Does your corporate travel wellbeing programme consider the unique needs of the business traveller?

The frequent business traveller works in a different working environment to that of non-travelling employees. Supporting their health and wellbeing is a crucial part of a company’s duty of care in mitigating against potential risks.

This support is becoming increasingly important as business travel is on the increase. According to Business Travel News Europe anxiety levels have risen alongside the return to travel.

There are many ways a travel management company can look at the unique demands and expectations placed on today’s business travellers, recommending the best employee assistance and how to integrate it into your travel policy.

why is wellbeing in travel important?

When you consider what the average wellbeing programme costs per employee per year, it’s usually less than a long-haul trip. And it’s an essential investment in a current labour market that’s being affected by skilled staff shortages across several industries; organisations beset by employee burnout; record numbers of employees leaving their jobs; the impact of Brexit; and the evolution of working practices.

HOW is a business traveller’s work environment unique?

If you look at corporate wellbeing solutions, they generally focus on employees based at a physical office or their remote working locations – considering desk space, office temperature, chairs with the correct support, time recommended away from the desk etc.

For the business traveller, they’re dealing with dehydration and limited physical activity when at a cruising altitude of 30,000 feet. Then come the time-zone changes and adjusting to different sleep environments.

Factor in unhealthier food options when eating on the move, plus managing the stress that comes with delays or cancellations, and you’ve got a recipe that defies the definition of wellbeing. That’s before you’ve even considered the impact jet lag can have on productivity.

7 tips to manage business traveller wellbeing

Creating a wellbeing programme for business travellers should be tailor-made to each client’s needs and a TMC should recommend the following:

  • How to stay fit and active, how to increase energy levels, how to be a healthy flier – pre-, during and post-flight – and how to deal with the stress of delays.
  • A list of preferred hotels, recommending those with good service levels situated near the location the individual is going to work.
  • A selection of reliable chauffeur services.
  • A rundown of restaurants near the traveller’s work location, serving healthy food.
  • The use of an aparthotel if the traveller is away for more than three to four days, to allow them to prepare healthy meals themselves.
  • Workplace wellness apps – employers can provide subscriptions to these to their top frequent travellers.
  • In terms of tracking, a TMC can advise on more scientific metrics than age, which may be considered discriminatory. A TMC can then load these onto the traveller profiles and implement policy and pre-approval processes linked to them.

what incentives can an employer offer its travellers?

As well as incentive trips, and other elements such as gift vouchers or reductions in private health premiums, employers can include a new travel expense category such as reimbursements for a day pass at a gym or yoga studio. And it’s worth reviewing a corporate traveller wellbeing programme quarterly as a good one will help recruit and retain talent.

The squeeze on the labour market and high-inflation risks means companies require employees to do more with increased workloads. Employers are responding with investments into wellbeing programmes which, by working in conjunction with their TMC, allows them to comprehensively support their business travellers.

are you ready to find out more?

If you’re building your first employee wellbeing plan or want to compare your programme strategy and capability with industry best practice, complete our exclusive survey. We’ve developed the metrics to identify where you can best support your employees’ wellbeing and travel experiences, providing bespoke recommendations.

Email or contact your client success manager for more information.