Be a Travel Desk Manager with an MNC

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We all know that multinational corporations & other large corporations employ thousands of people, have multiple offices across every major city in the world and have diversified business interests. Such large organisations, in their own right, are comparable to countries. Such large corporations have large teams with each specialising in a different function and working in tandem to ensure continued profitable operations. Managing travel & stay arrangements for such large companies is a huge task and is taken care of by teams specialised in planning travel, stay arrangements.

What does a Travel Desk Manager do?
With scores of employees needing to travel across the globe, the necessity of a travel professional to handle travel & stay arrangements becomes paramount. A Travel Desk Manager completes this responsibility. Be it travel within the country or abroad, be it travel by road, train or air, a Travel Desk Manager ensures that the employees reach their destinations on time & have a comfortable stay that allows them to complete their business tasks. A Travel Desk Manager is also responsible for other aspects of travel such making available Forex, Traveller’s Cheque, Local SIM Cards etc. & processing of papers for Visa.
A Travel Desk Manager’s task is also challenging because she needs to ensure adherence to the travel policies defined by the company.

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Who can become a Travel Desk Manager?
A Travel Desk Manager needs to be a very efficient planner. This calls for having excellent organisational & planning skills. At the same time, a Travel Desk Manager also needs to have strong analytical skills that shall help her in reducing travel costs. Technical skills such as dynamics of airline pricing, hotel pricing etc. are needed to be able to carry out your responsibilities in the best possible manner. Apart from this, a Travel Desk Manager also needs to be a quick learner to be able to understand the travel policies of her company.

Blue Whale Academy’s BSc in Tourism & Hospitality Management (UGC approved) is a graduate course that is custom built for ensuring a holistic understanding of the core concepts in travel, tourism & hospitality. For, those looking at international certifications, there’s CTH Level 4 (UK Qualification)
For those looking to join at senior positions, an MBA in Tourism & Hospitality (UGC approved) is the correct course.

What qualifications should any candidate possess?
A Travel Desk Manager needs to be a very good organiser & co-ordinator. The qualifications desired in a Travel Desk Manager are as follows:

  • Have excellent co-ordination skills
  • Excellent skills to create and maintain MIS in excel sheets
  • Have strong communication & written skills in English language
  • Strong interpersonal skills
  • Excellent negotiation skills
  • Pleasing personality & strong grooming standards. This is especially true if one is employed as a Travel Desk Manager at a star hotel wherein a Travel Desk Manager caters to the needs of the hotel’s guests

What does a Travel Desk Manager do?
Catering to all the travel needs of the employees is the responsibility of the Travel Desk Manager.

  • Co-ordinate all aspects of the business travel of the employee with respect to date of departure, date of arrival, local travel & stay
  • Find out the best possible flight tickets that result in minimal loss of work time
  • For international travel, take care of all formalities for processing business visa
  • Procure foreign exchange at the best possible rates
  • Arrange for other necessities such as local SIM card, ground transportation etc.
  • Making travel allowance available to the travelling employee
  • Maintain all the records in an excel sheet and the company’s software (if any)
  • Co-ordinate with all service providers such as Ground Transportation, Hotel etc. to ensure the correct service is made available to the travelling employee
  • Collate all the travel expenditures and reconcile the records with the accounts department
  • Collect all travel proofs such as Boarding Passes, Hotel Bills etc. and file them for accounting records
  • Ensure strict adherence to the company’s travel policies

How is the work environment?
As a Travel Desk Manager, one could directly be employed either with a large corporation or with a star hotel. Alternately, one could also be employed with a travel company and be deputed as the Travel Desk Manager of an MNC or a large company

  • Working Hours: As a Travel Desk Manager, your work shift would be regular 9am – 5pm shift. However, for co-ordination purposes, one may be required to make & receive phone calls up to midnight. This might specifically apply when any employee travels oversees.
  • Week-Offs & Holidays: The rules of the company where one works determine the nature of the week-offs & holidays. Again, even on week-offs or holidays, a Travel Desk Manager would be expected to make & receive phone calls especially if some travel arrangement has not been correct.
  • Place of work: A Travel Desk Manager is stationed in the office premises of the company she is deputed to. Travel Desk Managers might also be stationed at the office of the travel company and might cater to multiple small enterprises as a part of her job responsibility.
  • Grooming & appearance: A Travel Desk Manager is expected to comply to the dress codes of the company where she is deputed.

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How about the career progression & growth?
Being a Travel Desk Manager requires a highly responsible outlook. As Travel Desk Manager is in charge of all official travel arrangements, she is authorised to sanction money for ticket purchase, hotel bookings etc. With experience and promotion, the scale of responsibility of a Travel Desk Manager increases. Travel Desk Managers handling small enterprises get promoted to handle large enterprises or MNCs. Those already handling large accounts become Team Manager and manage multiple Travel Desk Managers. Those with strong accounting & finance skills might also get promoted to management level positions within the organisation and will be required to draft & suggest travel policies, allocate travel budgets etc.

How much is the starting salary?
Fresher(s) typically joining at a junior position would usually start by assisting a Travel Desk Manager and their starting pay scales could range from INR 10,000 to INR 15,000 per month. Experienced professionals with a post graduation in Travel, Tourism & Hospitality could expect to draw salaried upwards of INR 25,000 per month.

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How to become a Travel Desk Manager?
Blue Whale Academy offers courses that provide the theoretical concepts required to master the core concepts in Travel, Tourism & Hospitality. One should also look at gaining experience through summer internship & on-the-job training with travel companies. Fresher(s) should be quick learners and should also be well versed with concepts such as accounts & finance that will help them fast track their career growth and reach senior level positions in a shorter span of time.

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