Why Use an Incentive Travel Specialist?

13 April 2016

The age of price comparison sites, strained budgets, and eagle-eyed CFOs has made it harder than ever to get your event planned, justified and signed off. More than ever, execs and assistants are under pressure to make budgets reach a little further, and all too often that can lead to cutting corners, losing focus and failing to deliver on the potential value of your event.

It’s a short-sighted outlook that could send less experienced execs to a corporate travel agent, or worse, to the internet and a whole world of DIY event trouble. In the current economic climate everyone wants more for less, and we couldn’t agree more—budgets should work harder, events should deliver greater, longer-lasting value. In fact, that’s exactly why you should be using an incentive travel specialist when it comes to planning a trip tailored to celebrate big wins, inspire teams to greatness, and drive results hard. Let us explain...

The Best Deal for You Is the Best Deal for Us

The standard corporate travel agent’s entire pay structure is often built around commission from hotels, airlines and tour operators. That makes them unsuitable for arranging incentive travel as it gives their entire organisation provider biases that are nothing to do with what is best for you, and everything to do with who is offering the highest commission on a given day.

Specialists understand that the first rule of incentive travel is to let the client, delegates and business objectives of the trip lead all of the major decisions, from destinations and transport to hotels and experiences.

Buying Power Based on Experience

Travel agents’ buying power tends to rely on regularity, allowing them to negotiate reduced corporate rates on common routes and well-used hotels. That means that if you’re looking to book your bi-weekly flight from Heathrow – JFK you might be in luck.

If you’re looking to book a once in a lifetime trip to Dubrovnik for 30 top performing salespeople with flights, transfers, rooms and a bespoke programme of money-can’t-buy experiences... well, you might need a company whose buying power comes from a wealth of experience, a deep understanding of your requirements and the hospitality landscape, and well established vendor relationships.

Full Trip Management

We’re not talking about a package tour deal with free transfers and an all-inclusive bar and restaurant at the hotel... although if that’s what you’re looking for we can help. We’re talking about an experienced, connected set of hands taking care of every aspect of your trip, from initial booking, through a whirlwind of impossible experiences, to getting everyone home again. Travel agents get you there, while incentive travel specialists work with you to decide where ‘there’ is, what you’ll be doing there, how the trip relates to key business aims and much more.

Connections & Relationships

The best specialists in corporate incentive travel are truly connected, with an ear to the ground in the hottest destinations, best hotels and most unique experiences. We have relationships built over decades of mutually beneficial working, and a keen understanding of how those relationships can be leveraged as reduced rates, exclusive offers and measurable value for our clients.

Depth of Understanding

An in depth understanding of the travel, hotel and hospitality landscape is a given with incentive travel specialists... but an end-to-end understanding of your organisation, why you’re taking your trip, and how it aligns with and fulfils key business objectives is even more valuable. Bespoke itineraries that drop jaws and broaden horizons simply don’t matter unless they also drive real results.

Understanding the Key Metrics

While we understand the importance of delivering a unique experience dripping with wow-factor on budget, the initial outlay isn’t the most important number to consider when it comes to your trip. Measuring ROI is the key to successful incentive travel—so your trip needs to have management, monitoring and measurement at its core. Demonstrating ROI shows the value of your trip, makes justifying budget for future trips easier and ensures that your outlay has been worthwhile.

Using an incentive travel specialist is how you get more for less—more value from the same incentives budget, more results for fewer man hours spent planning and implementing, more experiences, more understanding, more ROI and more justification for your event. To talk to specialists who spend every day planning and delivering next level events and trips for some of the world’s most exciting companies, get in touch now via the contact page, LinkedIn or Twitter.