March 6, 2017

Q&A: How One Road Warrior Earned Over $1400 Booking Business Travel

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Mario, one of our top users has earned $1452.47 in personal gift cards by booking business travel with TripActions and we have the inside scoop on how how he did it within just a few months. In this Q&A, Mario shares tips and tricks for other road warriors and answers questions about his life on the road.

Mario is the VP of Sales Engineering at Netskope and has been using TripActions consistently since September 2016. He travels frequently for work and has taken 39 trips with TripActions.

1. What advice do you have for new business travelers?

There is nothing that replaces being with family, friends and the luxury and comforts that home provides but being away from home doesn't have to suck. Pick a brand of hotel and airline that meets the needs for your travel (i.e. international vs. domestic, etc) and stick to being a loyal customer of theirs. In time the perks and member rewards can make life much easier.

When possible and traveling to a new destination (specially abroad) bring along the spouse or friend and take time to have fun. Starting business travel is exciting and you can share in your life experiences with those close in your life.

Perhaps your company already offers a corporate travel management tool that rewards you for making wise decisions, if not ask them to implement one. Whether you use the rewards for personal travel or you treat yourself at the end of the year with the extra $ you have earned (and saved the company) it sure does make the holidays a bit more special.

If you are traveling abroad differently invest in TSA-PRE Check, Clear, Nexus, Global Entry, Sentri.

2. Where is your favorite place to travel for work?

So far I have loved Sydney and Tokyo. The food, people and culture in Tokyo was amazing and to my surprise VERY helpful and caring when you have food allergies. Sydney was beautiful place and you can tell living their provided good quality of life.

3. What is the best part of using TripActions to book business travel?

No kidding here but I love the customer service and I don't mean having to call in when I need to book travel, I mean TripActions employees really cater to making travel worries a thing of the past.  Days before my travel they confirm my reservations with the hotel, they look over my itinerary and if there are any issues they are on it - often before I know of it. It’s just a more personalized experience.

The second thing is the way the app works really does shape employee behavior of choosing flights that save the company cost and this results in personal rewards that I can use later on for personal travel or other gifts ideas.

4. How much have you earned using TripActions?

Somewhere close to $1400.

5. What’s your secret to earning the most when booking with TripActions?

No secret really, I generally look to see when I need to be at my destination and then explore the travel options available. If I have flexibility in my travel then I will opt for those options that often offer rewards but sometimes I don't have the flexibility. For hotel because I have reached lifetime member reward status I will look to stay at boutique hotels as a way to treat myself from the "status quo" when I can otherwise I stick to the brand.

6. You have earned over $1400 in Amazon gift cards. What have you bought with your earned rewards so far?

​Nothing yet. Waiting for that special something that I can splurge on​.

7. Do you have tricks for getting through the airport faster?

​YES! Up until about a few months ago TSA Pre-check was pretty good for getting through lines but it seems that any good thing is generally ruined by government (Oops...). TSA pre-check lines are pretty long these days and never fails that those that have not used it before will hold up the line.  So I also added Clear which there is never anyone in line and you still get the benefits of TSA pre-check. For international travel, certainly invest in Global Entry, Nexus/Sentri and don't say stupid things to the border patrol....many lessons learned and funny (in hindsight) moments experienced and don't forget to claim or discard any fruit you may have stuffed in your carry-on bag that the airline gave you before entering another country.

8. Do you have a routine when you stay in hotels?

Depends on where I am going to. I like staying at boutique hotels ​at times since they tend to have a bit energy and fun environment but full service hotels offer a lot of amenities that I like (better equipment at gym, food selection (important with my allergies) and of course loyalty rewards.

9. What tips do you have for other road warriors?

If you are not sitting in business class when traveling overseas and your flight is handled by a different carrier you can often get a MUCH cheaper price to upgrade to business class than domestic carriers.  Walk to the counter at the gate and ask for cost of upgrading to business class - you will be pleasantly surprised and may be shocked.  Also for these longer trips (even domestic ones) one cool idea is to buy one of those belts that people put around their luggage to distinguish them and use it around your tray table at your seat to give your feet the ability to get off the ground which will raise your legs up, give you ability to get more comfortable or you can buy a foot/leg hammock for flights.

10. Is there anything else you would like to share?

Bring back a little something for the family from time to time....it will pay off in other ways. You can earn like Mario or even more by booking business travel with TripActions.

 

Click here to talk to learn how you can start earning rewards for simply booking business travel with TripActions.