Cash-strapped startups often need to travel for marketing purposes or to visit clients and potential sales leads. These trips quickly bring money into the company but can also become one of the largest financial burdens on the spreadsheets. In fact, when money is tight, one of the first expenses to get cut is travel. However, smart companies can save when they’re on the road if they plan their trips correctly. Use these tips to save on your business travels.
Plan Your Trips Strategically
Companies need to know the best time to book their trips and the best months to visit their destinations. For example, January and February are the busiest months to book travel as people try to spend their holiday money. This drives the cost of flights up to account for increased demand. The best time to book is actually in the fall, when kids are back at school and parents aren’t planning their holiday travel yet.
Furthermore, the cost of traveling goes up for certain destinations during the year. Understanding the best months to visit somewhere can continue saving your team money. Before you book, look for any major sporting events or festivals that could drive up travel prices, and consider switching to a different week if something big is happening.
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Sign Up for Loyalty Rewards Cards
Many companies have cash-back credit cards that provide at least 1 percent cash back per transaction, if a company spends $1 million annually, it can save $10,000 just by using that credit card for most transactions. Furthermore, loyalty programs that offer free hotel stays can save companies thousands in a short time.
When looking for a rewards program, try to find options that offer flexibility and full coverage. For example, the American Airlines SkyMiles program covers airlines in the Star Alliance like British Air and Lufthansa, which means companies aren’t limited to domestic air travel. The Hotels.com loyalty plan lets you earn free stays on any hotel you book, regardless of the brand. This flexibility means you’ll be earning free nights, miles, and cash back wherever you go.
Use Money Transfer Services
Money transfer specialists work to find the best possible exchange rates and try to make sure they’re as competitive as possible. They have to, or else they’ll go out of business. This means that using a money transfer service can help you get a better deal if you need to transfer money to Brazil than you would if you were to go through your bank.
Research different money transfer services and financial institutions to learn about their fees. Some exclude fees for the first 30 days, while others only charge a flat fee per transaction. Conversely, banks tend to charge a percent of the currency exchanged, which means you keep paying more as you transfer more money. If you already use a money transfer service for business, you could save significantly by switching to a better provider.
These are just a few ways for driving down travel costs in your company so that you can continue generating leads without going broke.