NBTA Predicts Cost Cutting Measures to Continue Into 2009 As a Result of Economic Slowdown
Rising Costs and Sluggish Travel Industry Growth to Significantly Impact Business Travel
ALEXANDRIA, Va. -- The National Business Travel Association (NBTA) today released its 2009 Business Travel Overview & Cost Forecast predicting increases in business travel costs and slower than usual travel industry growth. According to the study, travel managers project an increase of 5 to 8 percent for business travel costs in the coming year. Additionally, as shifting market forces equalize with new levels of supply and demand for travel services, the number of business trips will continue to expand but at a slower pace than the annual growth from 2004 through 2007.
NBTA’s research predicts that travel managers will amplify their cost-containment strategies in 2009 by implementing or expanding a number of measures, including: reducing non-essential travel; enforcing new travel policy mandates; and implementing tools like eFolio hotel data, which enables automated reporting of hotel spending information in order to streamline expense reporting and flag out-of-policy spending.
In addition to trends in travel management and projections for corporate travel expenditures, the comprehensive forecast predicts rate changes for air travel, hotels, and car rentals:
- In 2009, published airfares are expected to increase 7-10 percent over 2008. This year-over-year change is more difficult to project this year for several reasons: changes in airlines’ ancillary fees could add up to 5 percent to airfares, rapid fluctuations in oil prices impact airline pricing, and airline pricing strategies are designed to react quickly to changes in demand.
- Hotel rates are projected to increase only 1-4 percent, less than increases seen in recent years.
- NBTA predicts nominal car rental rate increases of 1-3 percent.
“NBTA’s 2009 forecast supports travel management and c-level leadership with comprehensive insight about the changing travel landscape,” added NBTA executive director and COO Bill Connors, CTC. “Our research shows just how much the outlook varies across companies. That’s exactly why companies are turning to their travel managers to implement the best strategy to meet the challenges that lie ahead. Those companies who manage travel effectively in the coming year will clearly be better positioned than their competitors who don’t.”
To develop the 2009 Business Travel Forecast, NBTA fielded an online survey of U.S.-based travel buyer members from September 15 to October 21, 2008, as well as analyzed data from earlier NBTA surveys and from the Bureau of Transportation Statistics, IATA, Smith Travel Research and other sources. The complete 2009 Business Travel Forecast is available to NBTA members at . Non-members interested in the report should email firstname.lastname@example.org, while members of the media can contact email@example.com.
The National Business Travel Association (NBTA) is the world’s premier business travel and corporate meetings organization. NBTA and its regional affiliates – NBTA Asia Pacific, NBTA Canada, NBTA Mexico, and NBTA USA – serve a network of more than 15,000 business travel professionals around the globe with industry-leading events, networking, education & professional development, research, news & information, and advocacy. NBTA members, numbering more than 4,000 in 30 nations, are corporate and government travel and meetings managers, as well as travel service providers. They collectively manage and direct more than US$200 billion of global business travel and meetings expenditures annually on behalf of more than 10 million business travelers within their organizations. For more information, visit .
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