Are you the event planner for your department or your entire organization? Finding a date, selecting a venue and organizing activities can be a serious challenge, especially on a budget. With companies tightening their belts as we weather economic uncertainties, less money is available for team meetings. But with colleagues spending more and more time working outside the office, it’s never been more important to bring everyone together.
While these little water cooler chats might seem frivolous, in-person interaction is vital for a variety of reasons. From building team bonds to acknowledging the hard work of colleagues, investing in bringing teams together, face-to-face, can bring significant benefits in terms of employee engagement and retention. . But what tips and tricks can you use to optimize your budget? At TravelPerk, we’ve rounded up our top 8 money-saving hacks for business travel planners to cut expenses and streamline event management for their next team meeting. Let’s dive!
Your dates can make the difference
Something as simple as the time of year you host your next event can have a huge impact on your budget. First-time remote companies, in particular, may need to book a lot of travel to bring their teams together, and traveling outside peak periods could significantly reduce costs. Avoiding the summer months could drastically change how much you need to spend on airfare and hotel reservations.
While June, July and August are the most popular months for vacationers, the winter holidays can also see prices skyrocket and availability drop. Weekdays in April, May, September and October are generally good for business travel, with employees returning to the office from vacation and more economical accommodation and transport options available for group bookings.
Focus on flexibility
If the past few years have taught us anything, having a generous cancellation policy is crucial! Business travel has always been full of the unexpected. Whether it’s a client’s meeting that gets postponed or the employee that falls ill before their trip, travel managers have long known the inconvenience that can come from a last-minute cancellation attempt. or recovering the cost of their itineraries from insurance.
Before booking a flight or transportation, check if your fares are non-refundable or if there is a more flexible option. Accommodation cancellation policies can also vary wildly, so check with your provider if a more generous policy is possible with a non-refundable deposit.
Services like TravelPerk’s travel management solution FlexiPerk allow travelers to cancel travel plans up to two hours before departure with no questions asked and a minimum 80% refund guaranteed. Travelers can cancel itineraries directly on the TravelPerk platform or contact a real customer support human in just 15 seconds, 24/7, 365 days a year.
FlexiPerk gives you the most flexible business travel available. You pay a small fee on top of your booking and if your plans change you can cancel up to two hours before and get at least 80% of your trip refunded. No questions asked.
Check your site
Choosing a suitable event venue comes down to a few key factors.
- How many people do you meet?
- What would be a convenient location that would reduce the number of trips for most participants?
- What is the purpose of this event? What types of meeting spaces might you need?
As we’ll soon see, if you want to bring your employees together to create simple team bonds, staying local with some activities at headquarters could be a great money-saving option. However, if you are hosting a larger event, you may need more extensive arrangements.
A hotel might be a better backdrop if you need conference space and employee housing. Many major brands have loyalty programs that offer members additional points and benefits for renting their event spaces. If you’re a small team, Airbnb offers fantastic, budget-friendly options with its range of inspiring venues designed for corporate meetings.
Get creative with activities
Team building sessions don’t have to be expensive! The goal of the game is to make employees feel appreciated and speak as a team. So even if you feel the pressure to push yourself, the simplest ideas can sometimes be the most effective.
There are many low-cost team building activities, including several that you can organize at the office to keep expenses down. Whether it’s an old-fashioned sports day or a team dinner buffet, with a little creativity and help, you can ensure everyone has a great time. without breaking the bank, and that brings us well to…
Get everyone involved
As the old saying goes, “no one is an island”, and you don’t have to face everything alone! For a variety of reasons, asking co-workers to help organize can be beneficial. In addition to lightening the load on your to-do list, delegating tasks can give you new ideas and another pair of eyes to spot potential pitfalls. Plus, asking co-workers to take care of the decorations or create a killer playlist will get people talking and build buzz around your event!
Ignore or Reduce Loot
While we all love good giveaways, it can be easy to go overboard and waste valuable event budgets on items your teams might only use once or twice. If company goodies are a non-negotiable part of your team event, there are always ways to save. While making your branded giveaway event specific might seem like a fancy treat, it just adds unnecessary cost.
Instead, keep your items practical and simple so you can buy in bulk and reuse them for other purposes. For example, stylish notebooks with your company name can be given to new hires during their onboarding process or handed out at exhibitions or conferences.
Reap other forms of return on investment
Saving money isn’t just about cutting your costs. Think outside the box and you can further optimize the ROI of your team event. These days, content is king. Designating a team member to capture the best moments can be useful content for your organization’s social media and recruiting efforts.
To stand out, go the extra mile and record short employee interviews. Ask them to briefly describe the event and how they feel about working for your company. There will never be a better opportunity to capture their excitement on film and show potential contestants what special group they could join!
Do you want to organize a memorable corporate event but are concerned about the smooth running of it all? Download our e-book now to make sure you have checked all the boxes.
Spending money on the services of a corporate travel agency may seem counter-intuitive, but it can be the most effective way to cut costs and improve the travel experience for your corporate events. business. With extensive inventory, TMCs have access to the best contracts in the industry and greater power to negotiate group discounts. In addition to offering special rates, using travel services can save employees hours by allowing them to arrange flights, accommodation, and transportation in one easy-to-use platform.
In addition to providing a streamlined process for booking team travel, solutions like TravelPerk now offer dedicated event planning tools. Simplifying the organization of your travel schedule, their platform can help coordinators book travel for multiple team members for an event, track registrations, and distribute all necessary details with just a few clicks. Plus, with the easy-to-use tagging feature, travel managers can track all costs related to a single event in real time in one collated report.
Unfortunately, we’ve all learned the hard way that plans can change! But with a travel management solution, you won’t have to call or email your business travelers to update them. Through a simple mobile app, employees receive real-time notifications for any route changes or safety issues for their trip. In addition to these valuable tools, TravelPerk users can save up to 25% on their travel expenses with the easy-to-use VAT solution.
Want to see how using TravelPerk’s suite of tools can transform event planning and business travel for your organization? Contact our teams and speak to our teams for a demo today.
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