Business Travel Reaches High Level after Recession

Since the hit taken by business travel along with other industry segments due to the 2008 recession, this tourism segment has reached its highest level, according to the Global Business Travel Association. The bounce back is the result of a stronger than expected fourth quarter of 2010 that generated a 4.2 billion US dollars increase in business travel spending, compared to Q3 of the same year.

According to GBTA data released in the group’s “Business Travel Quarterly Outlook — United States” report, the total US business travel spending was 3.2% higher in Q4, exceeding the forecast 2.3%, which meant the total spent sum was 1.9 billion higher than expected.

“Thanks to increasing corporate confidence, companies are investing more in business travel which will further stimulate business activity and economic growth,” said GBTA Executive Director Michael McCormick.

The strong business travel growth is also explained by higher prices for plane tickets, accommodation, meals, car rentals and other ground transportation. GBTA reports travel prices have risen by 2.5% in 2010 and will continue to grow by 2 to 4% this year. If that is true, the up trend for business travel is here to stay.

The promising results of 2010 have changed the forecasts for 2011, business travel spending expected to be 6.9 percent higher this year (originally 5% growth expectation).

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