Who takes care of travellers?
Bigger and more international
The seemingly diverse range of services corporate travellers have to choose from are often offered by the same organizations. Major players on the global market are increasingly taking over their medium-sized industry peers in order to increase their international presence. BTN reported no fewer than 51 major acquisitions in 2019. For most organizations, scaling up is a logical and sometimes necessary step that goes hand in hand with continuous innovation and digitization. It also requires a hefty investment. But organizations have to jump on board if they want to stay afloat.
In the travel sector, the importance of an online presence is understood, embraced and implemented on a large scale. Major industry players integrate a range of innovations into their business operations, from user-friendly online booking tools for travellers to big data and artificial intelligence. The scale and scope of these technological developments has prompted the standardization of many services. This can be advantageous in that it leads to more diverse and more affordable travel options and new online applications that can help bind customers to companies. It can also enable the further integration of online and offline services, for instance through apps.
Digitization and upscaling can also have disadvantages. The illusion of diversity is one example. A takeover doesn't always mean the brand name disappears, which can make it hard for travellers to figure out who's running the show behind the scenes. In addition, the standardization of services doesn't always mean higher-quality services. This is where travel management companies can play an important and distinct role.
The role of travel management companies
Trends and developments are changing the role played by travel management companies (TMCs). For instance, digitalization means travellers are increasingly able to book simple trips without any help. That's why TMCs often provide their own online booking tools, offering convenience to travellers and the benefits of a TMC’s service, such as being contactable 24/7. But TMCs are also becoming increasingly important players in organizing complex trips, with the key factors being customization, personal attention and customer focus. After all, TMCs know their travellers like no other and can offer a solution that suits the client. Personal attention like this is what makes TMCs indispensable.
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Result and Conversation Manager