Top Three Travel Trends
The Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) Business Travel Index Outlook measures and forecasts global business travel activity across 72 countries and 44 industries. Now in its 15th consecutive year, here are the insights I found most interesting from the latest issue.
Making Money Go Further
With the cost-of-living crisis compounded by persistent inflation and rising interest rates, business travel is not immune to feeling the pinch, driving business travellers’ preferences towards economy class tickets and budget hotels. Europeans are more frugal than other regions, spending less each trip per person ($888 USD) than the global average ($1018 USD).
Making the Most of the Business Trip
The concept of 'bleisure', combining business and leisure travel, is not new. However, data suggests that this trend has been gaining momentum. Since 2019, 55% of European business travellers have reported an increase in the frequency of combining business and personal travel.
Making Business Travel More Sustainably Minded Environmentally Aware
As regulation for sustainability continues to develop in the EU, both travel managers and suppliers are actively implementing measures. 64% of travel buyers report that their company is measuring and tracking business travel emissions. Visa, through partnerships with companies like Plan A, is helping companies become more environmentally aware through this transition with corporate carbon accounting, decarbonisation, and ESG reporting services.
Changing behaviours in business travel have a significant impact on how European businesses are paying for their travel. Personal card use remains prevalent, with 25% of European business travellers using a personal card to pay for air travel. This can cause complications in managing expenses for both the employee and their company's finance manager.
On the other hand, while corporate cards seem to be a more optimal solution, encouraging usage remains a challenge. Two-thirds of business travellers are provided with a corporate card, but only a third say that their company mandates its use.
Mobile wallets are also under-utilised, with only 33% of those who uploaded their card to a mobile wallet using it for more than 20% of transactions.
This represents an opportunity for companies to make their business travel spending more efficient. Adopting corporate travel and expense solutions can increase financial flexibility, separate payments efficiently, and reduce complications in the booking flow.
If you’d like to delve deeper into these insights, you can become a GBTA member to access the full reports or access the executive summary for non-members here.
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