Corporate Credit Card Changes Coming Soon

With each Tallie release, we try to improve and enhance our customers’ experience, particularly in areas of critical importance. Soon, we will be releasing some changes to our corporate credit card transaction importing functionality, which may require some planning and adjustment for our customers. We know it’s important for our customers to plan ahead for change, which is why we’re sharing this information now. The end result will be a much improved experience, and our Product Experts will be available to help you if a change is required. Read on for our planned changes:

Introduction of New Bank-Direct Data Transfer Connections

Beginning in early December, we will begin offering a brand new service for corporate credit card management. Tallie will give you the tools to establish an agreement with the issuing bank for each of your credit cards which, once signed, will grant the authority to the bank to provide regular transfer of credit card transaction details for all cardholders directly to Tallie, without any intermediary.

Cards Supported
Upon release, we will be able to support standard data feed formats from American Express, Visa and MasterCard. If you hold a different brand of card, please reach out to our Product Experts to review the potential data formats available.

Early Action Steps
Tallie will not be offering beta access, however you may work with the Product Expert team to get the agreement in place with your bank and begin the data transfer process early. This will allow the Product Expert team to confirm data is being received properly and ensure that you will be able to take advantage of the feature when it is released.

Guaranteed Multi-Card Support
As long as the bank provides identifying details in the transfer file to distinguish between cards, such as last four digits or cardholder name, Tallie will automatically recognize each card’s transactions and route those to the appropriate card.

Planned Sunset of Third Party Aggregation Feeds for Card Accounts with Multiple Cardholders

At the end of the year, we will terminate support for our multi-cardholder credit card feeds from third party card aggregators in favor of our new bank-direct feature. Single card feeds will not be affected by this change.

Troubleshooting Tips
If a multi-cardholder feed experiences an issue between now and our termination date, our Product Experts will offer you one of four interim solutions:

  1. If the card is issued by Chase, American Express, Citi or Silicon Valley Bank, a Product Expert can work with you to establish a “direct connect” OFX connection between Tallie and the bank
  2. You may request individual login credentials from the bank for each card, then connect directly to each of these cards via an aggregated feed
  3. You can create a profile for statement upload for each card, then perform a statement upload procedure on each profile
  4. Begin the process to establish a bank-direct data transfer connection early by reaching out to your Account Manager

For complete documentation, please visit our How to Transition off of Multiple Card Accounts help document.

Connection Transfer for Some Single-Card Accounts

In early November we will be shifting providers for some of our single-cardholder credit card feeds. If your credit card is affected, a Product Expert will be reaching out directly to the administrator of your account to reconnect via a new provider.

Feel free to contact support for any questions related to these alternative card connection options. We can be reached by email at support@usetallie.com, over the phone at +1-888-874-1118 x2 or via live chat in product. Please excuse any prolonged wait times for responses as we are assisting each respective client and thoroughly addressing all concerns.

Critical Information at Your Fingertips: Tallie Expense Report Software 11.1 Release Notes

There’s been a mantra around the Tallie offices in the last few months — we’re on a mission to ensure a seamless expense report software management process for our client administrators. It’s a complex process to keep all your systems in sync, so we strive to keep it simple and functioning smoothly.

With that in mind, Tallie engineers have created a more robust export experience for our software release version 11.1 that provides you with more comprehensive status and historical information than ever before. Additionally, we’ve added a few enhancements to our integrations (particularly Intacct) and will begin sending out invoice and payment confirmation via email with the next billing cycle.

Export Status Tracking

Prior to exporting to any integrated system, Tallie has always run each expense report through a comprehensive validation process, where Tallie validates that all mapped entities on the report are active and properly linked to entities in the accounting system. If errors are found, the report will be placed in error state with specific steps towards remediation indicated. Once validation is complete, Tallie processes the expense data into a format appropriate for transmission to the target system and finally delivers the data. In version 11.1, we are now displaying to our users exactly which expenses and reports are validating or processing at any given time, before being transmitted. We hope this further transparency will help with troubleshooting and understanding of our process.

Tallie Expense Report Softaware - Status Tracking on Report Line Items

The status and destination of each expense is communicated in real time while the expense report is being exported.

What does Queued Status Mean?

If a report remains in queued state for a duration of time, Tallie is waiting to connect to the integrated system. QuickBooks Desktop customers can clear reports from queued state by signing in and connecting TallieConnect.

