Business Travel Faces Growing Challenges| MENAFN.COM

Wednesday, 10 August 2022 04:35 GMT

Business Travel Faces Growing Challenges


(MENAFN- Bangladesh Monitor)

While global business travel remains strong, with companies allowing domestic and international travel and suppliers seeing increased travel bookings, the business travel segment is still facing a number of challenges – and not just COVID-19.

According to the Global Business Travel Association's June 2022 Business Travel Recovery Poll, current affairs and economic concerns are having a significant impact on travel programs, while many companies are rethinking their policies for employees who aren't quite ready to travel.
For travel buyers, the top issues affecting their programs include government policies/restrictions (43%), followed by COVID infection rates (38%) and staffing shortages (33%), as well as supply chain bottlenecks (30%), inflation (28%) and oil prices (27%).
Similarly, suppliers cite staffing shortages (51%), inflation (37%), government restrictions (36%) and COVID infection rates and variants (36%) as top the challenges they face. Additionally, suppliers are concerned about oil prices (33%), strength of the economy/risk of recession (33%) and increased wage demands (31%).
But the outlook isn't gloomy: More than four in five travel suppliers (88%) report feeling more optimistic compared to a month ago. Few (4%) say they feel more pessimistic about the path to recovery.
Bookings continue to rebound, too, with most suppliers and TMCs (84%) reporting their bookings have increased compared to the previous month.
Nine in 10 (88%) of GBTA buyer and procurement members feel their employees are“willing” or“very willing” to travel for business in the current environment, while a select few (3%) are either unsure or don't feel their employees are currently willing to travel for business (1%).
Why Does the Business Travel Experience Matter?
Business travel can have a considerable impact on employee satisfaction and retention as more than three-quarters (79 percent) of business travelers say their business travel experience impacts their overall job satisfaction at least somewhat. This is especially true among Millennials (88 percent). Business travel not only influences how employees feel about their current company, it can also influence whether they take a job in the first place. Nearly three in five (59 percent) indicate a company's travel policy is an important factor when considering a potential new employer. Additionally, the vast majority of travelers (84 percent) say the quality of their business travel experience impacts their business results at least somewhat.
Improving the Traveler Experience
When asked what perks or amenities impact their business travel experience the most, convenient and comfortable hotels topped the list for business travelers followed by non-stop flights, booking flexibility and paid time off for long trips. Looking at optional purchases business travelers make on their own to improve their experience is also telling. These include hotel high-speed internet, airplane/train Wi-Fi, seat upgrades and early boarding. Travelers most often mention that these purchases help them improve their productivity on the road.
Technology also makes an important contribution to business traveler satisfaction, enabling a more efficient travel process. Business travelers indicated a variety of technological amenities would enhance their travel experience with automated destination info, mobile expense reporting, itinerary management apps, safety tracking app and mobile payment topping the list. Millennials and Gen-Xers are far more likely than Baby Boomers to mention mobile payment. Mobile expense reporting and safety apps also top the list for the younger groups as well.

Around the Globe
The GBTA Foundation, in partnership with Sabre, also surveyed business travelers in Asia Pacific, Europe and Latin America. While there are many similarities among business travelers around the world, there are also several key differences.

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