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Update on booking travel: temporary arrangements extended

22 Sep 2022

What you need to know if you are responsible for booking UK and international travel

Dear colleagues,

In June we introduced alternative booking streams reflecting the many issues colleagues encountered when trying to book through Key Travel earlier this year. As acknowledged in the June communication, the issues facing Key Travel were industry-wide such as airline cancellation and amendments, baggage handling problems plus staff shortages. The international travel issues have started to abate, although UK rail disruptions remain.

We have gathered user feedback from across our University during August and service level data from the supplier. We are pleased to report that this demonstrates that Key Travel service levels have significantly improved over the summer, with notably fewer complaints coming through to the Travel Helpdesk. There have been some system glitches recently with the online booking tool but these have been due to data feed issues from either ourselves or product providers, which is not always easy for Key Travel to address quickly.

It is appreciated the drop-off in service levels from Key Travel earlier this year and recent system performance issues have lowered user confidence in their service. Consequently we will continue for now with the flexible approach, albeit slightly amended:

  • Key Travel remain our preferred supplier. Please try to book through Key Travel in the first instance.
  • If unable to connect with Key Travel for whatever reason, then try Diversity Travel.
  • If neither the above can assist then as a last resort use the department credit card (or FTCC if you have one) to book your travel but do ensure you comply with any risk assessment requirements.

The above flexible approach will be reviewed again at the end of October.

We will continue to monitor Key Travel's performance and work with them to improve service delivery. In order to continue to monitor the travel service and support continuous improvement, we will also restart the Key Travel User Group. If you would like to be part of the user group to ensure your area’s views and experiences are heard, please contact Mark Gilmore (mark.gilmore@manchester.ac.uk).

Kind regards,

Carol Prokopyszyn

Chief Financial Officer

Further information: