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How to drive savings on ground transport

Posted on May 6, 2013 by FCm Travel Solutions

When it comes to ground transport, there are plenty of options to get you from A to B. But for cost conscious corporates looking to optimise their travel spend, it’s not simply a case of first cab off the rank will do. Like every other aspect of corporate travel, ground transport must be managed strategically to contain costs.

A well thought-out ground transport program should include the right balance of cost vs comfort and practicality. 
Generally speaking, the ground transport component of a company’s travel program can account for anywhere between 3 per cent and 12 per cent of total travel spend. According to some, however, these figures are slowly starting to swell as the post-Global Financial Crisis travel revival gains momentum and corporates continue to increase their spend across all aspects of business travel. Rising fuel costs, parking fees, taxi and rail fares are also adding to the cost burden of ground travel. 
To really drive savings on your ground transport, work with your travel or account manager to map out what your requirements are and what kind of ground transport program is best suited to your organisation. Businesses should look at using a combination of FCm’s corporate preferred rates and Best Rate of the Day as this helps to keep rates competitive for clients no matter which way the market fluctuates. Or if you have a high volume of business to offer, take your car hire program to tender.
Another way to drive real savings is to use preferred suppliers. If you haven’t been to tender for a few years, this is one way you can consolidate your car hire program to make sure you’re receiving competitive rates from suppliers. 
There are many other ways you can create cost efficiencies for your organisation’s ground transport costs. Consider reducing the size of your hire car from premium or luxury to economy, compact or intermediate. Depending on the supplier, the difference between the cost of a full size car and a compact car can save your business up to 15 per cent of your total spend on ground transport. 

Other considerations you can make include:

  • Car hire vs taxis: If travelling to two or more destinations that are a fair distance apart or in regional locations, consider car hire rather than catching taxis. Alternatively, ask your travel manager to weigh up the cost of hiring a car and parking a vehicle while travelling interstate, compared to catching a taxi.
  • Insurance: Before collecting hire cars, travellers should check their company travel policy for insurance excesses, which are usually paid at the counter, as these may already be included in the negotiated rate or covered by alternative insurance policies.
  • Transfers: When booking international airfares, check whether the airline has free door-to-door transfers included in the fare. Alternatively check if a hotel offers airport pick-up.


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