Sabre survey reveals trends shaping booking behaviour in APAC

Corporate travel is on the rise in the region, but people are doing it differently

As economic growth continues to sweep across the Asia-Pacific, more and more companies are expecting their corporate travel managers to contribute to their business success by asking them to look for door-to-door travel booking solutions, demanding expense integration, and to identify cost saving opportunities.

This was revealed in aSabre Corporate Travel Survey that compiled insight from over 70 corporate travel management companies (TMCs) from across the region.

Corporate travel is on the rise in the region, but people are doing it differently

Almost seven in 10 (65%) respondents admit they are asked to identify cost savings, and this cost-conscious approach is encouraging travel managers to find new ways to minimise spending. While premium economy continues to gain ground in the region, one travel manager in three has recorded an increase of close to 5% in premium economy bookings over the last year.

As travel-related expenses become a central consideration for companies, the survey also reveals that downgrades, shifting reservations from business to economy class, account for close to 40% of their bookings. What’s more, almost one in four have identified a significant increase in their low-cost carrier (LCC) share of volume.

The survey also reveals that 32% of respondents expect solutions that enable mobile booking capacities will become mainstream within the next two years, but only 10% believe that virtual payment solutions will gain widespread acceptance – an unfortunate conclusion, as virtual payments are a tremendous asset for corporate travel management companies looking to optimise their reporting capabilities through rich data capturing, and help to better manage revenue.

Finally, the Sabre Corporate Travel Survey also revealed that robust travel policies and better visibility of the total cost of trips are anticipated to become much more important in the next two years. Travel policy compliance remains an important cause for concern, with 76% of respondents indicating that travellers are using online consumer sites offering lower fares and rates to shop for their travel.

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