The 2008 Global Business Travel Forecast by American Express predicts travel costs in 2008 will rise up to 10 percent for airfares and 8...

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NEW YORK — The 2008 Global Business Travel Forecast by American Express predicts travel costs in 2008 will rise up to 10 percent for airfares and 8 percent for hotels.

Factor in the extra time spent at airport security and for departure delays, and you have all the makings of a business-travel headache.

To ease the pain and cut expenses, consider these tips from Barbara Weltman, a small-business authority.

• Teleconference. While in-person meetings can’t be beat, teleconferencing is the next big thing. It is easy to arrange, more economical and less time-consuming today than travel, and can be used to address a large number of people.

• Consider alternative transportation. An Amtrak ride, for instance, may be quicker than flying in some cases. In others, if you’re planning a business trip that would take more than four or five hours by car, fly instead of driving.

• Schedule better. Decide which destinations you have for the week ahead. List all the service calls you plan to make, then plot out your route so you’ll travel the shortest distance possible. Schedule appointments accordingly.

• Limit the scope of your business. If you can’t service distant customers without extensive, expensive travel, decide whether the extra cost is worth it. It may make more sense to seek more local customers who don’t require the same amount of business travel.