Research: Small Businesses Struggle With Travel Headaches

New research released this week by Holiday Inn finds that roughly a third of small businesses believe they have a harder time with the process of booking travel than their larger counterparts.

When it comes to business travel, are smaller organizations getting short shrift?

That’s suggested by new research from the hotel chain Holiday Inn, which is owned by the hospitality conglomerate InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG).

The company’s Small Business Traveler Study, released this week and based on an online survey of 1,005 small business travelers, reveals that most find the process of traveling time-consuming and costly, despite nearly all of them (98 percent) conceding that there are perks for those in transit.

More troubling, the company’s research states, nearly a third of small-business travelers think that large companies get preferential treatment when it comes to business travel, despite the fact that smaller companies have a tendency to eye more cost-effective options.

Unlike larger companies, small businesses tend not to have the backing of a corporate travel-booking tool. As a result,  small businesses often do much of the booking themselves, visiting hotel websites as many as three times before deciding whether to book.

Ultimately, however, the biggest issue with travel is the stress that comes with the trip, which frustrates 56 percent of customers, according to Holiday Inn’s research, which was conducted by Kelton Global.

“Hotels are a business traveler’s home away from home when they’re on the road, and small business employees told us they want assistance to make their lives easier from booking through check-out,” noted Eric Lent, IHG’s vice president for Holiday Inn and Crowne Plaza, The Americas.

Holiday Inn says that it’s attempting to dull the pain of these issues with a new rewards program specifically targeted at small businesses called Inn Business.



Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a former senior editor for Associations Now. MORE

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