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How to Create Travel Policies for the World’s Priciest Cities

Any seasoned business traveler could tell you that you’ll pay more for a trip to New York City than you will to spend a few nights in Kansas City. However, you might be surprised to learn that the Big Apple’s prices pale in comparison to some other cities around the world. According to a recent study by ExpertMarket, NYC isn’t even in the top 20 priciest cities for business travelers.

The Most Expensive Cities for Business Trips
So where will business travelers encounter the highest per diem prices? ExpertMarket reported that Caracas, the capital of Venezuela, takes the title of most expensive city. The source found that corporate travelers spent an average of $611 per day on accommodations, car rentals and food.

You may think you’re in the clear if your company’s travelers aren’t heading to South America any time soon, but there are a number of more frequently visited metropolises that also made the top 10. Hong Kong, London and Paris are quite pricey for road warriors, all costing more than $500 per day.

Travel managers can expect high expenses from trips to London. Travel managers can expect high expenses from trips to London.

Businesses that deal mostly with domestic travel have a slight advantage, as U.S. cities all cost significantly less for visitors. According to ExpertMarket, San Francisco is the most expensive American city, with average per diem costs of $444. NYC is a close second at $442 per day. The only other U.S. city that costs more than $400 daily is Boston, which came in at $413.

Tips to Keep Expenses Down on Pricey Trips
Just because these costs are a little daunting doesn’t mean companies should forego travel altogether. Corporate trips are a necessary part of many business deals and often have impressive return on investment. Travel managers should use certain expert tricks to save money when sending road warriors to the world’s priciest cities.

“Many cities have several small airports.”

Use Regional Airports
When travelers head to London, they usually fly into a large airport like Heathrow or Gatwick. However, there are actually six international airports located around the city. Many large metro areas are served by several different transportation hubs, so travel managers should encourage travelers to shop around for flights when they are traveling to expensive locations. Many times flights to smaller or regional airports will cost significantly less without posing too much of an inconvenience.

Find an Airport Car Service
Even if workers prefer to have a rental car when they travel, it can be best for travelers to use a car service when money is tight. Car rentals may seem like a viable option, but there are often extraneous fees and charges that can significantly raise the final expense. Instead, travel managers should instruct their charges to use a tech-enabled car service such as GroundLink, which is available in 110 countries around the world and can be booked via mobile app or website.

“GroundLink provides fully transparent pricing before travelers confirm a ride, so there are no billing surprises later for workers or their travel managers,” said GroundLink CEO Dean Sivley.

Look for All-Inclusive Deals
Road warriors can easily rack up hundreds of dollars in extra charges in cities like London, Paris or San Francisco. Little expenses like WiFi access, sending faxes, making international calls and dry cleaning can significantly raise a worker’s per diem costs. To keep prices down, travel managers should look for flights and accommodations that offer these services for free or try to negotiate these amenities into their contracts when selecting approved travel providers. This will help to make the trip more affordable.

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