Expense Export History

Tallie’s powerful multi-destination export logic is capable of breaking apart a report and exporting it to a wide variety of destinations, including payroll files, practice management files, accounting systems and bill pay systems, all with the click of the Export button. With this power comes great responsibility, so we’re now appending an export history record to each individual expense on the export page. This history area will communicate to you where each expense has been exported and the most recent date/time of that export action.

Tallie Expense Report Software - Export History on Report Line Items

Once an expense has been exported, Tallie provides you with the destination and date/time of the export event.

Email Notifications for Subscription Billing

Tallie regularly bills our clients at the close of the month. We’ve made our invoices available in the Billing area of Settings for quite some time, but now we’re also going to send each system administrator an email with the full invoice prior to charging the credit card, and a follow-up receipt once the payment has gone through. We hope this helps you better track your Tallie costs. Please note that if you are on the Enterprise Plan, you may not receive these emails as regularly. Please refer to your signed agreement for your billing cadence.

Tallie Expense Report Software - Payment Receipt Confirmation

Invoice and payment receipt emails containing line item detail will be sent to company administrators.

Additional Feature Enhancements

  • Intacct Users: You can now mass update selection of export enterprise (Export Expenses To) on People page.
  • Intacct Users: We now provide Vendor on the line item when exporting to Accounts Payable.
  • Intacct Users: Your account can now be configured so that managers from Intacct are no longer assigned as approvers during sync. Please contact Support for system configuration.
  • New Currencies Added: MYR Malaysian Ringgit, EGP Egyptian Pound
  • Fixed: Archived expense categories are no longer being auto-mapped on iOS and Android apps.
  • Fixed Some customers had difficulty deleting credit card profiles.

Do these updates improve your process? Send us your thoughts on the latest version of Tallie expense report software – we love your feedback. You can reach out to our Product Expert team by email at support@usetallie.com or by calling 888-874-1118 Ext 2.

Executive Assistant & Better-Than-Ever Integrations: Tallie Expense Report Software 11.0 Release Notes

Tallie is consistently recognized for building the most robust accounting integrations in the industry. In order to maintain this standard, we focused the majority of our efforts on fixing as many imperfections as we could find in our integrations, as well as adding new functionality such as exporting merchant names to Bill.com and fine-tuning our CSV template generator to make them more powerful than ever.

In addition to the enhancements made to integrations and export, the highly anticipated Executive Assistant feature is now live in beta format for select customers! A user can be given the Executive Assistant permission and assigned to manage tasks for one or more executives.

Export corporate credit card merchants to your Vendor list via Bill.com

Knowing where you’ve spent your money is critical to running a business. However, it is often difficult to track expenses by vendor when exporting expense reports in bill format because the vendor is the payee on the bill (the employee or credit card), not the merchant from whom each item was purchased.

In this release, we introduced a new option to include merchant/vendor data in non-reimbursable exports to Bill.com. When exporting corporate card transactions as individual paid bills, admins now have the option to export merchant names to Bill.com Vendors list in addition to the default Credit Card Vendor option. This enables admins and accountants to export both reimbursable and non-reimbursable expenses to Bill.com for approval and attachment purposes without sacrificing the ability to run a report on corporate credit card spend by merchant.

Tallie Expense Report Software Corporate Card Export Settings for Bill.com

Select “Individual Transaction Merchant” on the Export Settings page to use this feature.

 

Tallie Expense Report Software Export Merchants to Bill.com

When configured, each bill will be exported from Tallie to Bill.com payable to the credit card transaction merchant.

[Beta] New Executive Assistant feature gives the ability to manage tasks for one or more executives

A select number of our customers and partners have been asked to beta-test our new Executive Assistant feature. When this feature is activated, users can be granted the executive assistant permission to access and manage other users’ accounts. This access can be configurable to date ranges and a specific subset of permissions.

When acting as an executive assistant, he/she will be able to create expenses, approve reports, export, and manage Tallie settings on behalf of the executive without receiving full access to the executive’s account. Additionally, they will be able to perform these executive assistant functions without needing to sign out of their personal Tallie account.

When a report is submitted to the executive for approval, both executive and delegate will receive a notification and can approve directly from it. The use of the Executive Assistant feature does not affect billing as active user is calculated based on expense owner, rather than the people creating expenses.

