Economic instability affects both businesses who plan to cut back on travel spending and Americans who choose not to travel because they can't afford to look like they're slacking
Source: Los Angeles Times
Author: Hugo Martin
After a strong surge over the last two years, business travel in the U.S. is expected to grow more slowly through the end of the year, largely because of economic uncertainty in Europe.
The slowdown in travel spending was forecast last week in a report by the Global Business Travel Assn., a trade group for travel managers. The group also cited continuing worries about the U.S. economy, low job growth, falling consumer confidence and slowing corporate profits.
The group predicted spending on business travel this year will jump 2.2% over last year, reaching $256.5 billion, compared with a previous forecast that the spending would grow 3.6% in 2012.
“In a challenging economy, companies may look to cut their travel spending,” said Michael W. McCormick, executive director of the association. “But GBTA research shows that that is the exact opposite of what they should be doing.”
He added that cutting travel spending would hurt a company’s bottom line and “make a bad economic situation significantly worse due to business travel’s impact on the overall economy.”
Business travel spending surged back after the economic downturn, jumping 5.1% in 2010 and 7.2% in 2011, according to the association.
The group predicts a rebound in travel spending next year, up 4.7% to $268.5 billion, but that was with the assumption that Europe’s economic woes do not worsen.
More adults to work during summer vacation
With more Americans worried about the direction of the economy, a new survey found that 52% of employed adults planned to put in some work during their summer vacation this year.
That is up from 46% of employed Americans who said in a similar survey last year that they worked through their vacation.
The latest survey was conducted by Harris Interactive on behalf of TeamViewer, a producer of remote control and online meetings software. It also found 30% of Americans surveyed said they planned to read work-related emails and 23% planned to take work-related phone calls while on vacation.
The survey further found that employed men were more likely to say they would work during summer vacation than women (56% for men compared with 47% for women). Also, 39% of workers in the West said they would read work-related emails on vacation, compared with 25% of those living in the South.
Subscribe to Skift Pro
Subscribe to Skift Pro to get unlimited access to stories like these ($30/month)Subscribe Now
Europe’s Hotels Will Wait Until at Least 2025 for Full Return of International Business Guests
Be wary of everybody’s favorite word at the moment: pent-up demand. Your typical leisure traveler can book a trip and pack their bag in minutes, but companies will keep employees on a tight leash for years to come.
Matthew Parsons, Skift | 2 weeks ago
What Travel CEOs Are Predicting About the Permanent Return of Business Travel
It’s hard to get a true sense of what future business travel demand will look like until international borders reopen and people can return to the office. But it is time to temper the optimism on any significant recovery happening by the end of the year. CEOs seem to finally get this.
Cameron Sperance, Skift | 3 weeks ago
Las Vegas Emerging This Fall as the Hottest Corporate Travel Destination Despite Variant Worries
The city is in tune with the pandemic protocol: after the tourists, next come the business travelers. Las Vegas is edging towards recovery, but Delta variant concerns may spoil the party yet.
Matthew Parsons, Skift | 3 weeks ago