Traveling for business is an important part of many companies’ growth. There are about 445 million business trips every year, with business travelers spending at least $251 billion annually. Despite their ubiquity, business travel can be challenging. Planning for one is especially tricky for those who have many other responsibilities. Yet having a plan in place is essential to any trip’s success. Planning a business trip prevents costly mistakes for the company and helps people to reach the trip’s goals efficiently.
If you have many other tasks, consider outsourcing business travel planning to an assistant. Planning an out-of-town trip can be daunting, but proper planning and preparation will result in a smooth and successful experience. Here are things you can delegate to an assistant.
Business Travel Planning: Researching the Destination
One of the first things your assistant can do is pre-planning research. You can ask them to find the best airfare and accommodation options for you or your team. They can also research the area/region and potential activities or events.
Additionally, the assistant can research any necessary transportation options, such as rental cars or public transportation, and make reservations as needed. The assistant can also look up visa or passport requirements for the destination country.
You could also ask your assistant to research and note any cultural customs or business etiquette that envoys should follow while on the trip. Overall, the assistant’s role is to ensure that things happen as smoothly as possible.
Creating a Detailed Itinerary when Business Travel Planning
Business travel planning tasks you could delegate to an assistant include researching and booking local transportation, such as trains, ride-sharing platforms, and rental cars.
The assistant can also plan out the schedule for the trip, including scheduling meetings and making reservations for restaurants, events, and activities. Additionally, the assistant can create or save detailed maps or directions to help navigate the destination.
They can also help coordinate logistics, such as arranging any necessary equipment or materials needed in meetings. Furthermore, they can help create and distribute the itinerary to all attendees and keep track of any changes or updates. Overall, the assistant’s role is to help plan and execute a detailed and efficient itinerary for the trip.
Planning for a Trip: Compiling Relevant Information
You could ask an assistant to compile all the contact information for the people your boss will be meeting, such as phone numbers and email addresses. Doing this will ensure that your boss has all the information they need to stay connected and make the most of their time on the trip.
Other briefing tasks to offload to an assistant include:
- Researching the company or individuals that you will meet during the trip
- Gathering relevant background information and compiling it into a report
- Preparing a summary of key points to be discussed during meetings
- Creating a list of talking points and questions
Additionally, the assistant can prepare any necessary materials for presentations or meetings, such as handouts or visual aids.
Ironing Out the Logistics in Your Business Travel Plan
Booking flights should be one of the first steps in business travel planning. Remember to book flights early to get the best deals and ensure availability. It would help if you also looked for flights with the most convenient departure and arrival times and routes to match your boss’s itinerary.
Booking a hotel is another crucial step in making travel arrangements. Make sure the hotel is located in a convenient area, near the meeting places, and with amenities that suit your boss’s needs. Booking ahead of time will ensure you have a range of options and help you get better deals.
Rental cars can also be reserved in advance. This way, it will be ready for your boss to use once they arrive at their destination. Booking a vehicle will allow your boss flexibility and independence while on the trip.
Remember that making travel arrangements can help you save money and ensure availability. Keeping a copy of all reservations and confirmations is also a good idea. You should also check for any travel restrictions or requirements due to Covid-19 or other factors that may affect the travel.
Acting as a Liaison
While you’re a business trip, an assistant can handle various tasks to ensure business operations continue smoothly. These business travel planning tasks include responding to emails and phone calls, scheduling and coordinating meetings, managing and updating calendars, handling travel arrangements for other employees, and monitoring project progress.
Additionally, the assistant can act as a liaison between the traveling employee and the rest of the company, relaying information and updates as needed. They can also help prepare and distribute reports and presentations and take on any other tasks as delegated. It is also helpful if they can follow up on any pending tasks to ensure their timely completion. The assistant’s role is to keep the business running smoothly in your absence.
Handling Post-Trip Administrative Tasks
After a business trip, several tasks need to be completed before returning to your regular work routine. One of the most critical tasks is the preparation and submission of an expense report. This process includes collecting and organizing receipts, filling out necessary forms, and submitting them for reimbursement.
Following up on outstanding tasks or action items from meetings during the trip is also necessary. Have your assistant coordinate and schedule important follow-up meetings or calls.
Another critical business travel planning task is canceling any itineraries and flight confirmations you no longer need. It is also a good idea to contact the hotel where you stayed to ensure you have no outstanding charges or issues that need addressing. Additionally, you may need to restock any office supplies used during the trip, such as business cards or brochures.
For those in sales, following up on leads and sales generated during the trip is crucial to maintaining the momentum of the business. It is also vital to update contact information and add new contacts to the company’s CRM.
Finally, it is a good idea to prepare a debrief report or presentation for the team or management, outlining the trip’s outcomes and any lessons learned. The trip’s relevant documents and materials should also be archived for future reference. An assistant can help with all these tasks, guarantee everything related to the trip is in order, and allow the business traveler to focus on other significant tasks.
In conclusion, planning a business trip can be challenging. However, with the help of an organized and experienced virtual assistant, planning can be a successful and smooth experience.
Delegating travel planning to a Wing Assistant can save time and reduce stress, allowing you to focus on your core business tasks. A Wing Assistant can handle all the details, from booking hotels and flights to planning itineraries and managing expenses, ensuring a seamless and efficient business trip. Get in touch now to learn more!
Aya is Wing Assistant’s blog manager. When she’s not wrangling content briefs, editing article drafts and handling on-page SEO, she is crafting messages for Wing’s other communication materials. Aya writes about SaaS startups, marketing for startups, search engine optimization, and pop culture.