The future of Corporate Travel Guide Download now

Blog Featured Image

8 Business Travel Trends to Elevate Corporate Travel Panning

Staying ahead of the business travel market and the latest trends in corporate travel is crucial for travel managers and business leaders alike. With the global business travel sector undergoing significant transformations and how we define corporate travel changing, understanding these shifts can empower companies to optimize corporate travel expenses and policies, enhance employee satisfaction, and maintain a competitive edge.

  1. Sustainable Business Travel Practices
  2. The Use of Technology to Streamline Travel Processes
  3. The Rise of Bleisure Travel
  4. International Travel is Growing Again
  5. Asia Is Poised to Lead Travel’s Recovery in 2024
  6. The Emergence of Super Commuting
  7. Emphasis on Traveler Well-being
  8. Business Focus on Cost-Effective Travel

8 Global Business Travel Trends of 2024

1. Sustainable Business Travel Practices 

The focus on sustainability in the business travel industry has reached an unprecedented peak, reflecting a profound shift in corporate values towards environmental stewardship and social responsibility. As the planet grapples with ecological challenges, the corporate sector is stepping up, weaving sustainability into the fabric of travel policies to meet both environmental objectives and the expectations of more employees. Skift found that 63% of companies are investing more in sustainable travel, and 80% of business travelers want more sustainable options.

Many travelers are eco-conscious professionals who prioritize sustainability, driving companies to adopt practices that reduce their carbon footprint, offset emissions, lower their environmental impact, and engage with local communities meaningfully. This transformation is not just about adhering to green practices; it’s about leading purposefully, ensuring that every business trip contributes positively to our world's ecological and social fabric.

The sustainable business travel trend is multifaceted, encompassing everything from adopting eco-friendly accommodations and transportation options to implementing comprehensive carbon offsetting programs. Moreover, sustainable tourism is gaining momentum, with businesses encouraging travelers to immerse themselves in local cultures, support local economies and travel suppliers, and partake in exceptional experiences that foster a deeper connection to the destinations they visit.

Tips to Integrate Sustainability into Corporate Travel Policies

  • Prioritize Eco-Certified Accommodations: Partner with hotels and lodging options with recognized environmental certifications, ensuring your travel footprint is minimized.
  • Adopt a Green Transportation Policy: Encourage using electric vehicles, public transportation, and other low-emission transport options for business travel.
  • Implement a Robust Carbon Offset Program: Engage with verified carbon offset projects to compensate for your travel emissions and partner with travel management companies that track carbon footprints.
  • Promote Local Engagement: Encourage employees to choose local dining, small businesses and cultural experiences that support sustainable tourism and contribute to the local economy.

The shift towards sustainable business travel is a critical step towards a more responsible and conscious corporate world.

2. The Use of Technology to Streamline Travel Processes 

Technology integration into corporate travel management has revolutionized how companies approach travel arrangements, bringing about a new era of efficiency, security, and user-friendliness. Self-service platforms, machine learning, intelligent assistants, and even virtual reality have transformed corporate travel tools, empowering business travelers and corporate travel managers everywhere to tailor travel experiences precisely to their needs.

PU_12_Header

AltoVita’s platform stands out in this digital evolution, offering flexible, secure, and meticulously vetted business travel accommodation options that cater to the nuanced demands of modern corporate travel. This technological shift simplifies the booking process and enhances the overall travel experience, making it smoother and more adaptable to the rapid changes in today’s business environment. 

Blog_Banner_4-book a demo

The benefits of integrating technology into travel management extend well beyond simplification. Real-time analytics and integrated travel management systems provide:

  • A comprehensive overview of travel activities.
  • A more effective means to controlling costs.
  • Adherence to corporate travel policies.
  • Ensuring the safety of employees on work trips

Modern B2B travel companies allow for a more strategic approach to managing corporate travel, where data-driven insights can lead to optimized travel policies and more robust negotiations with travel agencies and travel providers. AltoVita’s emphasis on security and corporate travel risk management, and its ability to accommodate last-minute changes, demonstrate the platform’s alignment with the priorities of business travel today: flexibility, reliability, and safety.

