Business travelers deserve a simple, smart, and efficient travel experience to set them up for success in their business pursuits. In today’s world, technology is what drives businesses and people forward. In an effort to continue to bring our customers superior service powered by technology, American Express Global Business Travel (GBT) recently released two new pre-trip products that arm travelers and travel managers with the best technology to meet their goals, without any disruptions.

Business travel success begins even before a trip starts, aided by products that help ensure that traveler security is maintained, costs are minimized, and compliance is promoted. As our world faces more and more uncertainty, greater control is key to ensuring the success of corporate travel programs, with technology providing added assurance.


The approval process is a consistent pain point of the pre-trip planning process, particularly for today’s modern business travelers who look for an efficient experience. To alleviate this pain point and help automate the approval process, American Express GBT developed EXPERT APPROVAL. EXPERT APPROVAL is a highly scalable cloud-based solution featuring proprietary technologies with support for both online and offline bookings. EXPERT APPROVAL offers a simplified process for travelers and travel approvers regardless of device or location, eliminating excessive emails and paper approval forms that can make the process time-consuming and cumbersome.

A necessary step to the travel process, travel approvals are meant to uphold policy compliance and help reduce the risk of excessive travel. EXPERT APPROVAL allows travel managers to better manage demand, influence travel, and contain costs. Also, travelers are better organized via their own personal page featuring a dashboard, trip library, activity feed, and more. With its dynamic and collaborative environment, approval times are reduced and out-of-policy or budget-exceeding travel are re-evaluated. Integration with iJET™ International risk management also provides travelers access to up-to-date information for any associated travel risks.

EXPERT APPROVAL is currently available in the U.S., UK (GetThere™) and Australia (Serko™).

For more information on EXPERT APPROVAL, click here.


After a trip is approved, travel managers and travelers alike shift their attention to the payment process. This is often another pain point where technology and service can help out. VIRTUAL PAYMENT EXPERT is a virtual payment solution that helps with the expense reporting process. Through the tool, travelers are issued a single-usage virtual payment credit card number to book travel expenses (hotel booking only; air bookings coming in late 2017). This is ideal for companies who send noncorporate card holders, such as freelancers or consultants, on business trips regularly. Travel managers gain insights and control over noncorporate cardholder spend, regardless of if a traveler is an employee or a contractor.

Seeking a way to improve this part of their travel program, Microsoft™, an American Express GBT customer, wanted to simplify their multiple payment processes while expanding reporting and monitoring capabilities to support compliance. To resolve this need, American Express GBT and Microsoft worked together with Conferma™ to create VIRTUAL PAYMENT EXPERT to drive payment efficiencies in a complex and robust program that at times used multiple billing processes. Now a product available for all American Express GBT customers, VIRTUAL PAYMENT EXPERT enables companies like Microsoft to issue travelers virtual card numbers (VCN) at the point of sale to make travel easier with increased spend control and security.

By leveraging this product, Microsoft gained the upper hand to improve their compliance, time efficiency, and program visibility. When speaking about using the product, Eric Bailey, Microsoft’s global travel and events manager, said, “Once again, technology has helped us reduce company and traveler risk while providing a better experience for travelers and travel agents.”

That’s a philosophy we can get behind! VIRTUAL PAYMENT EXPERT is currently available for all American Express GBT customers in the U.S., UK and Australia.

For more information on VIRTUAL PAYMENT EXPERT (VPE), click here.

To learn more about how American Express GBT’s client Microsoft is using VPE, click here.