Technology and green concerns impact business travel

Technology and green concerns impact business travel

A combination of environmental concerns and increased use of new technology will lead to a reduction in business travel of almost a third.

Corporates trying to reduce their carbon footprint will contribute to a 12% fall in travel and meetings (see chart).

While new technology such as video conferencing will mean an 18% drop, according to research from the Institute of Travel & Meetings.

Chief executive Paul Tilstone told breakingtravelnews: “Alternative technologies will contribute to a greater drop than green concerns.

“However together the 30% figure is huge and although it’s no great surprise to me, the implication for business travel is significant.”


Tilstone said that although environmental concerns were being pushed to the bottom of the pile during the current downturn, they would play a significant part in travel reduction when the economy picked up.

“The likely impact on the supply of communication technology and travel is yet to materialise in any clear form at a time when survival is the name of the game, but when revenues return real change can be expected,” he added.

Cost was still paramount in the current climate with more and more corporates pushing their travellers to book online.

The research also tested the reactions of companies to the pricing policies of suppliers, including rail companies, airlines and intermediaries.

The responses indicated that rail needs to significantly reduce fares to ensure competitiveness and buyers expect intermediaries such as travel management companies and Hotel Booking Agencies to reduce costs even further in the coming years.

The research also found that:

•      31% of buyers manage a combined travel and meetings programme.

•      Those with consolidated travel and meetings programmes estimated an amazing 17% total savings achieved due to consolidation alone

•      80% already manage, or intended to manage in the next 2 years, communication technology alongside travel