Leveraging Technology for Future-Ready Corporate Travel

  • Embrace Advanced Booking Tools: Leverage platforms like AltoVita for streamlined accommodation booking, affordable hotel rates, and secure home rentals, all aligned with company policies.
  • Implement Real-Time Analytics: Use travel management software that provides real-time data on business travel spending and trends, enabling more informed decision-making and policy adjustments.
  • Adopt AI for Personalization: Leverage AI-driven tools for personalized travel recommendations, automating routine planning tasks, and enhancing the employee self booking experience.
  • Prioritize Security in Technology Choices: Ensure that the chosen travel management platforms adhere to the highest security standards, protecting company data and traveler information.

As the corporate travel landscape continues to evolve, technology will play an increasingly vital role in shaping its future, offering opportunities for innovation and improvement from contactless payments to more sustainable travel. While corporate travel remains a different beast than leisure travel, consumers will continue to expect a booking experience similar to modern leisure platforms from Expedia Group to Airbnb.

With platforms like AltoVita leading the way, companies are well-equipped to navigate the complexities of modern business travel, ensuring their travel policies meet current demands and are prepared for tomorrow’s challenges and opportunities

3. The Rise of Bleisure Travel 

The concept of bleisure travel, blending business obligations with leisure pursuits, is rapidly transforming the corporate travel landscape as more companies accept the new reality of a hybrid work model today. This evolving trend reflects a significant shift towards creating more balanced, engaging, and enriching travel experiences for corporate travelers. By integrating leisure activities into business trips, most companies are redefining traditional travel norms and embracing policies that support a harmonious blend of work and play.

In 2022, a U.S. survey found that 89% of participants wanted to include some vacation time in their next corporate trip. And 41% of travel managers have noted a rise in colleagues asking to add a longer stay to their work trips for leisure purposes.

The essence of bleisure travel lies in adopting flexible travel policies that accommodate the addition of leisure time to business trips. Such policies demonstrate a company’s commitment to supporting the well-being and satisfaction of its employees (with a demographic shift towards different roles and people traveling more often) and recognizing that enriching travel experiences can lead to increased creativity, productivity, and loyalty.

Embracing Bleisure: Strategies for Enriching Corporate Travel

  • Implement Flexible Travel Policies: Adopt policies that allow for leisure extensions, allowing employees to explore their destinations beyond business commitments.
  • Curate Local Experiences: Provide employees with resources and recommendations for leisure activities, emphasizing local culture and unique experiences to make their trips more memorable.
  • Support Work-Life Integration: Encourage a culture that values work-life integration by promoting bleisure opportunities, recognizing that time spent unwinding and exploring can greatly enhance job satisfaction and a full recovery after meetings.

The ascent of bleisure travel is a testament to the changing priorities within the corporate world, emphasizing the need for flexibility, personal growth, and enriched experiences. 

4. International Travel is Growing Again 

The resurgence of international business travel marks a pivotal turn in the corporate travel landscape, forecasting a 15% increase over the previous year and signaling a robust recovery that surpasses pre-pandemic levels.

Several key drivers, including improved air connectivity, the revitalization of Asian markets, and a strong wave of pent-up demand for cross-border business engagements, are powering this revival. As global economies rebound and international borders become more welcoming, companies are again looking outward, eager to re-establish face-to-face interactions instead of virtual meetings, strengthen international partnerships, and explore new markets. This resurgence reflects the inherent value of in-person collaboration and underscores the adaptability and resilience of the global business travel sector.

However, capitalizing on the resurgence of international travel requires strategic planning and a keen understanding of the evolving travel landscape. Businesses must navigate various travel restrictions, safety protocols, and changing traveler preferences from the past few years to ensure successful and efficient travel engagements.

