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Make managing holiday leave as easy as having one - 
 Holiday leave can cause huge stress in an office - from planning leave to avoiding clashes, to finding the right type of cover when key employees are away from the office. Discover how to take the pain out of the entire process.
Travel problems?

There can be many problems arranging travel for someone else. Everyone has different tastes, preferences and quirks, and you have to get to know them all. So what do you do? Try starting with these top ten tips:

  • You - or travel organisers?
    The alternative to DIY is to get the experts to work for you - travel agents and organisers exist to do the job in half the time because it's their area of expertise.
  • Be organised
    As always, organisation is the key. It's a skill you use every day at the office and it applies even more when it comes to something as complex as overseas travel. Checklist templates are the answer - some for you the organiser to keep track of your information [Travel Request Form, Travel Booking Preferences] and some for the traveller.
  • Know your client
    Overseas travel is an area of personalised preference, and you have to think beyond the schedule to the person. Checklists are again the answer. A questionnaire-like checklist can help establish the traveller's preferences in general and needs for each particular trip Travel Request Form

    This information should be added to a database of key points as you get to know your 'client' inside out Travel Booking Preferences
  • Know your company policy
    If overseas travel is frequent, your organisation should have a policy, and you should know the ins and outs including who can authorise what; maximum expenditures allowed on various components; preferred airlines, hotel chains, class of travel; any loyalty schemes to use; any preferred travel agents or organisers.
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  • Know your supplier
    The other database of information you'll be building up is your knowledge of the range of resources at your fingertips - what websites, travel organisers, airlines, hotels, car hire etc.
  • Look for the small print
    If you are going through the organising yourself, one of the main things to master is the small print. Always compare what's on offer, and be aware that what looks like a cut-price bargain may not be.
  • Get it all on paper
    Overseas travel is one area where you need to have things in black and white in front of you. So make sure you immediately print off documentation if you are doing things online, and that you receive everything that is promised in the post.
  • Think added value
    Once you've got the nuts and bolts in place, think if there are any aspects you can add to the 'package' to make things especially memorable. Are there any extras that you can arrange as surprises on the flight or at the hotel - leisure opportunities like tickets for a show, gym membership, a guide to local shops, a bus or taxi tour of the city?

Think up to the minute
Keep an eye on all the innovations that can make the process easier. Not only are people buying their air e-tickets on line, they're saving time by checking in on line, to make the airport experience as painless as possible.

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