Is Passive Tracking Good Enough?


Travel tracking is the process of monitoring the movements of your travellers. There are two types of tracking available out there today: passive and active. There are fundamental differences between the two and knowing the differences will help you decide on the best service for you and your company. 

Passive tracking is the more rudimentary of the two solutions. As the name suggests, passive tracking does not track your employees in real time i.e. you will not be able to follow every last move of the person you are tracking. You can simply keep a check on where your travellers are supposed to be at any given day or time. For example, if James was traveling to Moscow on business on a British Airways flight, the flight timings would be used to presume that James has landed in Moscow. This form of tracking is good for those travellers who do not travel to high risk areas and a rough knowledge about their whereabouts is enough to fulfil compliance mandates.  

Active tracking basically interacts with traveler to get an accurate understanding of his location. One form of active tracking is reaching out to the traveler via text messages that he gets when he lands in destination. This method depends on responses from the travellers and is not completely automated.  A fully automated active tracking system on the other hand uses GPS data from the travellers to pin point the exact location at any given time. Lets take James and his trip to Moscow on British Airways. James uses the travel tracking software to sync his flights and other transportation details just as he did for Passive tracking. However, in this case, you can track him all the way to the airport and ensure he has reached safely and similarly once he lands, you know as soon as he is off the flight. While these basic uses sound unnecessary in everyday travel, active travel tracking becomes extremely effective when the traveler is in an unstable situation and/or country. If a riot were to break out in Moscow, you would be able to track James and be assured that he is in a safe place (like his hotel, or the office).  

Fully automated active tracking is best with a GPS tracking device, options to track using the travelers phone are also available.  

So is Passive tracking good enough? Both passive and active tracking services come at a cost. Naturally the latter is more expensive but this expense is highly justified. Deciding which one is best for your business is a personal choice, however, we at TrackBasic can help you do that along with providing the best online travel tracking tool available in the market today. 

What is Travel Tracking?

Travel tracking or itinerary tracking is the process of monitoring the movement of travellers. The systems that perform these services are generally referred to as travel trackers.  


Passive Travel Trackers 
The most common type of travel tracker is the passive travel tracker. A passive travel tracker imports the itineraries from the booking engines or GDSs and makes the data available to travel or security managers. They can only tell you where your employees are supposed to be, not where they actually are. This reduces both the accuracy and completeness of the data, making the systems less reliable than automated travel trackers. 
Active Travel Trackers 
Active travel trackers are semi or fully automated tracking systems. They import itineraries from the GDSs in the same way as the passive travel trackers, but that is where the similarities end. Active travel trackers will then monitor the itineraries until they are completed, ensuring that the traveller has actually made it to the destination. This ensures data completeness and data accuracy, which is vital when incidents occur.  

Active travel tracking involves the system interacting with the travellers by sending texts to respond to - a sign of life system. Fully automated active trackers on the other hand are the next generation of travel trackers that use GPS data to track travellers and thereby fully automating the process.

Both forms of active tracking reduce the interaction required by travellers and support personnel to the bare minimum, ensuring more complete and accurate data than passive systems, while minimising the burden on travellers and support staff. Travel activity is automatically processed and logged, and incidents are relayed to support staff immediately and automatically. 

Voyage Manager, the parent company of TrackBasic, is the only fully automated travel tracker on the market and now you can get the same solutions with TrackBasic!