Tips for Embracing the Surge in International Travel

  • Stay Informed on Travel Policies and Restrictions: Regularly update travel policies to reflect the latest international travel guidelines, restrictions, and health protocols.
  • Leverage Technology for Seamless Travel Management: Invest in travel management tools that offer real-time updates on travel advisories, visa requirements, and safety protocols.
  • Prioritize Health and Safety: Ensure the health and safety of traveling employees by aligning travel policies with global health standards, offering access to health services, and providing comprehensive travel insurance that covers medical care abroad.
  • Foster Cultural Competency: Encourage employees to engage in cultural training or language learning programs to enhance their effectiveness in international settings, fostering better communication and understanding in diverse business environments.
  • Embrace Flexible Itineraries: Given the unpredictable nature of international travel in a post-pandemic world, adopt flexible travel itineraries and booking policies that allow for last-minute changes without significant financial penalties.

By embracing these strategies, businesses can effectively navigate the complexities of the resurgent international travel landscape, leveraging the opportunities it presents for growth, collaboration, and global engagement.

5. Asia Is Poised to Lead Travel’s Recovery in 2024

The Asia Pacific region stands at the forefront of the travel and tourism industry with its resurgence, a projected growth of 20% over 2023, according to the Global Travel Outlook 2024 from Skift Research. Asia-Pacific is outpacing other global areas and marking a significant rebound from the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. The strategic easing of travel restrictions in Asia, coupled with the region’s dynamic market and burgeoning middle class, has created a fertile ground for travel and tourism growth.

Tips to Capitalize on Asia’s Travel Sector Growth

  • Enhance Market Presence in Asia: Businesses should consider expanding their market presence by exploring partnerships, opening new offices, or increasing their regional marketing efforts.
  • Adapt to Regional Preferences: Understanding and adapting to the cultural and consumer preferences in different Asian markets is crucial.
  • Invest in Language and Cultural Training: Encourage employees to engage in language and cultural training programs to navigate the diverse markets within Asia more effectively.
  • Leverage Technology for Seamless Travel Experiences: Utilize advanced travel management platforms and apps that cater to the needs of travelers in Asia.

By following these strategies, companies can position themselves to take full advantage of the growth opportunities presented by Asia’s leading role in the global travel industry’s recovery.

Download AltoVita’s latest report, Asia Pacific’s Corporate Accommodation Landscape, to uncover supple and demand insights from industry leaders.

6. The Rise of Super Commuting 

The evolution of work cultures and the widespread adoption of remote and hybrid models have given rise to “super commuting.” This trend sees employees traveling extensive distances, often involving air travel, to reach their workplaces, challenging traditional perceptions of commuting and necessitating a rethink of corporate travel policies. The pandemic accelerated the decentralization of the workforce, with individuals relocating to regions far from office hubs while continuing to fulfill their professional responsibilities remotely.

As businesses have embraced the flexibility to hire talent irrespective of geographical constraints, the necessity for occasional in-person presence has introduced “super commuting” as an integral component of the modern work-life equation. This shift blurs the lines between daily commuting and business travel and prompts organizations to reconsider their support and compensation structures for travel.

According to Deloitte’s 2023 corporate travel study, relocated employees are now taking more trips to the company headquarters, and 70% are completely or partially paid for by the company. The survey highlights that most of these super commutes are financially supported by employers, illustrating the growing recognition of the need to facilitate this new working mode. This trend underscores the importance of adaptability and support in corporate culture as companies strive to maintain connectivity, collaboration, and culture in increasingly dispersed and remote work cultures and environments.

Tips for Accommodating Super Commuting in Corporate Travel Policies

  • Develop Flexible Travel Policies: Tailor corporate travel policies to accommodate super commuting by offering flexible travel options and covering expenses for periodic office visits.
  • Leverage Technology for Efficient Travel Management: Invest in travel management solutions that simplify super commuters’ booking and expense reporting process.
  • Promote Work-Life Balance: Encourage a culture that values work-life balance by recognizing the demands of super commuting.
  • Communicate Clearly: Ensure that policies around super commuting are communicated and transparent.
  • Evaluate and Adjust Policies Regularly: Review and adjust super commuting policies based on employee feedback and changing travel dynamics.

By embracing these strategies, companies can effectively support super commuting, reflecting a commitment to flexibility, employee well-being, and the evolving work landscape. 

