Differences Between Account Managers and Corporate Travel Planners


Corporate Travel - Feb 25, 2020

Differences Between Account Managers and Corporate Travel Planners

Reaching out for experienced travel guidance in an ever-evolving travel industry is a smart move right now. Regardless of your reason for travel (business or personal) you may need extra help navigating such a changing landscape. Both corporate travel planners and account managers can help you gain insight, professional tips and insider information. Beyond this, their roles are actually quite different. 

Use this quick guide to help you discern when you should use the different services of a business travel planner vs. a corporate travel account manager. Here are three differences you need to know moving forward.

Difference #1: Scope of Work

A corporate travel planner is the go-to individual responsible for setting up, booking, and providing ongoing support for your business travel endeavors. Planners are typically your point of contact throughout the duration of the trip to answer any questions and concerns which may unfold. 

On the other hand, an account manager will be available before and in-between business trips to review, enhance, and optimize your company’s travel policy to fit in line with the practices of your employees. The account manager also plays a vital role in negotiating contracts with desired airline, rental car, and hotel brands to reduce overall expenses on your travel.

Difference #2: Strategy Collaboration

Account managers and corporate travel planners offer different levels of expertise that allow them to work together to create the best results for your business trips. Typically, account managers are knowledgeable about the functionality of applications such as online booking tools or employee monitoring. They can not only set up your company accounts before takeoff, but they remain up to date with industry trends in order to deliver the most value for your travel systems, while helping keep everything organized. 

What corporate travel planners bring to the table is on-the-ground experience. Planners are well-traveled, well-studied individuals who are there to listen to every detail you envision for your trips. If you aren’t looking for guided tours, resorts or simple recreation, a business travel planner is your go-to for special requests, dietary needs or local connections. Working together, planners and account managers can ensure the highest level of success and safety for your experience.

Difference #3: Different Insights

While a corporate travel planner has overseen dozens if not hundreds of international business trips, account managers are constantly connected to valuable data. Managers have the ability to highlight certain trends of travel to suggest whether or not your plans are advantageous or detrimental. By revisiting your policies on a consistent basis, your account manager can supply the data on your past trips to allow your planner to create the best schedule, book the most affordable airfare, and connect you with rental car companies you can trust.

At Forest Travel, our dedicated account managers and planners work in tandem to support your business trip requirements. Looking for more guidance on planning a customized trip for business or personal leisure? Contact Forest Travel for meticulous travel planning and on-call agents to make your trip happen the way you want it to.

About the Author

Carmen Stinson

Director, Global Corporate Travel Sales & Operations

Carmen is a seasoned hospitality professional with over 19 years of management, from the hotel industry to the corporate travel arena. She is dedicated to high-level customer relations, while an expert in financial management, and operations. Carmen passion for traveling matches her professional experience.

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