Tallie Expense Report Software Executive Assistant Beta Feature

When acting as an executive assistant for another user, you can access both your individual account and the executive’s account using your email and password.

This feature is currently in beta mode and will be released to our general user base after we receive feedback from our early evaluators and make further improvements. If you’re interested in being a part of the beta team, please contact our Product Experts and we will provide you with a beta program overview and help you configure the functionality for the needs of your company.

Product Enhancements & Fixes

  • For our customers with access to multiple Tallie accounts, the styling of the Identity Details page has been updated for more clarity.
  • We have placed more restrictions on syncing a single Tallie account with potentially conflicting accounting and/or bill pay systems.
  • The engine for creating .CSV export files has been updated significantly, with a great deal more options, additional export formats and the ability to search for the data fields.
  • We have added optional enhanced restrictions on Intacct sync, configurable by each dimension.
  • Added multiple foreign currencies: Bangladeshi Taka (BDT), Moldovan Leu (MDL), Botswana Pula (BWP), Namibian Dollar (NAD), Pakistani Rupee (PKR)
  • We’ve addressed the issue where expense mappings appeared to be erased when approvers edit expense reports, but reappeared upon page refresh.

Would you like to be a beta tester for our new Executive Assistant feature? Reach out to our Product Expert team at support@usetallie.com or by calling 888-874-1118 Ext 2.

For the love of accountants: Tallie Expense Report Software 10.10.3 Mini Release Notes

Here at Tallie we consider ourselves the expense report software solution of choice for the accounting profession. This means we’re committed to offering a beautiful user experience that provides a high quality of expense data processing at a fraction of the time. We don’t cut corners on finance teams’ needs. Instead, we go meet with our accountants in their offices, to watch and learn how they use Tallie and how Tallie can be improved to meet their needs. We are indebted to our accounting partners for their brilliant feedback and insight.

The last few releases have featured improvements based on these important relationships, and this mini release is no different. We made some small changes that we believe will help save time in the accounting cycle — we hope these tweaks will save you some time too.

Forward a Receipt from Your Email…and Pick Your Destination!

Let’s say you’re the business owner of three different restaurants and making regular purchases for each or perhaps you’re a staff accountant processing expenses on a regular basis for 10 different outsourced accounting clients. In both cases, because sign in privileges are based on email address, you have the ability to sign in to Tallie on the web or mobile app and switch between a variety of company accounts. However, if you’re forwarding email-based receipts we haven’t had a method to designate a destination company account, so Tallie has sent those email-based receipts to all connected company accounts.

Tallie Expense Report Software Enterprise Selector

When connected to multiple Tallie company accounts you will see each listed on the main selection screen

With this mini release, we’re introducing a new feature that lets you designate a company account destination for each emailed-in receipt. Simply edit the subject line of the email to include the name of the company account and that emailed-in receipt will be sent to that company account only.

Tallie Expense Report Software Enterprise Name in Email

Enter the name of your company in the subject line of your email

If you ever have any questions about which company account you’re currently using, just check the top right corner of your screen while signed in to the Tallie web app, or access the company-switching menu in the mobile apps.

Tallie Expense Report Software Enterprise Name

From within a Tallie company account you can find the exact name in the upper right of your screen

Tallie Expense Report Software Mobile Enterprise Selector

Account-switching functionality is accessed within the mobile apps by tapping the 3-line menu in the upper left of the main screen, then tapping on your name.

Improved Searching by Accounting Codes

In our 10.10.2 Mini Release we allowed for searching in all lists by accounting codes, giving power users more tools for coding their expenses. In this release, we’ve updated the appearance of those drop-down menus so that codes stand out as visual tags, enabling users to choose to focus more on codes or names, depending on their preference.

Tallie Expense Report Software Codes Styled as Tags

Accounting codes are now displayed as tags in Tallie drop-down menus

Are you interested in becoming a Tallie accountant partner? Tallie offers affiliate and reseller programs for accounting firms, plus a wide variety of features to help you manage expense reports in an outsourced accounting practice. For more information, please reach out to our sales team at 800.592.5144. We look forward to hearing from you!