7. Focus on Traveler Wellbeing  

The increasing emphasis on well-being within corporate travel reflects a broader shift in workplace culture and employee expectations among international travelers. Companies recognize that their employees’ health and wellness are not just personal concerns but integral to professional productivity, satisfaction, and retention. This acknowledgment has spurred the integration of wellbeing-focused offerings into corporate travel policies, encompassing everything from access to healthier food options to the availability of fitness facilities during travel.

More than a third of business travelers (35%) say their biggest priority is having options that support well-being and productivity, according to 2022 Travelport research. The majority of workers (87%) would consider leaving a company that does not focus on their well-being, reported Gympass.

Companies that neglect this aspect of travel policies risk higher turnover rates, with more than half as many employees considering leaving their jobs if their well-being needs still need to be addressed. In contrast, businesses that prioritize and actively invest in their employees’ well-being, especially in the context of travel, can expect benefits in terms of loyalty, productivity, and a positive corporate culture.

Tips to Incorporate Well-being into Corporate Travel Policies

  • Offer Comprehensive Well-being Packages: Include access to gyms, spas, and wellness centers in travel accommodations.
  • Provide Healthy Meal Options: Partner with airlines and hotels to ensure travelers can access nutritious and balanced meal choices.
  • Implement Flexible Travel Schedules: Allow for more flexible scheduling to enable travelers to maintain their regular exercise routines and have sufficient downtime for recovery and relaxation.
  • Educate Employees on Well-being Resources: Actively inform employees about the well-being resources available during travel.
  • Monitor and Respond to Employee Feedback: Regularly collect feedback regarding travel experiences and well-being needs.

By prioritizing traveler well-being, companies invest in their employees’ health and satisfaction and contribute to a more productive, engaged, and loyal workforce.

Blog Banner 8

8. Business Focus on Cost-Effective Travel 

In today’s corporate landscape, the imperative to manage travel expenses judiciously is crucial, especially as companies navigate the financial uncertainties post-pandemic. The introduction of remote working and hybrid work models has fundamentally altered travel behaviors and preferences, underscoring the necessity for cost-effective travel solutions that are conducive to the evolving needs of business travel.

This shift necessitates a delicate balance, aiming to optimize travel budgets while ensuring that the quality and effectiveness of travel are not compromised. Deloitte’s 2024 travel industry outlook emphasizes the ongoing importance of trips that foster client relationships and team collaboration, highlighting that despite a keen eye on budgets, the value derived from in-person interactions remains indispensable for business success.

Tips for Achieving Cost-Effective Travel

  • Implement Advance Booking Policies: Encourage employees to book travel well in advance to take advantage of lower fares and rates.
  • Adopt a Centralized Travel Management System: Use a centralized platform to manage all travel bookings and expenses, which leads to better negotiation with service providers, streamlined expense tracking, and more efficient policy enforcement.
  • Explore Alternative Accommodation Options: Consider corporate housing or serviced apartments as cost-effective alternatives to traditional hotels, particularly for more extended stays.
  • Leverage Technology for Virtual Collaboration: While in-person meetings are essential, strategically use virtual meeting technology to reduce the need for travel without sacrificing the quality of collaboration and client engagement.

By focusing on these strategies, companies can navigate the complexities of modern business travel, ensuring that travel investments are both prudent and impactful. 

Key Takeaways

As we navigate through 2024, these eight key trends can offer a roadmap for businesses looking to refine their travel policies and practices. By embracing sustainability, leveraging technology, and prioritizing traveler well-being, companies can enhance their travel programs and contribute positively to the broader global travel ecosystem.

AltoVita stands at the forefront of this evolution, providing a platform that caters to the nuanced needs of modern corporate travel. From seamless booking processes to a commitment to sustainability and traveler well-being, AltoVita is your partner in navigating the complexities of business travel today.

Ready to elevate your corporate travel management? Discover how AltoVita can transform your business travel experience. Explore AltoVita’s Business Travel Solutions.

Related Article
Measuring the Impact of the Serviced Apartments Sector in the UK

Let's talk!

Previous Article

Delivering Convenience & Compliance with Corporate Preferred Inventory Feature

Next Article

Seamless Accommodation Approvals with AltoCurate Plugin for Outlook