by WEX Travel
The travel industry is being forced to evolve rapidly with economic, political and technological factors all putting increased pressure on businesses. In today’s travel landscape, having the ability to work with the right mix of suppliers is vital to your success in winning customer bookings.
As a travel business it is more important than ever that you maintain strong relationships with existing suppliers, whilst ensuring you have the ability to start working with new suppliers quickly when needed.
Payments play an essential role in helping you build and maintain strong relationships with suppliers anywhere in the world. When building a strategy for supplier payments it is important to understand the challenges that suppliers face when accepting payments.
Infographic: How Are Travel Suppliers Paid?
Research conducted by Phocuswright into Europe’s travel payments landscape, which was co-sponsored by WEX, explored the current state of payments to travel suppliers.
It highlighted the methods travel suppliers currently support and how this will change in the future:
- Physical Cards are the most widely supported payment method amongst travel suppliers with 91% supporting credit cards and 88% supporting debit cards, this looks set to rise even further in the future
- Virtual Card Numbers (VCNs) are supported by 63% of suppliers with a further 16% set to support VCNs in the future – bringing the total to 79%
- Cash at the time of booking and prepaid cards are respectively supported by 50% of suppliers, these methods are likely to see little growth acceptance amongst suppliers in the future
- Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) is supported by 44% of travel suppliers, this looks set to grow to 57% of suppliers in the future
- Checks are supported by 41% of suppliers, this is the only payment method that will not see any growth in the number of suppliers supporting it in the future
The research also demonstrated that the time spent by travel businesses managing payments is significant. For large businesses (€10 million+ in sales annually) managing payments can require 4 or more staff members spending 16 hours each a week looking after payments
Whitepaper: 5 Reasons Why Travel Suppliers Love Virtual Payments
Based on the research from Phocuswright, our whitepaper explores the challenges that suppliers face when accepting payments:
- Impact of manual payment processes – just how much time and resource do suppliers have to devote to handling payments?
- Cost of cross-border and foreign currency payments – how does receiving payments from different locations and in foreign currencies impact suppliers?
- Problems presented by particular payment methods – how do payments to different types of suppliers vary? What common challenges are presented?
The whitepaper shows how virtual payments can help solve the key payment challenges that suppliers face, while also benefiting your travel business.