We love our admins! Tallie Expense Report Software 10.10.2 Mini Release Notes

You know that moment when you’ve built something and you can’t wait to show it off? We know the feeling. Sometimes we just can’t wait for a release to deliver you some great new features. Announcing Tallie’s mini-release 10.10.2 featuring admin expense management goodness!

Quick Code Search

Tallie Expense Report Software Search by Code

When coding expenses to list data in Tallie, you can now search by code as well as name.

Was this expense for the Lead Generation sub-department of Marketing or was it for the Direct sub-department of Marketing? In many accounting systems, these departments are represented using codes as well as names, like 410 and 412, for instance. To some of you expense coding goes super quick if you can just type in code 410 and rest assured that the expense is getting coded to Marketing:Lead Generation. Well, now you can! Tallie supports this feature for all lists that feature accounting codes: customers, projects, departments, classes and locations.

Quick Masquerade Access & Switch

Tallie Expense Report Software Masquerade from Menu

Admins can quickly enter masquerade mode by selecting “Begin Masquerade” from their user menu.

Tallie’s masquerade mode is a feature that saves admins a ton of time, by enabling them to act as the user in their account and move expenses through the system. We’ve updated this feature in the mini release to save even more time. Now, you can access masquerade mode from any screen and easily switch between users just by selecting a new person from the header.

Tallie Expense Report Software Enter Masquerade

Once in masquerade mode, an admin may select a user to perform actions on that user’s behalf.

Finally, entering and exiting the mode is as simple as making a selection from the user menu in the upper right of your screen.

Tallie Expense Report Software Switch User

While masquerading as a user, you may switch users or exit masquerade mode.

Do these updates help your workflow? Send us your thoughts on the latest version of Tallie expense report software – we love your feedback. Reach out to our Product Expert team at support@usetallie.com or by calling 888-874-1118 Ext 2.

More Options & Better Performance: Tallie Expense Report Software 10.10 Release Notes

Fresh on the heels of our updated expense report app for iOS and Android, we’re happy to announce the release of Tallie expense report software v10.10. We focused on giving our account administrators a greater range of options for managing Tallie accounts and spent quite a bit of time improving overall Tallie performance. Additionally, we’ve released a brand new status page at status.tallie.com, which you can use to track Tallie uptime. If you’d like to be the first to know about our scheduled maintenance or performance issues, subscribe to updates on that page. Here are some more details on the release:

Drop-Down Menu Performance

When it’s time to code your expenses to classes, projects and other accounting list data, you want the process to be quick and painless. We’ve introduced a few solutions to help you along.

Tallie Expense Report Software Improved Drop Down Menu Performance

Visual Display of Relationships
Let’s say you have multiple layers of projects, departments or locations. We now help you sort through this data by displaying parent-child relationships with visual indentation in the lists.

Search by Parent Project
For our customers who use the Tallie projects list to manage multiple jobs for each of their clients, we’ve built the ability to search for sub-projects by the parent name.

Accounting Code Display
If your company uses codes to reference classes, locations, customers and any other list data, we’ll show those codes to you in the drop down menu as well.

Billable Feature Controller

We originally built Tallie with professional service providers in mind, giving them powerful tools to track expenses against customers and jobs, as well as the flexibility to bill expenses directly back to clients. As it turns out, many of our customers who love Tallie actually don’t have any need for these project billing features. With this release, we’re offering the ability to hide this functionality for all your users, right from the Features page in the Company Preferences area of Tallie Settings.

Tallie Expense Report Software Billable Feature Controller

Integrations Performance

Tallie’s best in class direct integrations with QuickBooks, QuickBooks Online, Bill.com, Intacct and Xero are constantly being tuned and improved. Plus, our recently released scheduled file data transfer integrations for other accounting and practice management systems are getting regular improvements as well. Here are a few of the enhancements we offer with this release:

Tallie Expense Report Software Syncs with Bill.com and QuickBooks Online

Certified Support for Bill.com’s Sync 2.0 for QuickBooks Online
Tallie is the only expense report software offering simultaneous integration with both Bill.com and an accounting system. Bill.com recently upgraded their support for QuickBooks Online, and this release guarantees simultaneous support for customers using the Sync 2.0 between Bill.com and QuickBooks Online. Plus, we’re now ensuring that Tallie always syncs with both QuickBooks Online and Bill.com, even if your Tallie environment is configured to export only to Bill.com.

