Business travel industry facing challenges outside of Covid: Travel Weekly

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.

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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%).

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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%).

Source: PhocusWire

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