Categories: Special ReportTravel Management CompaniesManaging Travel Programs

The Global TMC Connection 2020

It’s a different world out there for international travel, so choosing the right travel management company is critical
Does anyone remember when international business travel was the exception rather than the norm? That may have the case in the early days of travel management companies. But for companies with a growing international presence, the need has become apparent for connecting with a TMC that will make global travel more transparent, more efficient and easier to manage.

From the TMC perspective, there has been no better time than now to define their target customer and then develop and communicate their differentiators, says Festive Road managing partner Paul Tilstone. “There’s far greater flexibility in their core offering than there ever has been because of technology developments and broader changes in business culture.”

For travel managers, this means expanded opportunities that go beyond the basic services of the past. “Buyers today have a good understanding of the market,” says Will Tate, a partner in the consulting firm GoldSpring. “In looking at a given TMC, the question isn't whether it can do all the basics, but how it can make business travel more efficient with better outcomes.”

Just what does that mean for international travel? There are many TMCs that will claim to be “global,” says John Keichline, Reed & Mackay CEO North America. In gauging the extent to which this is a reality, it’s important to understand the relationships between their regions. Are they all part of the same company, or are they partnerships or joint ventures? Do they share a technology platform? “While it’s unreasonable to expect a TMC to have offices in every part of the world, it’s important to understand the details of their global offering,” he says.

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