Fewer Sync Errors
Tallie uses sync errors to communicate when issues need to be addressed in communicating with other systems, but sometimes the sync errors can be extra unnecessary information. We’ve suppressed some of these basic errors so you can enjoy Tallie without the extra chatter.

Improved Processing of Massive Files
We have a few customers who use our file data transfer integration to send tens of thousands of projects to Tallie from their practice management systems. We’ve updated how we work through those files to get better performance than before.

Feature Improvements

In addition, we made a couple of additional functional improvements to Tallie. They include:

  • More improvements were made to the duplicate detection algorithm to make it more accurate
  • We added two new currencies: Vietnamese Dong and Mozambican Meticals
  • We’ve begun a process to help resolve issues with duplicated transactions delivered to Tallie from credit card bank transaction feeds. This release should provide some improvement, with more to come.

Bug Fixes

There were also quite a few small issues resolved in this release. They include:

  • Custom payment memo is applied to item-mapped credit card transactions in Xero, QuickBooks Online and QuickBooks Desktop
  • When exporting paid bills to BIll.com, the invoice date now always matches the process date
  • Some customers reported issues in viewing HTML receipts after export to Bill.com. We’ve resolved that issue.
  • Our usage graph that we provide in the Billing area to track your usage to date showed a false spike half way through last month. We’ve resolved that issue as well.

We love to hear from you — even if it’s just to say hi. Let us know how these updates to our expense report software help your team. Reach out to our Product Expert team at support@usetallie.com or by calling 888-874-1118 Ext 2.

Time to upgrade! Tallie Expense Report App v3.3 Released for Android & iOS

Celebrate the season with updated Tallie apps just in time for the holidays! Our new expense report app for Android and iOS features enhanced stability in low connectivity environments, manual select-to-merge features and the option to share to Tallie from your camera library. Go ahead and upgrade your app*, you deserve it.

*Depending on your operating system there may be a delay in availability, so please be on the look out over the next week or so.

Select-to-Merge Expenses in the App

Let’s say you’ve got a receipt and a matching credit card charge that you would like to merge into one expense? Simply select both expenses by tapping on the circular icon on the left side of the screen, then tap to merge. In the iOS app, this option will appear on the bottom of your screen. In the Android app, it will either appear in the header or the overflow menu, depending on your screen width.

Select to merge functionality in the Tallie expense report app for iOS

Selecting more than one expense in the iOS app causes the expense functions to appear on the bottom of the screen. These include, select all, merge, move to report, and delete.

 

Select to merge in the Tallie expense report app for Android

In narrower Android screens, the merge function appears in the overflow menu.

 

Share Images to the Tallie Expense Report App

We’ve configured Tallie to work with the share functions of both iOS and Android camera libraries. On both iOS and Android it’s quick and easy to access the camera from the lock screen. Now, you can take receipt photos with your basic phone or tablet camera as you incur them, then batch import them into Tallie using the share functionality.

Share to Tallie from your iPhone or iPad…

Share receipts from the iOS camera to the Tallie Expense Report App

From your camera roll, select multiple images, tap the Tallie icon, then select the destination expense report.

Share to Tallie from your Android phone or tablet…

Share receipts from your Android camera to the Tallie Expense Report App

From your camera library, select your images, then tap the share icon. Select Tallie from the app list, then select the destination expense report.

Bug fixes!

Each time you update your apps you might notice notes from developers that tell you about bug fixes. What do we mean by that? Well, a bug is an issue with a piece of software that prevents the software from completing an intended function. We conduct extensive testing here at Tallie before we release updates to our expense report software and expense report apps, but thanks to some wonderful feedback from our customers, we’ve found a few ways that we can improve. Here’s a high level list of the bugs we fixed with this update:

  • Reliability and stability of the apps has been greatly improved when connectivity is low
  • Some customers experienced long delay in loading the app
  • Some customers experienced long delays in searching for results in project lists
  • Some customers who used long names for their project, department, location, class or customer lists were not able to see the full name

Happy holidays from Tallie!

We love your feedback, because it helps us improve the experience for everyone. Let us know how these updates to our expense report app experience help your workflow. Reach out to our Product Expert team at support@usetallie.com or by calling 888-874-1118 Ext 2.

