Corporate Travel: Weekend Poll Results

With thanks to all who participated, here are the results of this past weekend’s poll. Our focus:

How do you manage travel for your principal or executive(s)?

74% of respondents book 16 or more business trips annually … and 54% of all respondents book 24+ trips annually. Imagine the incredible contacts of the one respondent who books 80 trips per annum! When it comes to the nature of travel you book, 67% of respondents reported that they book both domestic and international trips – up from 55% last year.

More than half of respondents make all their own bookings, while 24% turn to a travel agent for all bookings.

What has the greatest impact on your choice of airlines? Efficiencies such as schedules and airport locations are the most significant factor for 47% of respondents. Budgets are the primary consideration for 25% of you, down from 42.86% in 2015.

What about hotel selection? Again, efficiencies represent the greatest single factor. Assistants pay attention to the location of their travellers’ meeting or conference site, the amenities offered at various hotels, and logistics such as access to transportation, dining and entertainment.

Need to book accommodation in a city with which you’re unfamiliar? You turn to your peers and online reviews  … and I’ve heard from readers that this includes my own Travel page, and reviews of hotels in which I’ve stayed.

Travel portfolios  … More than three out of every four respondents maintain a portfolio or file containing details of your travellers’ preferences. The astute admin. professional ensures these are securely stored, and such systems create efficiencies for both you and your traveller. Just as importantly, your traveller will appreciate that you’ve captured and paid attention to her or his preferences.

 THE DATA: YOUR RESPONSES

Porto Train Travellers Copyright Shelagh Donnelly

Six out of 10 respondents book 24 or more business trips annually – More than half of you book an average of two trips monthly, compared to almost 27% in 2015.

  • 24+ business trips annually:  57% of respondents, compared to 26.92% in 2015
  • 16 – 23 business trips annually: 14% of respondents, compared to 38.46% in 2015
  • 11 – 15 business trips annually:  0% of respondents, compared to 11.54% in 2015
  • 5 – 10 business trips annually:  5% of respondents, compared to 11.54% in 2015
  • 0 – 4 business trips annually: 19% of respondents, compared to 11.54% in 2015
  • 5% of the 2016 respondents selected “Other”. One commented, “80” (trips)

67% of respondents coordinate both domestic and international travel – Here’s what you said you book.

  • both domestic and international travel: 67% of respondents, compared to 55% in 2015
  • primarily international travel: 14%, compared to 25% in 2015
  • primarily domestic travel:  14%, compared to 20% in 2015
  • 5% of the 2016 respondents selected “Other”. One wrote that the question wasn’t applicable.

52% of respondents manage all bookings themselves –  while the percentage of you who rely on a travel agent for all your bookings jumped almost fivefold from 2015. See below for the overall picture.

  • 52% of respondents book both domestic and international travel themselves, compared to 62% in 2015
  •  24% of respondents rely primarily on a travel agent for all travel, compared to 5% in 2015
  • 9.5% of respondents book domestic travel themselves, and turn to a travel agent for international travel, compared to 24% in 2015
  • 5% of respondents rely on in-house experts who have responsibility for travel, compared to 9% in 2015
  • 9.5% of respondents selected “Other”. One of these people wrote, “I make all arrangements except air; suggest flights; he books own flights”.

Flight over US 2 Copyright Shelagh Donnelly

Airlines: 81% of respondents make choices on basis of their experience and insights, along with travellers’ preferences – while less than 10% of respondents’ airline choices are prescribed by their organisation

  • 81% of respondents select airlines on the basis of their insights and experience, and an individual traveller’s preference, compared to 75% in 2015
  • 9.50% of respondents’ airline choices are prescribed by their organisation, compared to 20% in 2015
  • 9.5% of respondents selected “Other”, compared to 5% in 2015 . Some wrote “Not applicable”, while another expanded by stating, “We’re in a major hub”.

