Cautious Optimism For Business Travel


Business travel is on the rise as incremental increases for travel expenditures and trip frequency for 2014 are the latest findings from the Canadian Business Travel Outlook Report.

A joint effort by the Association of Corporate Travel Executives and the Conference Board of Canada, the report indicates the average corporate travel spend will increase 2.2%, with trip frequency expected to increase by 1.8%. These statistics are up 0.6 percentage points in travel spending and 1.2 percentage points in travel volume from 2013.

One of the largest growth areas is in hotel spend as 51% of respondents foresee hotel rates to increase by 2% to 4% and 20% anticipate hotel costs to rise by 4% to 6%.

“The stronger growth reflected in the latest ACTE/CBOC Canadian Business Travel Outlook study for 2014 suggests cautious optimism that as economic conditions continue to strengthen, business travel will follow suit,” said Greg Hermus, associate director, Canadian Tourism Research Institute, The Conference Board of Canada. “The modest growth expectations of travel budgets imply that corporate travel executives will remain under pressure to contain costs and ensure that average spending per trip does not escalate much.”

Now in its seventh year, the report surveyed 73 Canadian companies and organizations, representing a conservative $820 million in annual corporate travel expenditures. More than just a statistical spend analysis, this study identifies several key trends that will affect the business travel sector throughout the year.

“There are any number of spend analysis reports that try to predict the year ahead,” said Monica Hailstone, regional director, Canada, Association of Corporate Travel Executives. “But business travel is about people and we strive to see what’s behind the numbers. The number of companies using social media for communication is up by seven percentage points. Not only is this important as a trend of traveller convenience, it shows the growing adaptation and evolution of the traditional travel program — a move towards corporate travel innovation.”

According to Hailstone, the report also revealed that more than a third of companies support or provide mobile apps with another 19% looking into this area. These trends allow for access to smart data which may ultimately further enhance travellers’ experiences in the future.

The 2014 Canadian Business Travel Outlook Report is available complimentary to ACTE members at .