The pandemic brought not only technological innovation but also a reshuffling of priorities, putting health and safety front and center. Corporate travel is gradually returning, but many travel programs are still adapting to new safety protocols. Corporate travel solutions should complement rather than compete with each other in a way that benefits passengers, ensuring the highest standard of health and safety for every journey.
Health and Safety
Covid-19 has been a powerful reminder of the importance of duty of care. Protecting employees is now top of mind and can only be achieved through safety measures put in place before, during and after a trip. These range from vehicle cleanings and sanitization between rides to vaccine mandates and face coverings for drivers.
Many new corporate travel contracts will list measures like these specifically, ensuring maximum business travel safety and the autonomy to customize policies in a constantly changing environment. It’s a level of control larger transportation network companies have found challenging to implement and oversee.
Early on, app-hail companies were seen as the cheapest and fastest way to get a ride. However, according to Rakuten Intelligence, the cost of a ride from one of the major app-hail companies nearly doubled between January 2018 and July 2021. Just as business travelers prepare to travel again, they have been faced with frustratingly long wait times and surge pricing. The return of requests for rides and driver shortages create the perfect storm of high demand and low supply that makes app-hailing every ride less appealing, especially for corporate travel.
Business Travel and Technology
Business travel at its core is about human interaction and in-person experiences, but corporations and providers alike must integrate health and safety protocols into their travel plans. Businesses should consider all possible avenues to keep their employees safe. Here are a few ways that technology is aiding in this mission.
- Contactless payments and self-service airport and hotel check-ins. These solutions offer travelers greater convenience and flexibility throughout the business journey while reducing touchpointsand potential health risks.
- Automation throughout the travel booking process. For businesses, real-time data can provide unparalleled insight to make better decisions based on demand, price and activity. Along with new technologies, travel services and solutions will be increasingly tailored to personal needs based on previous travel behavior and preferences.
- Corporate mobility solutions. These can include platforms to allocate corporate travel budgets, set the price range and choose mobility services. When selecting corporate travel solutions, corporations must consider how they will interact with the goal of protecting the health and safety of employees and guests.
It’s clear that recovery and resilience are about adapting and adjusting even during periods of uncertainty. At this pivotal moment for corporate travel, it’s time to make today’s reshuffled priorities more permanent, to continually focus on the health and safety of your workforce and clients.