Advito forecasts weaker business travel in 2013

DEMAND growth for business travel is projected to slow down next year, according to the 2013 Industry Forecast by Advito, BCD Travel’s independent consulting unit.

The study said continued eurozone woes would soften growth rates in other regions, even in historically strong driver markets such as China. Demand, however, will continue to outpace supply, with airlines keeping a particularly tight hold on inventory. As a result, buyers are warned to brace for low- to mid-single digit price hikes in airfares and hotel rates.

Bob Brindley, principal at Advito, said: “With the current macroeconomic situation uncertain and limited capacity going into next year, it’s more important than ever that buyers have a clear understanding of their buying power going into their negotiations, make better use of data analysis in their decision making process, and closely monitor their travel spend.”

He added: “For instance, with airfares projected to increase, buyers should pay close attention to fare restrictions and recommend smarter purchasing behaviour for their travellers. On the hotel side, options include searching for internal savings such as minor downgrades in accommodation standards and expanding the number of properties used in high demand markets to improve the likelihood of booking availability.”

For the first time, the 2013 Industry Forecast also analyses secondary spend categories including dining, mobile roaming and ground transportation. These expenses are estimated to account for 18 per cent of total T&E, and will become a major savings opportunity in 2013 and beyond.

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