Petty Cash & Out of Pocket Expenses: Finding the Right Solution for Reimbursable Expenses

Businesses have a number of expense management options. Many involve manual processes, and can put employees in a compromising situation. What’s the best choice for a business that wants to maximize efficiency while minimizing work?

Option 1: Paying expenses out of pocket.

Who it hurts: Mid-level employees, new hires, recent graduates.

Unlike executives, mid- and entry-level employees typically don’t have access to corporate credit cards. Instead, they are often asked to pay out of pocket. While this may not be a problem for high-earners, it can create difficulty for many employees, such as recent grads. In today’s economy, many workers struggle with debt, and simply cannot afford to pay for an entire business trip upfront. They may be unable or unwilling to float major charges on their personal credit cards, and resent being asked to do so.

Option 2: Cash advances.

Who it hurts: Accountants and administrators.

Offering a cash advance to your employees will keep them from having to front their own money. Unfortunately, cash advances are also incredibly time consuming. The documentation and reporting process requires tedious, manual work from your accountants. This is particularly frustrating in busy departments bogged down by numerous requests, especially during complicated projects.

Option 3: Petty cash.

Who it hurts: Accountants and administrators.

Some businesses keep a petty cash drawer as an alternative to their check-writing system. While this does cut down on paperwork, petty cash expenses are hard to accurately track. Without a written record, you won’t know how much of the total amount was actually spent on business. Not to mention, petty cash is impractical for major expenses like airfare. As with cash advances, if the actual expense ends up being more than the cash provided, your employee may be forced to go out of pocket after all.

Is there a better solution?

PEX Card is a prepaid business card that replaces the need for cash advances or petty cash. Cards are kept at a zero balance so you can allocate or remove funds as necessary–all with the click of a button. All purchases appear immediately within Tallie so you can authorize and monitor employee spending in real-time.

Meanwhile, Tallie automates expense management from front to back. Our smart features automatically flag potential errors, duplicates, and policy violations. Tallie even learns to auto-categorize your expenses over time.

To compare:

Tallie-expense-reports-pex-card-value-chart

Want to learn more about Tallie’s integration with PEX Card?  If you have any questions or comments, feel free to reach out to our Product Expert team at support@usetallie.com or by calling 888-874-1118 Ext 2.

Tallie & Intacct Webinar: Automating Expense Reports, Cloud Accounting & Zero-Click, Real-Time Integration

The future is coming, and it’s automation. Are you ready? You know that automating your expense reports with Tallie is a simple way to save time and money. Now, Intacct and Tallie have partnered to form the ideal accounting system for businesses that want to stay relevant well into the future.

Our very own Jules Carmen and Justin O’Neill gave a webinar demonstrating Tallie’s powerful, zero-click, real-time integration with Intacct. Topics included:

• Can cloud accounting really create revenue opportunities?
• Increasing ROI by the thousands every hour.
• How automating expense reports can save your firm money.
• The future of the accounting industry, and the right tools and best practices to thrive.

Want to see for yourself? Feel free to check out the webinar recording below:

VIEW OR DOWNLOAD THE SLIDES:

Try Tallie’s award-winning expense management software FREE for 14 days – no credit card or commitment required. Or, schedule your free Tallie product demo now.

6 Ways to Save on Business Travel Expenses

Whether you’re flying out to meet with a client or present at a conference, traveling for business can be as costly as it is necessary. Sure, you’ve examined past expense reports and set aside a budget–but how else can you avoid unnecessary costs? With a little forethought and these six tips, you can shave hundreds of dollars off of your next business trip.

Tallie-Expense-Reports-Business-Travel-Expenses

1. Book early–but not too early.

When searching for the best time to purchase a plane ticket, you’ll find a wide range of advice. However, a 2013 study by CheapAir analyzed over 4 million trips in the hopes of settling the debate once and for all. They found that booking “54 days in advance” will give you the lowest rate, with the next best opportunity anywhere between 29 and 104 days before your trip. However, the rate at which prices soar and decline will vary based on your destination, the number of tickets already sold, and the current/projected price of oil. International flights, for example, should be booked much earlier than 54 days.

The best strategy by far is to start taking note of ticket prices as soon as possible. If you’re still well outside the 54 day mark, keep an eye out for deals or packages in the months leading up to your trip. When in doubt, book earlier rather than later–the CheapAir study also debunks the persistent rumor that waiting until 24 hours before the flight takes off will mean big last-minute savings. In fact, the average difference between the cheapest rate and the worst was $312! If you find yourself having to fly out on short notice, know that ticket prices steadily increase over the final 14 days–if you don’t have the luxury of strategizing, just book as soon as you can.

