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First there were the additional fees charged by airlines for; boarding early, watching tv, having a meal on board, and checking luggage. Now event planning companies are learning that airlines are looking at adding extra fees for their preferred seats. Billed as a way to combat the ever increasing fuel costs that airlines are faced with, additional fees are becoming commonplace with most airlines. As an airline spokesperson indicated, we got used to the menu add-ons in the food and beverage industry and now many customers are content with airline add-on fees. The reason, they contend, is that many travelers are happy to decide for themselves what they’re willing to pay for and what they’re not willing to pay for.
Transportation is a Large Component of an Event Planning Company’s Services
Transportation is one of those logistical components to an overall conference or event. You see, getting all of your delegates to the meeting’s location on time is the number one goal to launch a successful conference. And when you’re dealing with many different airlines and many different airports those planning logistics can sometimes become a nightmare. Add in weather and have a whole other can of worms.
The good news for event planning companies is that many of these airlines are setting aside more window and aisle seats for their frequent flyers at no extra cost. After all, it is the frequent flyers that tend to pay a higher per ticket price compared with many other passengers on the same flight.
Tips on How You Can Be Creative When It Comes to Booking Transportation
- book as far out as possible to ensure that, in addition to availability, you’re able to pick a seat without an additional charge
- consider your route. If you have to schedule a connection flight as part of your travel plans consider using a less traveled airport for your hub. Flight availability and cost can be drastically affected by flying through less traveled airports.
- Flying days. Many event planning companies are now starting to look at the days of the week that they could schedule their conferences. It is a delicate balancing act as their goal is also to make sure the delegates don’t miss too much time in the office. However, by adjusting the days of your conference you can have dramatic impact on flight availability and costs.
- Check with your gate agent regarding seat moves. Even if you have exhausted all their traditional means of selecting your ideal seat with no lock, still check with your gate agent regarding a move. Quite often they are trying to accommodate other passengers with seat changes and your request may assist them.
- Dress appropriately. Yes a picture is worth a thousand words. How you look can have an impact on where you can be moved. An agent is not going to move someone that has pants hanging down to their knees beside a frequent business flyer. But if you dress in business casual you may be pleasantly surprised.
Airlines, like many industries today, are always looking for ways to add additional revenue to their bottom line. Like so, meeting planning companies today need to be creative when providing transportation for their clients. There are ways to keep additional costs to a minimum, you just need to be creative.