The guide to corporate travel discounts


How to Benefit From Corporate Travel Discounts

Imagine cutting your business travel costs while keeping the experience sky-high for your team. Dreamy? Sure. Attainable? Definitely. But, if not well managed, business travel can eat up significant chunks of your budget—and the traveler experience with it. 
While many companies little and large are fully remote or hybrid, sending team members across borders for meetings or conferences is often still a necessity and something businesses are trying to score travel discounts on. In this guide, we’re sharing alternative ways you can get corporate travel discounts: saving your company time, money, and more. 

What are corporate travel rates?

Corporate rates are special rates offered to companies by travel service providers like airlines, hotels, and car rental services. These rates are either fixed or can be negotiated directly. 
These travel service provides place value on developing relationships with businesses. They understand that corporate travel is a big industry and that loyalty pays off in the long run.
Corporate travel discounts come in different forms:
  • Corporate hotel rates
  • Corporate airfares (think frequent flyer clubs)
  • Corporate car rental rates
  • Rideshare corporate accounts
By enrolling your company into corporate travel discount programs you benefit from:
  • Cost savings: needless to say, benefiting from corporate rates can save your company quite a bit of money. A good program will also give you the ability to monitor your spending.
  • Convenience: corporate travel discount programs can take a lot of the headaches out of organizing and planning your business travelers’ trips by offering you tools that make booking and monitoring easy.  
  • Control: Corporate travel programs offer more than just savings. These programs offer a layer of governance over your travel policy so you have more control and transparency over your spending.
  • Perks for your employees: Even when traveling for personal reasons, your employees can enjoy some of the same discounted rates and perks. 

7 Tips on getting corporate travel discounts for small businesses

In the past, the corporate travel discount club was an exclusive party for the big spenders—leaving small businesses peeking in from outside. Luckily, this is no longer the case, the options for small companies to enjoy corporate travel discounts are in full effect too. 
Here are seven ways in which all businesses can benefit from corporate travel discounts:

1. Choose a business travel management platform

You’ll ideally want a platform with a user-friendly interface, round-the-clock support, a mobile app, and click-and-play integrations with your tech stack. 
This means that teams can book flights, accommodation, trains and car rentals all on one platform. Plus, there’s no need for email back-and-forths chasing booking approvals or budget-breaking surprises for your finance teams. 
TravelPerk’s travel management software also gives you access to features like travel policies, individual and team invoices, integrations, and expense reporting.  And, for your international team, TravelPerk supports multiple languages including English, French, German, Spanish, and Italian.

Tired of overspending on business travel costs? Download our free ebook to learn how travel management tech saves your company money.

2. Take the time to negotiate rates

Not all service providers openly advertise their corporate travel discounts. Don’t be afraid to ask for preferential rates. If the initial response is a “no” or the rates quoted are higher than what you were expecting, negotiate! 
When it comes to hotel chains, you’ll likely need to speak to them individually to ensure you get the best deal possible. This is a more time-consuming option, as it can involve a lot of stakeholders and possibly multiple rounds of negotiation to reach an agreement that benefits both parties. 
A corporate travel management platform like TravelPerk combines the buying power of all its users to negotiate rates on everything from flights, hotels, rail, and cars. Meaning smaller businesses that wouldn’t have the purchase power of a larger organization can still benefit from corporate rates. Today, TravelPerk has over 25,000 negotiated rates across 150 countries so the hard work is done for you.
Want to score exclusive deals for your business travel? Check out our guide to scoring .

3. Use corporate credit cards

Also known as business travel credit cards, many banks and credit card providers offer products that favor corporate travel through a number of different perks. By registering for and using a business travel credit card, you’re likely to get: 
  • Cheaper rates when booking flights, hotels, and transport
  • A point-based loyalty scheme for specific services 
  • Access to VIP or business lounges at airports
  • The occasional free hotel stay
Keep in mind your credit card provider will likely charge you an annual fee for these cards but you will likely make that money back in savings pretty quickly if you’re flying frequently enough. 

4. Sign up for loyalty schemes and reward programs

There are many benefits associated with loyalty schemes including:
  • Discounted upgrades for air travel
  • More check-in luggage
  • Late hotel room check-outs and extra perks
  • Free airport delivery of your rental car
  • Added free days to your car rental
TravelPerk lets you seamlessly integrate your favorite hotel loyalty programs, including Accor Live, Limitless, Marriott Bonvoy, and Hilton Honors, directly into your profile. This way, you can make the most of the extra perks in your free time by racking up your loyalty points when you’re ‘on the clock.’  

5. Travel on weekdays

Traveling on weekdays can often lead to savings due to lower demand compared to weekends when leisure travel is high. Tuesdays and Wednesdays are the lowest-cost days for domestic flights with prices approximately 24% lower than Sunday’s peak.  On the other hand, airfares on Mondays are generally cheaper than on Sundays–so it’s a good idea to start or end your business trips just outside the weekend rush.
For those traveling abroad, Wednesdays are the most economical for flights with 12% savings compared to the weekends. While specific savings can vary, the trend of lower midweek prices is consistent.

6. Budgeting and expense tracking

Setting up a detailed travel policy is the first step toward effective . This policy is a blueprint that clearly outlines what can and can’t be expensed and booked. It helps prevent any out-of-policy spending before it occurs, avoiding time-consuming expense report disputes.
Need a hand with creating your travel policy? Take a look at our
Using modern automated expense management software like TravelPerk makes it easy to monitor how individual employees are spending and sticking to travel budgets in real-time—or not! Plus, its click-and-run let you quickly connect to expense management tools like Divvy and Expensify—something that will have your finance teams thanking you for.   

7. Look for VAT recovery opportunities

This involves reclaiming the Value-Added Tax (VAT) paid on your business-related expenses like , meals, conferences and transportation abroad. 
TravelPerk’s comes with an easy-to-use reporting tool and consolidated invoices making it easier for your company to claim your VAT refunds on flights, hotels, cars and train rides. This helps you save up to 25% on business travel expenses.
TravelPerk’s hands-on lets you quickly see how much you could reclaim on your business travel based on your total spend for trips across countries like France, Spain, Germany, and the United Kingdom.

Cut travel costs by landing some savvy corporate travel discounts

When you make the most of corporate travel discounts, you get lower prices on flights and hotels, easy booking options, and better control over spending. And, with an all-in-one booking platform like TravelPerk you can make the most of these benefits, add any necessary travel policies or restrictions, and get a bird’s-eye-view of your total travel spend in a click. 
Let TravelPerk take the hassle of handling travel bookings and more, so you can optimize your travel expenses and keep those business trips rolling. .
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