Business trip before Christmas and New Year: trick of the trade. Opinion of Natalia Pleteneva, business trip manager of Yandex.Money

The Russian Association of Business Travel is glad to announce the new section of its ABT Newsletter — Expert opinion. Here corporate buyers of business travel services share their opinions on the main processes of the business travel industry with the readers and speak about their professional activities. Natalia Pleteneva, business trip manager of Yandex.Money is speaking about the ways to turn a business trip into a New Year fairytale and to avoid a nightmare before Christmas.

What do Christmas and New Year mean to you? Anticipation of a holiday and presents... For me as a travel manager, it is the high season of business trips. Everyone wants to bottom-line achievements of the year with their partners and suppliers, discuss reports with colleagues or to go to a corporate party to the company’s branch.

I would like to point out a number of key issues here that play an important role in planning business trips on the eve of New Year holidays.

First of all, they include early booking of hotels and tickets. Here we should bear in mind, that early booking does not always mean economy. But you’d better not hold off till the last moment and wait for the lowest prices. You must feel the moment in order not to be left without a hotel or tickets. The more experience you have in business travel, the easier it is to determine this very moment. Try to keep up with the latest events in your business area, news of the airlines and business associations.

Second, if we are speaking about trips abroad, you should remember about visa terms. As a rule, on New Year holidays documents are suspended and your passport will be in the embassy all this time. So, if an employee has a trip in his schedule in the nearest time, he may have problems.

And finally, the most important thing: flights are likely to be delayed on holidays. I recommend having two separate tickets for your roundtrip flight, in order for the back flight not to be cancelled in case of force majeure. Also, if we take into account, that your plans may change, it is advisable to book hotels that offer free cancellation. This may save you some unexpected expenses.

A trip before Christmas and New Year is an event that may bring profit to a company and enlarge the number of its contacts. So a travel manager’s task is to do everything possible to arrange a successful trip!