Posts Tagged "ETS2"

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The E-Travel Service

»Posted by on Dec 13, 2014 in Electronic Travel Systems | 0 comments

The Federal Travel Regulations (FTR) mandated all government agencies utilize a Travel Management System (TMS) in 2001.  The introduction of electronic travel systems for civilian government agencies was initiated in 2002 by the General Services Administration (GSA) to create an end-to-end travel service to connect travel authorizations, reservations, and the voucher process.  It was initially called the e-Travel Project; and evolved into the present E-Gov Travel Service (ETS). Federal travelers are required to use a Travel Management Service (TMS) and their ETS. In 2003 the Federal Travel Regulations (FTR) were published to state in Chapter 301-50:3 that travelers must use the ETS once it becomes available through their TMS.  However, for reasons beyond my...

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Transparency in Federal Travel

»Posted by on Dec 8, 2014 in Business Practices, Contracting for Travel Services, Payment Methods, Travel Professional Resources | 0 comments

With the U.S. national deficit at its highest, Federal agencies are being tasked to reduce spending at all levels, including Federal travel budgets.  A presidential advisory team recommended a $400 million reduction in the Federal travel budget by 2015.  Federal travel spending is being more closely scrutinized by Congress, the media, and the general public than ever before.  The media and others are sponsoring websites such as junketsleuth.com in order to gather and present Government travel spend data to the public. With all of this attention focused on the Government’s travel spend, agencies are required by regulation to provide requesters with any information they may request (with a few exceptions) under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) or under...

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Government Travel: From Old School to the New “Mobile & Connected” School

»Posted by on Nov 25, 2014 in Electronic Travel Systems | 0 comments

In a very short time (years, not decades), government travel has gone from old school where travelers had to call their Travel Management Center (TMC) to book every reservation to working with first-generation on-line booking tools that may or may not have been a real time connection. These tools were not always user friendly but they lowered the agencies overall travel cost. From there we progressed to on-line booking engines designed to mimic the experience travelers had when booking personal trips on leisure web sites. These tools were developed to be in compliance with the Presidents E-Gov Initiatives to reengineer the federal government’s travel process to realize significant cost savings and improve employee productivity. E-Gov Travel Services (ETS)...

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ETS Contract

»Posted by on Oct 26, 2014 in Electronic Travel Systems, Industry Postings | 0 comments

When GSA awarded travel government contracts to only #3 ETS vendors almost ten years ago, the travel community was shaken by the government’s move to take away opportunities of  small to medium size travel agencies to take a piece of the pie.  The GSA vision for a firm fixed price, multiple awards and Indefinite Delivery/Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) was the ultimate confirmation that government will streamline the broken process of government travel starting from financial initiation of travel authorization.  Having the understanding that federal agency and the DoD travel process functions totally different, Defense Travel System responds to the needs of DoD travel and accounting requirements unlike federal agency. Both federal agency and DoD have encountered...

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Electronic Travel Service 2 (ETS2): The Next Generation

»Posted by on Sep 19, 2014 in Electronic Travel Systems | 0 comments

The General Services Administration (GSA) along with other government agencies, contractors, vendors, and the Travel Management Center (TMC) providers are already preparing for Electronic Travel Service 2 (ETS2), the next generation of the EGov Travel Service.  The current ETS contract, administered by GSA, will be expiring on November 11, 2013. E-Gov Travel is a Government-wide initiative that is mandated by the Federal Travel Regulations (FTR) for all federal travelers and is one of 24 E-Gov initiatives outlined in the President’s Management Agenda (PMA).   The E-Gov Travel vision is to deliver a unified, simplified service that delivers a cost-effective travel experience, supports excellent management and results in superior customer satisfaction. ...

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Updating System Information

»Posted by on Sep 1, 2014 in Electronic Travel Systems | 0 comments

My agency provides administrative services (i.e. accounting, human resources, procurement and travel) to other government agencies. I work in the Systems and Accounting Section of the Travel Branch.  Our agency uses an E-Gov travel system in order to process authorizations and vouchers for travelers. We have some system administration rights in the E-Gov travel system, which allows us to enter/update the data. It is very important to keep the data in the system up-to-date.  The system will perform better, if only the most current data is in the system.  I believe some agencies do not give any attention to the information after it has been entered into the system. A year ago, the owners of the E-Gov system made a request to all the agencies to review the...

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To Embed or Accommodate: That’s the Real Question

»Posted by on Sep 21, 2013 in Travel Management Centers | 0 comments

Since the mid-1980s, federal government civilian agencies have had the freedom to contract directly with commercial travel agencies for Travel Management Center (TMC) services.  These contractual relationships were typically established via GSA’s Travel Services Solutions (TSS) schedule or through full and open competitions conducted by the agencies. Beginning with the introduction of the E-Gov Travel Service (ETS) in the early 2000s, agencies were presented with the option to procure TMC services as part of the integrated solutions offered by the ETS contractors.  The TMCs offered by the ETS contractors are referred to as “Embedded TMCs” while those contracted directly by the agencies are called “Accommodated TMCs” (because the ETS vendor must...

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Small Business Utilization Goals, Challenges of Entering the Government Travel Sector for Small Travel Agencies

»Posted by on Mar 10, 2013 in Contracting for Travel Services, Travel Management Centers | 0 comments

Federal Agencies are required per contracting law to set aside 23% of their contracting funds for small and small disadvantaged businesses. If the government believes that small business is essential to this country as most of us do agree with this that small business is the backbone of our communities throughout this country. Each week I meet travel agencies that would love to get into the government travel business.  However most are discouraged before they even get started.  They hear the challenges and the difficulty of new entrants in to the market.    For our industry to thrive we must attract new travel companies and a younger generation to become interested in our industry. The federal agencies need to put substance behind the initiatives and not just...

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Reducing the Cost of Federal Air Travel

»Posted by on Nov 25, 2012 in Airlines, Contracting for Travel Services | 0 comments

The success of GSA’s contract City Pair Program (CPP) is widely acknowledged and well documented.  The CPP has now “expanded … to include 13 carriers in over 5,700 markets.”  GSA estimates that “CPP fares will provide average savings of 68% below full, commercial air fares” and that the program “is projected to provide the Federal Government cost avoidance and potential savings of $6.3 billion in fiscal year 2011.” (1)  While this number is significant on its own, it becomes even more impressive when compared to the $3.4 billion estimated cost for all federal travel in 2006. (2) In order to keep the program’s fares to a minimum, the government has mandated use of CPP fares through the Federal Travel Regulation (FTR).  While there are certain...

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