit: GettyImages/sRawpixel Ltd

Though most border restrictions have been lifted, travellers now face a different type of complication in terms of reduced air capacity, staff shortage, lost luggage, and price increases for both airfare and accommodations, which especially throws a spanner in the works for business trips.

According to Belinda Hindmarsh, chief growth officer of CWT, business travel is at its highest since the pandemic struck. “Global transactions have crossed 50% of pre-pandemic levels – a sharp increase from the beginning of the year when transactions were at 20-30% of 2019 levels.”

But despite business trips ramping up, corporate travellers are plagued with more issues than ever as the travel industry struggles to keep up with the demand. In light of that, Hindmarsh recommends keeping the following tips in mind when planning for a business trip.

1. Consider a one-day buffer

One or two extra days won’t hurt as it’ll offer business travellers more leeway in the circumstance that their connecting flight gets abruptly cancelled or some countries, particularly in Asia, still require testings to be done.

2. Check the latest restrictions and entry requirements

MyCWT website has a “Are you read to travel?” section that provides an easy way to check the varied restrictions across different destinations. Over her recent business trips, Hindmarsh discovered that the Covid situation and levels of comfort within meetings still varies. For example, masks are still largely worn during business meetings in Japan, however in the Northern Hemisphere masks have largely been put aside in office environments.

3. Check Covid rules

Don’t assume that Covid protocol is the same everywhere. Business travellers should check rules and protocol with other parties they’ll be visiting to avoid any awkwardness on arrival.

4. Book through the company’s preferred channels

Business travellers booking via their company’s channels can keep them safe and supported at all times while travelling, especially when the number of infection rates isn’t reported with the same frequency as it once was.

5. Download travel apps

Downloading all the relevant travel apps in advance can ensure that corporate travellers get the most up-to-date information related to their flights, and access to support if scheduling changes. They may even be able to check-in or check-out of their hotel via the app, saving the need to queue at the hotel

6. Update profile information

Corporate travellers should keep their profile information up to date with their travel management provider and within their travel tools. It’s also beneficial to ensure the front desk can contact them should mobile check-in/out options apply, and to save time during the booking process.

7. Practise sustainability

Business travellers can opt to minimise their carbon footprint during the trip by looking for sustainable airlines or hotels. Hindmarsh also advises to forgo the buffet breakfast as it contributes to a lot of food waste, and to opt for the a la carte option instead.

8. Practise social responsibility

Hindmarsh encourages travellers to avoid travelling if they’re feeling unwell and to take a home covid test on the day of departure, alongside bringing some extra test kits with them on their trip.

9. Understand that the travel ecosystem is not back to full strength

With scheduling adjustments, longer wait times and delays a reality as staffing levels and capacity are added back into the system, following these tips can help mitigate some of the friction and ensure your business trip is not only successful, but also an enjoyable experience.

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