September 29 2022, Kimpton Fitzroy London
Friday 30 September 2022, JW Marriott Grosvenor
21 November 2022, Hilton London Metropole
The majority of business travellers in the UK and France have experienced some kind of travel disruption during recent trips, according to a survey by TMC Egencia.
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Egencia, which is now part of American Express Global Business Travel (GBT), found that 73 per cent of respondents had been impacted by disruption to their travel plans this summer, including cancellations and delays. The survey polled 2,250 frequent business travellers in the UK, France and the US.
More than two-thirds (69 per cent) of corporate travellers thought they would be likely to experience disruption if they travelled today, with this number increasing to 76 per cent for UK travellers.
These experiences and worries about future disruption have led to 85 per cent of business travellers taking measures to try to mitigate potential problems, such as booking an early morning flight (46 per cent) or avoiding certain airlines and airports (40 per cent).
But the high level of disruption is having an impact on employees’ willingness to travel, with nearly half of those surveyed (49 per cent) saying they preferred to cancel their trip if disruption occurs to their planned itinerary.
More encouragingly, virtually all travellers (94 per cent) saw the benefits of being back on the road following the Covid-19 pandemic, with face-to-face collaboration being the top benefit (30 per cent) of travel.
Egencia’s survey also found that 74 per cent of travellers were now more likely to use digital tools, including apps and “virtual” agents, to reorganise disrupted trips.
Having access to real-time updates was seen as the most important benefit to using digital tools to manage trip changes (43 per cent). The vast majority (96 per cent) agreed that technology improved trip management.
More automation was also popular with many travellers, with 34 per cent calling for predictive flight alerts and 28 per cent looking for the automatic rebooking of flights when things go wrong.
Egencia’s president Mark Hollyhead added: “Business travellers are increasingly concerned about experiencing problems on the road and getting the support they need. Whatever the purpose for a trip, if you make the decision to travel it’s an investment in time.
“We want to be there for our customers and provide the technology and service to manage disruptions as seamlessly as possible.”
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