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From large multinational corporations to smaller start-up businesses, companies across the world often choose meaningful incentive travel experiences over financial rewards for their staff.

Of course, organizing an all-inclusive incentive travel experience for your best performing staff does involve significantly more planning and effort than simply handing out bonuses every year, but the return is priceless. Corporate incentive trips are a great way to show your team members that you care and recognize their hard work, making them feel appreciated and encouraging them to simply have a good time.

What is Incentive Travel All About?

Incentive trips come in many different forms, and corporate incentive programmes truly leave space for an event planner’s creativity to flourish when compared to more formal meetings and conferences. It’s no wonder that companies have been using incentive trips as a way to motivate and reward their employees and business associates for their contributions for decades!

There are many ways to implement incentives into a company’s rewards programme. Most often, incentive trips are used as a reward for the best-performing team members or groups who have consistently smashed their targets throughout the year. They can also be used, however, as a team-building initiative, encouraging guests to get to know colleagues in a more comfortable environment. Sometimes, no reason is needed other than the desire to spend quality time with your team and say ‘thank you!’.

Corporate Incentive Travel Benefits

“Incentive travel offers an opportunity for teams to explore new places with their colleagues, experience events that they wouldn’t usually attend, and get to know people within their company on a whole new level.”

What are the Benefits of Incentive Travel?

In every industry, incentives are an effective tool to motivate your team to reach their quarterly and annual targets. In order to achieve your desired results, the incentive you implement would need to be something universally desirable – which is why a well-planned trip is an ideal solution. Who doesn’t like a holiday?

Incentive travel offers an opportunity for teams to explore new places with their colleagues, experience events that they wouldn’t usually attend, and get to know people within their company on a whole new level. This type of travel encourages good relationships among employees, whether they’re celebrating their achievements or working on reaching their next targets!

Factors to Consider when Planning an Incentive Trip

Planning corporate events can be complicated, especially when it involves international travel. This is where Destination Management Companies come in – whatever locations you choose, you should be able to find a handful of DMCs who possess all the knowledge and connections you need to plan a truly spectacular incentive trip that your team will be talking about for years! When it comes to incentive travel, it’s all about creating meaningful experiences… so working hand-in-hand with locals will definitely create unforgettable moments in your chosen destination that would be difficult to discover single-handedly.

Coastal Trekking Activity in Malta
Image: Trek along the coastal routes and enjoy stunning views of the Mediterranean

Choosing a Destination for your Incentive Trip

Speaking of which, your chosen destination is undoubtedly the most important aspect of your incentive trip… so where do you begin?

Depending on the size of your incentive travel group, finding a destination that ticks all the right boxes for every traveller is no easy feat. Some people love adventure holidays, while others want to lay on a beach all day. So, our best piece of advice would be to offer a destination with a great climate (Mediterranean – we’re looking at you!), a variety of activities to suit different tastes (Farm to Fork cooking class? Coastal Trekking? Leave it up to your guests!), and an element of surprise – perhaps somewhere that people would not have thought of travelling to on their own before!

The Maltese Islands provide all three – with great weather throughout most of the year, award-winning restaurants and entertainment establishments, 5-star and all-inclusive hotel options, a rich history, great outdoor activities and lots of cultural gems to discover. Located in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, Malta is also easily reachable by plane from any major European Airport, making it an ideal choice even if your team are travelling from multiple locations!

Valletta Streets in Malta
Image: Explore the streets of Valletta, Malta’s UNESCO World Heritage City

If you’re considering a European destination for your next incentive trip, Valletta – the ‘Gem of the Mediterranean’ should definitely be on your list. As the island’s capital city, Valletta’s long history is built into its majestic fortified walls, giving visitors a truly immersive experience as they walk through the city’s cobblestoned streets. With several Michelin-star restaurants, boutique hotels, bustling cafés, museums and the world-renowned St.Paul’s Co-Cathedral situated in the city, Valletta is truly a bucket-list destination that every visitor falls in love with.

After shortlisting destinations that meet your requirements, you can reach out to DMCs in each location for a tailor-made programme to suit your specific needs. Look out for unique venues and activities mentioned within each programme – if it impresses you, it’s bound to be a hit among your team too!

Managing Budgets for Corporate Incentive Travel

A complimentary trip for your team may sound like a huge investment, but, in reality, it can be much more affordable – and meaningful – than financial rewards. Obviously, this depends on the location you choose and the DMC you work with (the best ones know where to get the best deals!). However, don’t mistake affordable options for low-quality. Be sure to work with a trusted DMC (look for a local seal of approval) who can guide you to the restaurants, venues, accommodation and activities that provide excellent value for money. Otherwise, your staff may end up returning home feeling more drained than invigorated.

Tap into Local Knowledge through a Destination Management Company

While we’re all pleased to be seeing travel restrictions lifting across many regions, planning a corporate incentive trip will require you to be up to date with the destination country’s regulations to avoid any unforeseen dilemmas. Partnering with a local DMC will help you ensure that your trip runs smoothly from start to finish. A reliable DMC will take care of all bookings, transfers, activity coordination, liaising with restaurants, and creating memorable moments that both you and your team will enjoy.

Looking for Inspiration for your next Corporate Travel Incentive?

At Alpine Sterling DMC, we help companies bring their ideas to life in the most creative and unexpected ways possible. The Maltese Islands are our home, and we’re always exploring new ways to share stunning moments with corporate travellers. We’re here to share our insider knowledge with you and help you experience the best of the Maltese Islands.

Get in touch with a member of our team today to start creating your perfect corporate incentive travel programme!

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