Orbitz for Business Year-End Survey shows business travelers will be more resourceful. For ‘more resourceful’ read ‘spend less money.’
The big picture for 2008 reveals that cost controls may have been a more significant trend than policies focused on cutting back corporate travel. While this is an international survey it has strong significance for China where the airline business is hurting and the luxury hotel business could do with a boost.
Nearly three-fourths — 71% — of business travelers say they’ve traveled more or about the same in 2008 as they did a year ago.
An overwhelming majority — 79% — of travelers say they’ve felt pressure to curb their travel expenses during the course of 2008.
Dean Sivley, senior vice president and COO, Orbitz for Business said, ‘In 2008, our survey revealed an emerging trend of business travelers changing their behaviors in light of the recession, traveling differently by becoming more cost conscious. We can expect corporate travel managers to exert continued pressure on employees with travel policies focused on cost savings, like booking flights farther in advance, staying in lower class hotels and renting fuel efficient vehicles.’
In response to airline capacity cuts, many of which have been implemented in the latter half of 2008, the report revealed the following changes in traveler behavior:
47% now book further in advance whenever possible
43% are now more price conscious and concerned about having to pay higher airfares
17% say their companies have taken measures to discourage last-minute bookings
11% are choosing to drive to their destination more frequently rather than fly
Looking ahead to 2009, a majority of business travelers surveyed, 55%, say they are planning to travel as much or more than they did in 2008.
Source: Hospitality Net