Corporate Travel Buyers Learn to Love Mobile Devices

A new study by Travelport and the Association of Corporate Travel Executives highlights the information and extra perks that business travelers should expect to be covered when booking. On the list are a couple of basic yet useful things: Visas and vaccines.

If your employees are leaving on a jet plane anytime soon, they may be in the market for a few extra perks—perhaps in the form of an app.

That’s what a new study by Travelport and the Association of Corporate Travel Executives that largely focuses on corporate travel buyers and travel program managers reveals. Titled “The Real Impact of Mobile on the Corporate Travel Program,” it makes clear that, with the new tools at travelers’ disposal, having the right information prior to and during the trip is key … even if it’s perhaps a bit more boring that you might have expected. More study highlights:

Where mobile matters most: While 89 percent of the survey respondents think mobile technology has a moderate or significant impact on corporate travel programs, that total includes different shadings when broken down geographically. Those in the Americas and Asia-Pacific nations largely felt the technology had a moderate impact, but many based in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa, went further: Half or more of all respondents said they consider mobile’s impact “significant.”

The info people want: Once employees have booked a trip, they are often looking for certain kinds of information. Among the most-offered things from travel programs? Information on visas (59 percent), immunizations (41 percent), weather (40 percent), and city maps (37 percent). The value proposition here is what such information adds to the trip: “Mobile is an excellent channel for getting this vital information right into users’ hands,” the study states. “When putting together the company mobile strategy, corporate travel managers should therefore consider the whole end-to-end travel experience—not just the transport itself.”

The extras offered: Beyond mobile offerings, the study found that, prior to buying a ticket, corporate buyers are likely to offer ancillary services to travelers, with extra baggage charges and hotel Wi-Fi the most common offerings, at 57 percent each. “Within the ancillary mix, it becomes further segmented by organisations offering options such as upgrades and lounge access only to select groups of employees,” Marco van Ieperen, general manager for Travelport Benelux, noted in a press release. That said, not everyone’s on board with the whole extra-services thing: 26 percent of respondents said their programs don’t allow booking of ancillary services prior to the trip.

The full report is available on the Travelport website [PDF].

Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a senior editor for Associations Now, a former newspaper guy, and a man who is dangerous when armed with a good pun. MORE

Got an article tip for us? Contact us and let us know!