Ground is an increasingly important part of the managed travel mix. Our newly released Ground Monitor, powered by our Global Business Consulting (GBC) team, explores how the ground category is expanding to meet the needs of today’s travel programs, including the role of ground technologies like rail, electronic vehicles (EVs), and mobility platforms, in driving decarbonization and mobilizing the modern workforce.

Given the importance of ground transportation, GBC’s team of ground specialists offer tips to help corporate travel buyers and managers build a ground program that delivers for the travel program – and wider business objectives.

  1. Build strong relationships with car rental providers
    As the Ground Monitor indicates, supply will continue to lag demand through 2023. Ground program owners are most likely to find the cars they need, at the best available prices, by partnering with a single car rental provider and consolidating spend and bookings through it. Car rental companies will be less likely to offer the best deals when they are relegated to the status of a secondary or back-up supplier.
  2. Understand your organization’s needs
    Effective planning and negotiations begin with knowledge. To deliver a strong program aligned with the organization’s priorities, ground program owners need to keep up to date with business objectives. When they have a good understanding of internal demand, ground program owners can better consolidate suppliers and harmonize their procurement processes.
  3. Get to know your travelers
    The ground category is expanding all the time as new transportation options emerge, enabled by technology. Many of these options can help organizations achieve their wider goals around sustainability and mobilizing hybrid workforces. In this dynamic environment, it can be useful to segment the driver population by likelihood to accept new mobility offers, such as car sharing, bike rentals, mobility budget, or night trains. With fewer people routinely coming to the office, it’s also important to know where employees are based to help decide where mobility services need to be located.
  4. Help drivers get comfortable with electric vehicles (EVs)
    Car rental providers are frustrated to see their EVs sitting unrented at their locations. They will work with ground program owners to support their EV adoption efforts. GBC has seen providers offer driver familiarization and free trials on prestige EV models. Corporates who work with providers to help them rent out their EVs could be rewarded with better rates. Your TMC can help you have an effective negotiation with your rental company.
  5. Add micromobility options – but understand it could get complex
    Micromobility options, such as e-scooters and rental bikes, can give travelers some useful alternatives for completing the last-mile stages of their journeys. However, it can be complex to procure these services; they will need to be sourced and agreed locally. Ground program owners may need to involve multiple internal stakeholders, which can include corporate fleet, HR, and procurement, to onboard micromobility suppliers. Obtaining adequate insurance could also be an issue.

To learn more about ground transportation – the trends and pricing predictions that can impact your travel program, download the Ground Monitor today.