Why you should build an inclusive business travel programme

Krizia Mojado
Krizia Mojado
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A good bisnis perjalanan programme is proven to help companies achieve business goals, alongside the benefits of corporate travel such as closing deals with clients and evaluating potential investments, but there are other workforce benefits to business travel that is often overlooked – its efficacy in keeping a company’s employees engaged, productive and boosting retention.

As companies manage a diverse global workforce, remote or otherwise, it pays off to invest in good business travel management to make business trips simpler, safer and more purposeful. According to Skift, 44% of surveyed employees say they’ve learned new skills and grown as individuals after engaging in business trips. To take it further, it has also been reported that engaging in business trips often or occasionally helps with employee retention. 

How does workforce diversity impact business travel? Travel experiences can differ according to gender, ethnicity, religion and other individual traits, and when it comes to business travel, companies have a duty of care to ensure employees get the most out of their business trips. For those managing business trips, it’s key to consider the challenges and obstacles the company’s diverse workforce may experience while travelling. 

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Diversity challenges faced by travelling employees 

In addition to general challenges like health risks, cultural shocks, possible increase in stress and various safety issues, employees may find themselves in difficult situations that are caused by their belonging to a specific group. Here is an overview of said challenges.


While the last few decades certainly brought about many positive developments for women in the workplace and society, things are not always as rosy as they appear on the surface. This is particularly true for female employees who must travel to countries that lag in terms of women’s rights and acceptance in work environments. 

Berdasarkan Forbes, while the number of women travelling for business has been increasing steadily, an alarming 70% agree that they face more safety risks than their male counterparts. In a survey done by the Asosiasi Perjalanan Bisnis Global (GBTA) women business travellers’ primary concerns include safety (78 percent), sexual harassment and assault (72 percent), travel to certain countries and cities (68 percent), and the risk of assault or kidnapping (65 percent).

In certain environments, their sole presence can expose them to dangers they are not fully aware of. And even with this, GBTA and WWStay reveals that only 18% of companies’ travel policies addresses this concern directly in their duty of care.

People of Colour

Business travellers of colour are usually more exposed than others to episodes of discrimination and cultural shock that can cause them to experience significant levels of discomfort, stress and isolation in the locations in which they travel.  In 2020 alone, 62% of hate crimes committed in the US were racially motivated as reported by the Department of Justice. 

Being the target of bullying, insults, microaggressions, or just uncooperative behaviours might make it difficult to adapt to the new environment and get their job done. 

Travellers with Physical and Mental Disabilities

Disability travel is a more widespread activity than most imagine, with its economic impact amounting to more than $58 billion. BBC in an artikel they wrote, revealed that only a concerning 1% of victims from disability hate crimes result in criminal charges. This is a call for companies to up their efforts in getting more involved and better their duty of care. 

When finding themselves in a new environment, people with disabilities can face numerous issues, ranging from poor support, lack of dedicated infrastructure, transportation challenges, orientation problems and unhelpful or disregarding behaviour from other individuals. 


From legal to social interactions, LGBTQ+ travellers still face a number of challenges. Statista reported that as of 2022, 68 countries still criminalize homosexuality. In addition, an article published by Harvard discussed the challenges transgenders can face just by entering a different country if their official identification documents do not match their current appearance and presentation. 

This recent study from Travel Pulse proves that members of the LGBTQ+ community still face prejudices along with negative interactions when on the road. A notable finding from the survey was the discriminatory experiences encountered by LGBTQ travellers during their trips. In particular, 100% of travellers from India, 97% from Denmark, 93% from Mexico, and 72% from the U.S. reported instances of negative treatment in public while travelling. These negative interactions range from pointing, stereotyping and verbal abuse by locals and other travellers. 

It is incumbent upon organizations to take necessary measures to minimize these risks. To support their diverse workforce during international travel, organizations can begin by recognizing the unique challenges they may encounter. Prioritizing the safety and well-being of all staff members, irrespective of their orientation, is an essential aspect of fulfilling their Duty of Care.

How you can get started

The first thing is to listen to your employees. Keeping the door open to travelling employees that may want to share any concerns and carefully assessing their inputs is the first crucial step in developing an effective support system. Listening to the needs of their employees and making an extra effort to understand their challenges can help employers better understand how they can provide the proper assistance instead of basing it on mere assumptions.

After that, you can evaluate the options you have, best to start with considering a travel management solution to add to your business travel programme. Modern travel management platforms provide a customisable duty of care, safety assessment and cross-analysis tools that give management a complete picture of where each traveller is or will be. This allows travel managers and HR leaders to determine which safety measures and recommendations should be implemented to ensure diverse workers have a comfortable and productive trip experience.


Integrate your business travel programme with technology for maximum workforce satisfaction

At first sight, it may seem impersonal to onboard a digital solution to manage the business travel needs of your people. But a dedicated travel team a phone call or chat message away at any time is invaluable in improving the travel experience and quality of your business travel programme. Invest time in selecting the best-fit travel management solution for your business that is comprehensive, streamlined and looks after every aspect of your employees’ business trips from start to finish. See it for yourself memesan demo atau mendaftar untuk uji coba gratis of TruTrip today!