2. Be open-minded about your travel days.

When you travel can have just as big an impact on cost as where you go and for how long. To save money, most people opt to limit the time they’re away from home. But depending on hotel and meal prices, you may find it’s actually less expensive to stay an extra night. How? Remember that hotel and airfare rates fluctuate based on season, fuel prices, and the number of guests. Weekday flights, particularly Tuesdays and Wednesdays, can be significantly cheaper than popular travel days like Saturdays and Sundays. If your schedule is flexible, look for the best combination of travel and hotel fees. This is especially true of promotional deals from booking services–don’t assume that a combined flight and hotel package for 4 nights will always cost more than separate bookings for 2-3.

That being said, don’t rely on pre-made packages without investigating all of your other options. Consider flying to alternate airports or mixing-and-matching your airlines. For example, flying United out of SFO, then taking American Airlines to OAK on your return trip might cost less than a roundtrip ticket with either.

3. Don’t pay for internet.

These days, internet access is essentially mandatory for those looking to work while traveling. But Hotel WiFi can be steep and unreliable, especially during a crowded conference. If using the internet is integral to your business trip, consider it an incentive to save even more money on cheaper lodging: a recent study shows that more “budget-friendly” hotels like Quality, Ramada, and Best Western tend to have fast, free WiFi. Meanwhile, the Hiltons and Marriotts, in addition to being more expensive, are more likely to charge for internet access.

Stuck somewhere without WiFi? Remember that most smart phones can also be used as a mobile hotspot. Just make sure your mobile plan offers enough data to perform any necessary e-mailing, document sharing, and social media while you’re away–otherwise you’ll be paying for overage fees!

4. Traveling abroad? Plan ahead to avoid roaming charges.

If your business requires you to spend a lot of time overseas, you’ll want to find a mobile plan with flexible international rates. Depending on how often you travel abroad, this could mean the ability to activate international coverage only on the months or days of your trip. Some carriers like T-Mobile even allow unlimited data and texting all over the world at no additional charge.

Using a temporary prepaid SIM card will keep costs low, but it won’t be tied to your current mobile number. However, this is only an option for unlocked GSM devices, which disqualifies a great deal of phones sold in the US. If you want to completely avoid roaming voice or data fees, take advantage of free VOIP and messaging services via WiFi. Regardless of your mobile or data plan, this is the safest method of communicating with colleagues and loved ones without unexpected charges.

5. When browsing hotels, look at more than the price of your room.

Finding the right hotel is an excellent way to save on multiple travel expenses with a single decision. Are you the kind of person who needs more than a stale muffin to get through a conference? In addition to free (or cheap) WiFi, choose a hotel with free breakfast. Not all free breakfasts are pitiful–look around until you find a full and satisfying breakfast bar. It’s a simple solution, but replacing ⅓ of each day’s meals with free food adds up fast. And don’t we all want to minimize the fast food receipts on our expense reports?

Depending on the popularity of the venue, you may also want to find lodging close enough to your destination that you won’t need a car or cab. Just make sure to weigh the cost of transportation against the increased cost of a desirable hotel.

6. Teleconference.

Don’t scoff! With soaring ticket prices, busy schedules, and the convenience of Google Hangouts, some businesses are opting out of business travel altogether. There’s no better way to cut back on travel expenses than to eliminate all unnecessary road trips and airfare. While services like Google Hangouts and Skype are great for meetings, there has also been a rise in online or virtual conferences. Worried you won’t be able to network? One of the beauties of livestreamed panels like those at Ensuring Success is the ability to freely engage with colleagues over social media. You might find you connect with peers and vendors you normally wouldn’t have encountered in person.

Be sure to sit down with your team to discuss which conferences require your physical presence, and which can be “attended” from afar. Sometimes embracing video chat even means more effective meetings with clients and coworkers alike.

No matter what your travel expenses, Tallie will save you countless hours by automating your expense reports. Try it for yourself with a 14-day free trial – no credit card, no obligation. Need a helping hand? Our experts can optimize Tallie for your accounting system with a free 1-on-1 product demo. Happy trails!