As a travel agent, one of the best ways to ensure that your clients are happy with your service is by knowing each of their preferences when it comes to traveling. This is especially critical if you cater to businesses. Since business travelers will most likely require your services to handle their travel arrangements often, it is quite beneficial for you to keep a database of their preferences. This is where business travel profiles are extremely important. Creating one is pretty simple and will involve taking note of all the preferences of each business traveler that uses your service and placing all the necessary information in a single form or sheet. This way, when a particular client comes a knocking, making the arrangements will be easier. Here are some steps in creating a business travel profile for your business clients.
- Start with a template. The first step in arranging your client database is by creating a template of the form you will use. If you want pre-made forms that you can simply fill in the fields, then searching the Internet should provide you with free templates you can download. These templates will probably be in Excel, Word, or PDF formats. Download the template and start using it. You can either print it out and fill it up by hand or keep it as a digital file on your computer. Doing both is highly recommended. Now, if you prefer to create your own form from scratch, then simply use Microsoft Excel to create your template. Don't worry; if you prefer it to be in Word or PDF formats, you can easily convert it later on through free web-based document conversion sites. Creating the template using Excel is easier for most people. On the other hand, if you are familiar with Microsoft Access, then you can create the form using that as well however, you will not be able to have your clients fill it up for you. So, if you plan to send the form to your client for them to fill up, then stick with Excel, Word, or PDF templates.
- Prepare the form and collect the info. When preparing the form, whether through a readymade template that you downloaded off the web or through a template you created from scratch, make sure that you have all the fields nailed. Basically, the form should start out with the client's personal information such as complete name, address, contact numbers, date of birth, and email address. Follow these other important details such as Passport, Visa, and credit card information. Once that is done, proceed with the fields that are concerned with the client's traveling preferences such as airline, hotels, car rentals, etc... Make sure that the form you create has these fields and is easy for any client to fill up. Once the form is set, you can collect the information from a particular client by either sending it to him and asking him to fill it up and send it back or by simply entering the information as the client dictates it over the phone or in person.
- Keep the file handy. Once the business travel profile has been filled up for a particular client, send him a copy and keep the master copy in your file. It is highly recommended to have a digital and hard copy file for backup purposes. If you are filing a hard copy of the form, place it inside a folder or envelope and keep the file safe inside a filing cabinet.
That is how simple it is to create a business travel profile. This should be done for every new customer you encounter whether you expect him to be a onetime customer or return customer. Maintaining a database of your customers is smart and should be done by every travel agent out there.