New research from American Express has found that globalisation is causing a significant shift in attitudes toward business travel, with 76 per cent of companies believing face-to-face meetings are essential to achieving their objectives and 54 per cent saying reducing the amount of trips would give competitors an edge.
The survey of business travellers revealed that 71 per cent believed travel made their jobs more interesting, while 52 per cent said these trips made them think about working abroad. The average traveller takes 11 trips a year, with six in the UK and five overseas.
When asked what helps them get the most out of a business trip, 76 per cent of respondents said good preparation helps them stay productive, with 62 per cent admitting that failure to prepare for meetings in advance significantly impacts their output.
Professionals also highlighted logistical issues that affected their productivity, including last-minute delays (66 per cent) and poor internet access or other technology problems (62 per cent). To maximise their time on the road, around three-quarters of those surveyed check in for flights in advance and almost two-thirds ensure their devices are charged before they depart.
The research also found the most important services for business travellers are airport lounge access (39 per cent), business-class travel (36 per cent), staying in four or five-star accommodation (36 per cent), having access to a company credit card (26 per cent), and staying on a designated ‘hotel club’ floor for business travellers (16 per cent).
Fabienne Cauli, general manager of Global Client Group, International at American Express, commented: “Professionals have told us that business travel is not only an important aspect of the job and a critical part of business growth, it’s also one they enjoy and find personally fulfilling. Supporting business travellers by ensuring admin and travel logistics are straightforward and fuss-free will make business travel more productive and more rewarding.
“The research highlighted that being able to offer travel with work is an important attraction and recruitment tool for businesses, as well as a vital part of overall job satisfaction.”