Published August 17, 2004
Volume 12, Number 8

Hunter Travel Managers Takes the Hassle Out of Business Travel

Nelson Hunter
Nelson Hunter, owner of Hunter Travel Managers, brings the world to his customers.

By George Walsh
Special to NETWORK

Travel is not only a fact of life for many businesses, it’s also a major expense. While extremely large companies often have their own dedicated travel department that finds the best deals, mid-sized companies or those that are just starting out typically don’t have that luxury. Hunter Travel Managers, at 4637 Chabot Drive, specializes in taking care of the travel needs of such organizations using state-of the art tools to be sure that the job is done right.

“95% of the travel we book is corporate travel and the other 5% is leisure travel for our corporate clients,” says Nelson Hunter, owner of Hunter Travel Managers. “We specialize in emerging companies and medium-sized corporations. Travel is the second or third largest expense in most of the companies we serve. Companies that are growing fast and focused on sales and development really want to pay attention to their travel expenses but they don’t want to do it internally. They really want someone to manage it for them. That’s what we specialize in. We act as their outsourced travel department.”

Hunter Travel Managers has been in business since 1983 and in Hacienda since 1991. The company has 30 employees working in its offices in Hacienda and 10 remote agents who work locally out of home offices. In addition, the company has two employees working out of Austin TX and two in Los Altos. The companies that Hunter serves range from those that spend $100,000 in travel per year up to $4 million.

While Hunter Travel Managers uses computerized booking, the software and services the company uses provide a distinct advantage to simply getting online yourself and using a commercial online service. Hunter can often negotiate bulk air ticket savings up to 40%, save companies up to 48% off published hotel rates, and reduce service fees up to 50%. In addition, Hunter offers its clients on-line, real-time reporting to help them control their travel spending. The travel booking application used by Hunter helps companies manage the processes and costs associated with travel by searching public, corporate, and web-only fares. During the reservation and approval process, it enforces corporate business travel rules to keep trips within budget. The application can also integrate travel information into a client’s email, calendar, expense management, and financial systems. “The systems that we offer to emerging companies are virtually identical to those that the Fortune 100 companies use in house,” Hunter says.

Hunter Travel Managers also prides itself on its years of experience in corporate travel. “Service is number one at our company,” Hunter says. “The average tenure of our agents here at Hunter is 14 years and their average tenure in the travel business is 18 years, so they’re very experienced. Many companies have self-booking tools that they use but they’re useless if you don’t know how to use them. Where we’ve really invested a lot of time and money is in training our clients to make our online booking tools work for them and help them dramatically lower their travel costs. We have clients that have been with us for 15 years.”


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