Business Trips can be tedious and expensive. Nevertheless, they are often the cost- literally and figuratively- of doing business. While booking hotel accommodations and flights are often the largest (and unavoidable) business trip expenditures, one may be surprised how quickly the smaller expenses can add up. However, there are five simple ways to cut costs and streamline the business trip experience effectively manage travel expenses associated with business travel.
1) Plan When You Pack
Checking a bag, particularly for a short business trip, will only serve to cost you unnecessary time and money. By using only carry-on luggage, you can avoid checked baggage fees that can range from $25 to $50 per bag. Additionally, you avoid any complications when flights are delayed or bags are misplaced. When you have your bags with you, traveling becomes less expensive and even more convenient. After all, in business, time is money. So, why spend it waiting at the luggage carousel when you can be on your way to that important meeting?
2) Bring Your Own Snacks
It may seem to be a simple concept, but vital nonetheless. Airport food is often unhealthy, and certainly overpriced. By packing healthy snacks such as nuts, dried fruits, and protein bars, travelers can fend off both hunger and the expense of caloric and bland prepackaged airplane food. In the short term, you are saving money. Long term, you feel healthier and more energetic to face the journey ahead.
3) Airport Transfer Versus Taxi
One of the most under valued business travel resources is that of the airport transfer . Booking a shared airport transfer for the journey from the airport to your hotel often comes with a sizable savings. For example, in New York City, a one way trip from JFK to a Manhattan Hotel can cost nearly $60 when a shared transfer can be booked for less than $20. That’s a savings of nearly $40 for a one-way trip.
4) Stretch Your Per Diem
Many hotels around the United States, and even globally, offer complimentary breakfast for their guests. While the nature of these offerings can vary greatly from city to city, or even property to property, starting the day off with a free meal is a wonderful way to stretch your per diem budget. By taking advantage of complimentary breakfast, you now have one less meal to cover with your per diem. Popular travel sites will often highlight hotels with free breakfast as one of their amenities.
5) Expense Tracking and Reporting Made Easy
Quite often, the aftermath of a business trip is the drudging task of sorting through receipts and filing the infamous expense report. However, that can lead to expenses being mismanaged during the trip. One of the most effective ways to manage (and minimize) travel expenses is to keep track of them is with an app such as XpenseTracker. The right app will let you take a photo of your receipt, label your expenses accordingly, make any necessary currency conversions, and easily export your information in pdf and excel formats perfect for simplifying those end-of-trip reports.
Whether traveling for business sporadically or frequently, it is important for the bottom line to effectively manage travel expenses wherever possible. Implementing these five handy habits into your business travel routine will certainly help you minimize any unnecessary travel costs and add more to your business’ bottom line.