How technology is shaping the way we think about business travel
As WiFi tops the list of technologies* that business travellers expect in order to be effective and productive on the road, we take a look at how technology is fast changing the world of business travel.
From mobile apps and social media to crowd sourcing, the on-demand travel services that have been immensely popular in the leisure industry are now catching on in the corporate world. And it's the Millennials (18-34 year olds) that are really embracing this and the latest technology out there.
As early adopters of these technologies, the Millennials use them every day whether they are travelling to work, in the office or are away on business. According to the GBTA Business Traveller Sentiment Index Global Report, they use mobile apps for quick access to their itineraries or to record their expenses, social networks to connect with colleagues on the road and crowd-sourced review sites to research travel providers.
The level of information that these technologies can provide means that today's business travellers are armed with everything they need to ensure their trip goes smoothly.
Connectivity is key
Business travellers expect Wifi wherever they go - at their hotel, in restaurants, on board their flight etc - in order to be able to access work emails, conduct meetings by Skype or research projects on the move. The office is now fully mobile and WiFi is more crucial than ever.
Gone too are the days when a printed book or magazine would keep you entertained on your travels, not only are they all digital and available on your smartphone, tablet or laptop, but the Internet also means that you can access a wealth of information at your fingertips...
Most hotels and restaurants offer WiFi as standard and with airlines and rail companies following suit, business travellers now have the ability to be online and productive wherever they are in the world.
Mobile apps can be an essential business tool
There's pretty much an app for anything and everything. And for business travellers, accessing their itineraries or recording their expenses through an app can be the easiest solution. Not only can travellers and TMCs update itinerary information as and when, but companies can also access expenses data and make informed decisions about their travel programme spend.
CTM is constantly researching and developing the latest technology to meet with the needs and expectation of the next generation traveller. As our clients have started to use this technology it has helped with planning and managing travel arrangements on the move. These include:
- Consolidated itinerary - all itinerary details in one place, a single dash board view of all travel
- Real-time alerts and travel information, eg gate changes and flight status updates
- Ability to change and amend itineraries
- Ability to manage hotel payments and hotel check-in through virtual payment
CTM's innovative technology
At CTM, we work with our technology provider Vibe to ensure that we are working with and developing the most innovative tools for our clients. Over the past couple of years, we have seen a significant shift towards online booking, particularly amongst clients travelling within the UK and Europe. Our online booking tool enables users to access to flights, rail, accommodation and car hire information all within one window which can be adapted to meet with individual client needs.