Efficiencies, followed closely by budgets, have the most significant impact on your airline choices

  • 46% of respondents reported that efficiencies (schedules, airport locales, etc.) have the greatest impact on their choice of airlines, compared to 47.62% in 2015
  • 25% of respondents reported that budget has the greatest impact on their choice of airlines, compared to 42.86% in 2015
  • 15% of respondents reported that individual travellers’ personal proferences have the greatest impact on their choice of airlines, compared to 0% in 2015
  • 11% of respondents reported that loyalty/reward program(s) have the greatest impact on their choice of airlines, compared to 4.6% in 2015
  • 3% of respondents selected “Other”, compared to 4.76% in 2015. One person commented, “Not applicable”.

 

InterContinental Singapore Copyright Shelagh Donnelly

Efficiencies continue to be the dominant consideration in choice of accommodation (Above: a look inside our lovely suite at the InterContinental Singapore earlier this year)

  • 76% of respondents that efficiencies (meeting or conference site, hotel amenities, proximity to dining, entertainment or transportation) had the greatest impact on accommodation selections, compared to 69.57% in 2015
  • 16% of respondents reported that budget had the greatest impact on their accommodation choices, compared to 26.09% in 2015
  • 8% of respondents reported that loyalty/reward programs had the greatest impact on their accommodation choices, compared to 4.34% in 2015

Accommodation: While 67% of respondents make choices on basis of their experience & insights along with travellers’ preferences, almost 25% of such choices this year were prescribed by your organisation 

  • 67% of respondents select airlines on the basis of their insights and experience, and an individual traveller’s preference – compared to 75% in 2015
  • 24% of respondents’ airline choices are prescribed by their organisation  – compared to 15% in 2015
  • 9% of respondents selected “Other”, compared to 10% in 2015. Some commented that the question was not applicable, while another wrote, “most travel for conferences; use HQ hotel site”.

How do you select accommodation in a city with which you’re unfamiliar? (no comparisons with 2015; this is a new question this year)

  • 36.11% of respondents reach out to other admin. professionals for recommendations
  • 33.33% of respondents read online reviews
  • 22.22% make choices based on loyalty programs
  • 8.33% of respondents selected “Other”.  Apart from “n/a” comments, other readers wrote, “Our local business partners make the reservations” and “I also check with the destination MICE/Tourism office for relevant information.”

Almost three out of every four of you maintain portfolios documenting individuals’ travel preferences (no comparison to 2015; new question in 2016)

  • 74% of respondents reported that they maintain a portfolio/document reflecting individuals’ travel preferences
  • 17% of respondents reported that they do not maintain such information
  • 9% of respondents selected “Other”. Comments included, “Travel portfolios are kept by the travel agent” and “It’s a MUST DO”.

Embedding Itineraries in Outlook/the traveller’s electronic calendar is on the rise – and, ironically, so is the use of hard copy folders. Here’s the breakdown.

  • 34% of respondents provide their travellers a combination of resources (electronic itineraries through either an app or e-file, plus a hard copy itinerary for backup), compared to 62% in 2015
  • 28% of respondents provide their travellers with a hard copy folder or packet containing their itineraries, compared to 14.29% in 2015
  • 21% of respondents report embedding all materials in Outlook/the traveller’s electronic calendar, compared to 0% in 2015
  • 14% of respondents provide their travellers with a PDF/other electronic file containing their itineraries, compared to 14.29% in 2015
  • 3% of respondents selected “Other”,  compared to 9.52% in 2015. One person commented, “All my company travellers prefer hard-copy folder!! WiFiConnect can be very low”.

Fewer than a third provide copies to your traveller’s significant other – and, in 13% of respondents’ cases, their travellers have no significant other.

  • 54% of respondents do not provide copies of itineraries to their traveller’s spouse/significant other, , compared to 30.43% in 2015
  • 29% of respondents do provide copies of itineraries to their traveller’s spouse/significant other, compared to 34.78% in 2015
  • 13% of respondents reported that the question was not applicable, compared to 26.09% in 2015
  • 4% of respondents selected “Other”. One person wrote, “Yes- for international travel only”.

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