A new survey of nearly 500 North American and European business travelers has found that nearly four out of five (79 percent) said their company’s travel policy has the greatest impact on their decisions when booking travel for work. Policy comes ahead of convenience (71 percent) and cost (70 percent), according to the study from the GBTA Foundation in partnership with HRS entitled Travel Policy Communication: Understanding Disconnects and Increasing Compliance.

The report reveals that e-mail is both the most often means of communicating travel policy (49 percent) and most desired by travelers (56 percent). The survey also found that flexible change and cancellation policies were important for over half the respondents (58 percent and 56 percent respectively) and one-half (52 percent) say automated expense reporting and membership in a loyalty or rewards program (50 percent) were significant factors as well.

“Communicating the travel policy through the right channels at the right time and listening to your travelers’ feedback is key,” said Tobias Ragge, CEO of HRS. “A travel program which meets the needs of the travelers is the foundation, but corporates need to take the whole end-to-end process into account to provide additional value to their travelers.”