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Corporate Travel: How to Keep the Expenses Down

Stacy Tolkin
Oftentimes it is essential to send employees abroad. Whether they are meeting important clients, other potential employees or representing the business at an event, employee travel is unavoidable. So, how can you ensure that their expenses don't come back too high? Take a look at these corporate travel strategies for keeping costs to a minimum.

Pre-agreeing Your Budget

It's Time to Talk...

Ask your employee how much money they think they will need during the trip. Get them to outline food, accommodation and flight costs and look over their proposed amount.

If you think it is reasonable, then go ahead and agree to stick to that budget. If the price is too high then you might have to consider negotiating.

Understand Their Needs...

Make sure that you really take the time to consider your employee's financial proposal. After all, they are heading abroad for the company, so they do need to be correctly supported while overseas.

But Be Clear With Them...

Make sure that you are clear with them that they do need to be a little bit frugal. Heading abroad to represent a corporation can be an exciting experience and you don't want your employee getting carried away with the idea that you will pay for anything they decide to buy.

Set restrictions and be honest about wanting to save some pennies.

Booking Flights and Accommodation

Take the Lead...

If you take the lead with booking the flights and accommodation, you have the opportunity to find something less frivolous than if your employee were booking it.

Remember, they are doing a service for the company, so don't leave them with poor accommodation. Find a balance between financially appropriate and good quality.

Make Use of Helpful Resources...

Passing the Information Along...

Once you have found a pool of money saving and budgeting resources, you can pass them to your employee. This will help them to really take the budgeting process seriously.

Where to Start...

Here are a few resources that you and your employee may want to make use of: 
  • Parking at Airports
  • AirB&B
  • SkyScanner
  • Trivago
  • Travel Supermarket
  • DealChecker
  • LastMinute.com
  • TravelMoney - Money Saving Expert

Keeping Track...

Getting the Information Back

Ask your employee to keep a record of all of their receipts and spending for you to look through. You don't have to keep too much track on what they are doing.

However, knowing that you will look through their receipts afterwards may encourage them to stay reasonable with their spending.

No expensive bottles of champagne!

Review The Expenses With Them

Being Encouraging...

Go over your employees financial successes once their trip has ended. This is a great opportunity to encourage them through positive reinforcement, thus getting them to keep the costs to a minimum in the future.

What Are The Other Tips?

Midweek Flying...

Booking a midweek flight is always more likely to be cheaper than booking a weekend flight, so be sure to book midweek!

Off-Peak Travel...

Try not to send employees on work related travel, during the school holidays. Costs can inflate to three times the amount; so be careful!

Self-catered Accomodation...

If a worker is heading out for a prolonged period of time then consider going for a self-catered accommodation option.

This will allow them to get cheaper supermarket food and make meals from their accommodation, rather than going out for dinner or ordering room service every night.

Give Them a Work Schedule...

Even though they may be out of office, you are still paying them for their time to work. Employers often forget to assign employees work to complete during the time that they are not at meetings, meeting clients or representing the company.

Give them their normal working load and their normal time off.

Be Supportive...

Saving money on corporate travel is great, but make sure that you are still supporting your employee adequately. They may be nervous and under pressure, so make sure that you are supportive of them during their journey. This will allow them to capitalise on the journey, rather than become stressed out because of it.


Saving money on corporate travel can be done, it just takes a bit of teamwork and determination. Talk to your employee, book up accommodation, make use of online resources and encourage your employee to be super spending savvy!

May your next corporate journey be the cheapest one yet!