In the third part of our Travel Series, we're diving deeper into what a well-designed program should look like for optimal business results and employee or customer happiness!

So far in this blog post series, we’ve explored how travel incentives work, the benefits they offer thus far, and the most popular North American industries using them and where!

In this final blog post in our 3-part series on Travel Incentives, we're uncovering how creating a well-designed travel incentive program has the power to transform your business, helping it reach newer heights of success and growth while making a substantial impact on your employees or customers.


And in case you missed any of the blog series posts about travel incentives, here they are for you! 

How to fulfill travel incentives

Fulfillment of your incentives is one of the processes that can make or break your travel rewards program. The faster the rewards get to your recipients, the better.

If employees have to wait weeks or months, it could lead to a loss of confidence in the program and reduced engagement. Meanwhile, telling senior management about an upcoming travel incentive, then waiting weeks to send the reward, will instill confusion or even frustration in your team. 

Since rewards lose their value when given too late, it’s vital to have a solid plan for fulfilling incentives instantly as soon as you announce them. 


Trip incentives, whether domestic or international, require plenty of time for planning, but you can ensure your incentive recipient doesn’t have to wait too long for their vacation by having most of the trip’s organization done before you ever announce the reward. 

Being able to provide the specifics of the destination, activities, and excursions when you first tell your staff about the incentive will also make them more excited and motivated to chase the goals that earn them the reward.

Digital rewards

One of the ways you can introduce instant travel rewards to your incentive program is to look for digital rewards providers that offer solutions like the following:

  • Automated rewards
  • Personalization capabilities
  • App integrations
  • Bulk sending
  • Redeemable gift links

Giftbit is a tool that allows you to do all of the above and more. You can personalize your digital gift card rewards with your company logo and the recipient’s name, and the app gives you the ability to send thousands of these thoughtful gifts with a few clicks.

Bulk-sending features are particularly useful if your incentive travel program involves rewards for groups of people, such as a weekend stay at a resort for a team of 20 people. When all you need to send dozens of hotel and restaurant gift cards is a list of emails and a few seconds, you can save time for productive tasks.

Zapier and Giftbit Together


Giftbit’s reward automation features are available using the Giftbit API, through your own app, or via Zapier app integrations. Your employees or clients don’t have to wait to get the travel gift cards they earn through your program; the moment they complete the desired action, it triggers the software to send the appropriate reward. 


How to build a travel incentive program

A general incentive plan is a good starting point, but your reward strategies should fit the culture, values, and goals of your organization. You should also consider the best incentives to excite and engage your incentive recipients because their participation is the key to the success of the program. 

Your steps for creating and maintaining an incentive travel program include setting your program’s goals, getting feedback, promoting the rewards, and analyzing the results. 

Goals: group and identify them

When you’re building your travel incentive program, you should start by examining your goals for the program.

  • Who are you looking to incentivize: employees, leads, clients, upper management, or the company as a whole?
  • Are you encouraging your team to work toward a specific business objective, rewarding clients for their loyalty, or building relationships among your partners? 

If you’re using travel incentives to reach your sales objectives, you’ll also need to pinpoint specific goals that will trigger the reward for employees. Whether you’re offering incentive travel trips to a few lucky individuals or a whole team, a travel rewards program is an excellent way to get the majority of your employees working toward your organization’s objectives.

Creative ideas: ask your team!

Customizing your travel incentive program to cater to your staff, clients, or partners shows these groups that you value them enough to take the time to create something that’s directed at their interests and needs. So it can’t hurt to ask your incentive recipients what they would like to see in the incentive program. 

You could hold meetings to discuss the types of travel incentives your recipients would enjoy or send out anonymous surveys to get more honest and open answers. If you’re worried about participation in these meetings and surveys, you could even attach rewards to their attendance and responses, such as a $5 Starbucks e-gift card. 

Based on the results of your research, you can compile a list of the top rewards and keep adding to it over time. By finding out what travel incentives get your team excited, you can make sure the program you’re investing time and money in is truly motivating people and achieving your desired goals.

Grow your business with Giftbit

Expert planning: unlocking the magic

Planning an unforgettable incentive trip requires a touch of magic and meticulous attention to detail. Travel experts and planners understand the importance of extensive planning and event management before, during, and after the program. They essentially act as an extension of your company, working tirelessly to negotiate on your behalf and ensure every aspect of your trip is flawlessly executed.

But that's not all! By entrusting them with the planning process, you'll free up your staff to focus on what truly matters – building those crucial relationships with your people. Leaving the logistics and expertise to an experienced travel planner will help drive the goals of your travel incentive programs further without worry, and create team bonding, connections, and memories that will last a lifetime for your employees. 

Budget: know it. stick to it. 

You should also consider your budget as you plan for your travel incentive program.

For example, a cruise vacation can be a significant investment as far as incentives go, so the program should provide a powerful benefit to your company, such as strengthening essential partnerships or meeting crucial sales goals. Or maybe you are looking to offer a variety of different travel incentives such as community involvement, celebratory meetings & team-building, and travel and personalization experiences. 

Whichever travel incentives you choose, budget and goals should go hand-in-hand, and employee involvement in developing the program can go a long way in ensuring its success. And remember, finding a cost-effective solution to fulfill your program with ease, like Giftbit will close the loop on your well-designed travel incentive program!

Communicate and track reward progress

If you’re using an incentive program to motivate employees or partners, it will only work if your employees know about the program, the earning criteria, and the rewards you’re offering. 

It’s not enough to send out an email at the start of the program; you should have a system for keeping employees updated on its progress. For example, you might put a leaderboard on the company’s online hub, sparking your employees’ competitive natures as they try to outdo the top earners. 

Whether you’re rewarding client loyalty, motivating employees, or building bonds with senior management, it’s important to convey sufficient details about the trip in advance, such as:

  • Whether the trip dates are flexible or not
  • Handicap availability or other special accommodations
  • Whether employees can bring guests on the trip
  • Which travel expenses are covered vs. not covered
  • The exact dollar amount for gift card rewards
  • Any limitations on how many rewards employees can earn

Keeping your communication about the program on point can instill excitement in recipients and prevent disappointments that could hurt the program’s success. 


Great for recognition.

 "It's very easy to purchase credits and send gift cards. I send customers gift cards after they participate in an educational Zoom meeting. It takes me less than 60 seconds to send the gift card. The incentive drives participation in the calls, which in turn drives sales. My customers really like that they get a choice of gift card as well.." (Source: Capterra)

Emily, Strategic Initiatives Manager in US
Financial Services Software, 51–200 Employees

Analyze the results

If you don’t monitor the success of your program, your time and money commitment could be going to waste. In 2019, right before the COVID pandemic, U.S. companies spent an average of $4,260 on incentive travel rewards per person, meaning a company with 10 reward earners might have spent about $42,600 on incentives. 

To get a good return on your investment and successfully enhance your business performance, it’s essential to track the results of your travel incentive program and make adjustments to your strategies when things aren’t working as intended. 

Some of the ways you can examine your program’s progress and efficacy include analyzing meaningful key performance indicators (KPIs) at different stages of the program and conducting employee surveys about the process of earning the rewards and their satisfaction with the travel incentives. 

For example, after a reward earner goes on their trip, you could send them a short survey asking questions like these:

  • On a scale of one to 10, how do you rate your experience on the trip?
  • Out of all the activities included in the trip, which was your favorite? Least favorite?
  • If you could change one thing about how the trip was planned, what would it be?