Sometimes, a big part of running your own business is travel. Depending on what your business does, you may find yourself on a plane more often than not.
While travel is definitely a perk (especially if your client is footing the bill), there's still the reality that we need to keep our budgets in check. Just because most of what you spend on these trips is a tax deduction doesn't mean you should unnecessarily spend money. Additionally, you don't want to get slammed with fees while traveling or miss out on free perks.
Fortunately, there are a few apps that can help you travel better while making sure you stick to a budget.
TripIt is a longtime favorite of travelers. Not only does it help you keep all your travel plans organized in one place on your smartphone, it also notifies you of changes in travel plans and alternatives. I've personally been using TripIt for years and the more I travel the more I find myself relying on it.
I'm not the only one either.
"Personally, I have found TripIt saves me both time and money because I'm more organized and able to stay on top of my plans during any given trip," says Holly Porter-Johnson, frugal travel expert at ClubThrifty.com.
When asked if users should stick to the free version or upgrade to TripIt Pro, Johnson suggests trying out the free version first, though she has considered upgrading because she travels often.
Another favorite of avid travelers is AwardWallet, a free app that helps you keep track of all your rewards points including airline miles, hotel loyalty programs and credit card rewards.
If you're traveling a lot for business, you may be racking up a ton of points you can later exchange for free travel and free hotel stays. The problem is most people forget they have these points and they go unused. According to an ABC News report, 25 percent of people who collect airline miles let them expire. This is free money, people!
Fortunately, AwardWallet can help you keep track of all your rewards points in one place for free. Additionally, they'll tell you when miles are about to expire so you can make sure to actually use them. (Note: TripIt Pro allows you to do this as well for a small monthly fee.)
If Uber and Lyft aren't your thing or you find yourself needing to rent a car during business travel, check out Turo. Turo allows you to rent a car from real people instead of one of the three major car rental companies.
This makes the whole car rental thing much cheaper. You can rent a car from Turo for as little as $10 to $150 a day.
The only downside is your credit card won't cover insurance for a car rental from Turo, but they do have affordable coverage options you can purchase.
You don't have to let travel expenses put a major dent in your company budget. By using these apps and services, you can ensure that you're getting around while still saving money.