When it comes to airfare and travel, refundable air tickets generally cost somewhere between two and four times the cost of non-refundable fares. This may lead you to wonder who is buying them and why. Despite the high cost, refundable fares remain attractive to certain travellers – generally those booking corporate travel.
Many businesses still prefer for their travellers to buy these unrestricted tickets, especially when purchasing airfare in advance. Simply put – plans change and things need to be flexible and that need is not reflected in less-expensive non-refundable airfare.
Being able to avoid the hassle that comes with changes and cancellations is well worth the added costs for many companies. One of the major perks of refundable airfare is having the ability to avoid some of the crazy fees that airlines charge these days – whether cancellations or changing fees. Many look at the costs of refundable airfare as the lesser of two evils.
However, with business travel spend expected to reach new heights year over year until at least 2020, it’s important to delegate areas in which your travel program can save money. If giving corporate travellers the ability to book refundable tickets is important to your travel program, know that it’s possible to negotiate discounted rates on unrestricted airfare if you or your travel management company have an agreement with that specific airline.
For the reasons listed above, unrestricted airfare will always be sold at a premium. It’s up to you as a travel manager to decide if it’s important for your travellers to have access to book these flights when establishing your corporate travel policy. How are you going to reach the goals set for your managed travel program?
If you’re looking for the right travel management company to help your organization implement a customized business travel solution that suits your company’s specific travel needs, Midlink Travel can help.
Contact us to learn more.