Elements of a Great Executive Travel Itinerary
Traveling for business has many aspects to consider for a trip to be successful, and if one detail is forgotten and unplanned, the trip can become incredibly stressful or disastrous. Between juggling deadlines and appointments, travel reservations and pertinent information for business meetings and presentations, business executives are already in overload. If you are responsible for managing an executive’s travel itinerary, establishing the priorities and timeline for the duration of the trip’s duration is fundamental. Here are a few elements to consider for every executive travel itinerary to ensure a business trip is as stress and frustration free as possible:
Consider the Executive’s Lifestyle and Preferences
A good itinerary must be built and tailored for each executive’s habits and preferences. You will have to consider their travel routines, even if they seem weird or quirky to you. For example, some people prefer to check-in their luggage instead of using a carry-on, and you might feel this is risky because of the possibility of the airline misplacing baggage. Put your personal feelings aside and allot time on the itinerary for baggage claim before directing them to the location of the car service. Know the executive’s preferred airlines and hotels. You might book them on an airline or in a hotel where they have had prior issues if you don’t. Then you will have to go back and cancel reservations and book reservations with their favorite vendors. These are just a couple things you should know before creating the itinerary. Save yourself time and embarrassment by researching the executive and past travel arrangements.
Examine the Timeline
The order of events taking place on the business trip should be the main focus when planning an executive’s itinerary, since this determines how he or she must function. It is necessary to account for and notate anything scheduled, no matter how short or irrelevant the appointment may seem. Prime examples are client dinners and lunches. Remember to allow extended time for business meetings or presentations that run longer than expected. The last thing an executive needs is to feel rushed and forgetting a crucial matter to be discussed.
Create a Simple but Detailed Guide
Small print, bold fonts and intricate explanations and descriptions are not needed on executive itineraries. Business travelers are busy and require relevant information that is easy to read and easy on the eyes. Anything too complicated will not be beneficial, but anything too simple creates the risk of sacrificing important details. Use headings for the most important information, such as hotel, ground transportation and flight arrangements. Strategically use bullet points and lists for easy reference and understanding. Make sure the most vital facts and information are easy to find and see.
Prepare your executive for worst case scenarios by having emergency and after-hours phone numbers for all travel vendors, such as the car service or hotel. Room for flexibility is also essential for the executive in case of delayed flights, rush hour traffic or meetings that run longer than expected. Attention to detail is what separates a poor itinerary from a great one, so as long as you plan carefully, a great executive travel itinerary will lay down the foundation for a smooth and successful business trip.
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