High-speed rail (HSR) is expected to play a larger role in business travel programs—and Advito consultancy is preparing for the expansion with a new rail practice. The practice will help travel programs devise the right mix of air and rail to optimize spend, reduce carbon emissions, and increase traveler productivity and satisfaction. The new offering may prove pivotal for travel managers as they prepare to return to travel this year.
The rail ramp-up
Rail is growing for two reasons. First, sustainability is high on everyone’s agenda, and rail is generally considered the “greenest” way to travel. Second, global high-speed rail networks are dramatically growing. Taking a multimodal approach, Advito will combine their business travel and sustainability consulting expertise to create best-in-class rail programs for corporate travel clients. Depending on client goals, the consulting offering could include an assessment of the client’s current program to understand gaps and discover improvement opportunities, a sourcing engagement to secure ideal contract terms and rates, and Dynamic Performance Management for ongoing program management and optimization.
For travelers and travel managers, the multi-modal approach translates simply to:
- Attractive fares and convenience: In general, HSR pricing is competitive. Adopting a multimodal approach increases competition in a travel program – particularly for short-haul domestic and regional trips.
- Sustainability: The practice will help identify routes where travelers can switch to rail to reduce carbon emissions.
- Better on-board experiences: Travelers benefit from easier social distancing, freedom to walk around, fresh air from windows, and quiet cabins with fewer disruptions. Rail travel also brings another big benefit to travelers – increased productivity time. On a short-haul trip (under 1,000 km), productivity time represents two-thirds of the total trip duration (vs. one-third with a plane and one-fifth with a car).
“We see a real opportunity for our clients to embrace this multimodal approach and integrate more rail content into their programs to increase their contract coverage and find real savings. And as more and more of our clients are adopting aggressive sustainability goals into their travel recovery strategies, this new offering will put us in a unique position to help corporates reduce their environmental footprint and increase their traveler satisfaction. We’re excited to bring this new capability to our clients to kick off 2021,” said Lesley O’Bryan, Senior Vice President at Advito.
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