The past year has been an incredibly challenging time for the travel industry, with business travel being reduced to the bare minimum and essential journeys only. However, one thing is for certain, travel will return in the near future, and businesses will seek to return to in-person meetings and events that have brought colleagues and companies together in the past. Over the course of the next year, we can expect to see an increase in business travel once again. With that, there will be many changes and positive developments we can hope to experience in the world of business travel.
Different Accommodation Options
As with the leisure travel market, business travelers’ accommodation preferences are beginning to shift away from chain hotels and to smaller boutique properties and short-term rental options. With the concerns around health and safety following the current pandemic, you’ll find that individuals feel more comfortable after a day of meetings to return to an apartment where they can cook their dinner and relax without having to be surrounded by people in hotel restaurants or bars. Another perk of more spacious accommodation options is the opportunity to keep working in the evening, especially when an apartment offers a good office setup away from home.
Longer Trips to Faraway Destinations
There’s a chance that the number of people traveling within businesses will be reduced for the next couple of years, but for the ones who are still required to travel, you can expect companies to make the most of their time away. Anyone traveling to faraway destinations, such as Asia and Australia, can expect to be offered more lengthy trips to make the most of the flights and minimize the chance of an illness while traveling. Companies will look to group together trips that may previously have been completed as separate journeys. This will have many benefits to both the company and the employee, with a reduction in costs, potentially more environmentally-friendly trips, and less jet lag and exhaustion from flying.
Business trips combined with Leisure
With many of us aiming to take fewer flights at the moment, one good thing that may come out of the current climate is the opportunity to combine business trips with leisure. Over the recent years, this trend was already on the rise, with workers opting to stay in their destination for a long weekend or vacation time following their business duties. It’s a great way for individuals to benefit from flights that have been paid for by their company and minimize time spent traveling between destinations. The next time you get the chance to go to a fun destination for work, consider adding a few days on and making the most of the chance to explore a new destination. With reduced travel being the norm at the moment, it’s likely that travel will become more of a perk of jobs as opposed to an inconvenience that many people may have felt it was in the past.
Increase in the use of Technology
Technology is starting to make a huge impact on travel, and business travel will see major benefits from this development. Starting with the booking and check-in process, these can now be simplified with apps and sites that offer you the chance to turn up much closer to your flight time. With Wi-Fi becoming more common on airplanes, employees may now be expected to make the most of their time in the air and use this time productively to catch up on emails or outstanding work. Our phones allow us to be constantly updated with changes to our trips and updates from the office, and while this brings some downsides, it means that you won’t fall behind with your other work while you are away. In the future, expect to see artificial intelligence or virtual reality used when you check in to hotels, which will offer visitors a more personalized experience and may help to make your business trips more efficient and smooth.
While business travel is still heavily reduced at the moment, by the end of the year, we can start to see developments and plans being put in place by companies and individuals around the world to start traveling. With so many missed events, conferences, and meetings this year, business travel will be an important step towards rebuilding relationships throughout the upcoming years. Like all other forms of travel, it is certain that business travel will eventually rise to its previous popularity, as businesses look to reconnect with partners and employees around the world.