A survey released today by GetThere
, a Sabre Company, shows that while most companies have cut back on travel, many are maintaining essential travel by using online booking systems to reduce costs. Corporate online travel specialist GetThere says 43 percent of employee trips are now booked online, a significant increase from the 24 percent reported for the same period last year.
The vast majority of companies responding to the Corporate Benchmark survey reported that they are seeing 15 percent lower airfares on average, and 43 percent lower travel agency fees for trips booked online.
“While most companies have had to reduce travel spending, many are strategically using online technology to reduce the cost of travel rather than purely eliminating trips,?h said Jeff Palmer, GetThere?fs president. ?gWhile managing costs is crucial, the companies that find ways to maintain essential levels of travel are more likely to emerge in a strong competitive position as the economy recovers.
“One of the most interesting areas of cost savings is how employees make compromises and select lower price options when they see them online. People fundamentally want to do the right thing for their company.?h
GetThere, which provides online corporate booking technology to thousands of companies, including more than half of the US Fortune 200, conducts the Benchmark Survey internationally to identify key trends in corporate travel management and the use of online technology. Some key findings were:
- 88 percent of companies reported that airfares booked online were 15 percent lower, on average, than those booked over the phone;
- 89 percent of the companies surveyed reported their travel agency service fees were 42 percent lower for online bookings, on average;
- the average percentage of trips booked online in each organisation was 43 percent, up significantly from the 24 percent adoption rate reported this time last year;
- most companies surveyed, 52 percent, are either using or considering a full or partial mandate of their online booking site; a trend which continues to increase due to economic pressures, executive awareness and employee comfort booking online.
The GetThere Benchmark Report is based on a survey of companies with 2001 global air travel spending that ranged from less than US$10m to more than US$300m with an average of US$55 million. It provides a snapshot of the trends and savings realised using online travel booking systems, and was created to help companies identify how their travel programs compare with others in the industry. The complete results of the survey are being provided only to GetThere customers.