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Friday, 24 January 2014

Business Travel to Increase in 2014, According to New Report

Source: Business Travel to Increase in 2014, According to New Report
Website: Travel Pulse
By Rich Thomaselli



Bouyed by stronger-than-expected results from 2013, a new report out today paints a rosy picture for business travel in 2014.

"BTI Outlook – United States 2013 Q4," a report from the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA), predicts U.S. spending on international outbound travel should jump 12.5 percent in 2014 to $36.7 billion, after just 1.8 percent growth in 2013 and 0.8 percent in 2012.

Predicted domestic business travel spending in the U.S. is estimated to jump 6.6 percent to $289.8 billion in 2014.

In a pointed statement, GBTA executive director and COO Michael W. McCormick said the ability to do business overseas is critical to the expected increase.

 “If our elected officials have finally gotten the message that political uncertainty and brinksmanship stifles economic growth, we should be looking at a very healthy year for U.S. business travel,” he said. “Airports and hotels will be busy as American companies gain confidence and invest in travel to drive growth. And because business travel is a leading indicator of employment, this news is also another positive sign for the labor market.”

Final 2013 figures are not in yet but GBTA estimates business travel will have grown 3.8 percent to $272 billion, on a slight -0.3 percnt decline in trip volume to 453.3 million person-trips. Notably, despite the Federal government shutdown in 2013, the private sector delivered a stronger third quarter than expected, which boosted business travel spending.

“With the close of 2013 bringing stronger than expected growth in the U.S. business travel market, 2014 is poised to see even more growth,” said Tad Fordyce, head of global commercial solutions at Visa Inc. “After two years of tepid growth in outbound international business travel, GBTA projects this segment will see double digit growth in 2014 as more U.S. businesses increase travel spending.”

GBTA also expects group business travel to increase this year by 6.5 percent to $124.5 billion based on a volume increase of 1.7 percent.

“This is the healthiest growth outlook for meetings activity since 2011,” said McCormick. “Meetings are typically larger investments that require advance planning, and companies only make these decisions when they have confidence in the longer-term outlook for the economy.”

 With love from Travel Funky

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