ASATA Column: Travel Policy. What travel policy?

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No need to debate the reputation of the millennial business traveller and how it influences travel policy. Chances are that there are quite a few millennials travelling for business in your company. You might even be one of them?

Millennials are probably the most misunderstood workforce generation. But, if there is one thing that is truly giving travel managers grey hairs, it’s the tendency of millennials to buck the travel policy. The onus is on the corporate and Travel Management Company to keep their travellers safe.

But, how can your ASATA accredited TMC keep you safe if they have no idea where you are because you’ve booked your travel off-programme or decided not to inform anyone that you’re spontaneously changing your afternoon schedule? The millennial traveller isn’t the only one to blame though. During a recent Institute of Travel Management Summit in London, International SOS pointed out that the travel industry is evolving and companies need to evolve with the industry if they want to keep travellers safe.

Does your company’s travel policy include sharing economy options for example? Do you know if you are covered when you’re extending your business trip to Paris by tagging on a weekend break on a bleisure trip? And what about social media? Are you aware of your company’s social media policy? Did you know, for example, that announcing your travel plans on social media could put you at great risk and even invalidate certain insurance policies?

Business travel today is risky, and travellers need to comply with their company’s travel policy for their own safety. On the other hand, companies also need to make sure the travel policy is relevant and up to date. The Boston Consulting Group forecasts that millennials will account for half of all business travel spending by year 2020. Businesses and industry players should leverage this insight and adapt their travel policies and business models respectively, to remain relevant to the millennial travellers.

Turn to your ASATA TMC with your concerns. They’ll liaise with your company and help you update your travel policy to make it relevant for travel today.

Otto de Vries

ASATA CEO

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