Booking Tools Evolve

As the pandemic subsides, now is the time to explore what’s out there and take control of the booking experience
Ideally, booking tools for corporate travelers should offer equal advantages both for travelers and the companies footing the bill. Certainly, they provide important opportunities for the travel program to impose policy limitations while also offering robust traveler information.

Yet while virtually everyone concerned would agree that a more consumer-like booking experience is desirable, that's easier said than done. Invariably, meeting the needs of businesses adds more restrictions than travelers would prefer. While progress in closing this gap has been ongoing, recent events – particularly responses to COVID-19 – may be accelerating change. At least temporarily, the pandemic has had a substantial impact on booking policies.

In a recent GBTA survey supported by Deem, more than 86 percent of responding travel managers reported that stricter pre-trip approval processes have been implemented. Nearly half also reported adopting a more restrictive requirement to book through an OBT/TMC. Of these, a full three-fourths (75 percent) said they anticipate that this change will become permanent.

If nothing else, such moves indicate that companies have taken a closer look at booking-related policies during the pandemic. Such analysis, combined with developments previously under way, may bode well for meaningful refinement of booking practices.

Categories: Special ReportDistribution and Booking Tools

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