I booked all travel for the company so others could focus their time on client work. As travel frequency increased, I moved beyond just booking flights and hotels and began acting as Travel Management Company and 24 hour traveler support.
The company felt that using a Travel Management Company or online booking platform was not a good option so I was tasked with filling those roles. This included maintaining travel profiles, creating/distributing itineraries, and tracking cancelled airline tickets for future use without the help of automation.
- Created/maintained travel profile Excel sheet including credit card information and frequent traveler account numbers.
- Included cancelled airline tickets on each person’s profile to be reviewed for use on next booking
- Created electronic file system to access past travel info
- Maintained client-specific travel info (maps, directions, restaurant locations, client-specified hotels, hotel preferences from travelers)
- Maintained airport ratings from travelers as well as contingency plans (hotel list near airport) in case of cancelled flights
As technology increased (travelers now had smart phones), I was able to communicate with travelers directly so I began monitoring flight status, weather in the area, possible delays from situations in other areas, creating contingency plans when delays seemed likely and communicating all this to travel teams. I wanted travelers to know I “had their back” and if flights were delayed/cancelled they could relax while I booked hotels and rebooked flights for them, allowing them to focus on the upcoming client meeting.
Travelers were free to focus attention on client meeting/presentation rather than concern themselves with possible issues. When inevitable delays/cancellations happened, I quickly made alternate arrangements and all were grateful for the support.