But opportunities likely to shrink

Travel buyers can make significant savings next year, the 2010 Industry Forecast by Advito, released today (October 22), said.

But the opportunities for savings are likely to shrink during the year, the consulting arm of BCD Travel said.

Mary Ellen George, general manager of Advito, the negotiating outlook for corporate was “excellent” and there were “impressive discounts for customers who deliver ample business to their airline suppliers.”

But she warned that airlines might get “fussier” about their mix if business from corporate and possible withdraw deals for clients that only buy tickets in the lowest fare classes.

Mr George said the other side of the coin was that “Prospects for a deal will remain particularly good in business class.”

Advito in its forecast predicts moderate rises in airfares in 2010 with an estimated 3% increase on long haul flights out of Europe and a 1.5% rise in regional flights in the continent.

Long haul flights out of M North America are likely to go up by 4%, Advito said.

It predicted a small revival in passenger numbers and continuing capacity cuts to bring supply and demand closer together.

Advito said: “This will lead to some price increases and, perhaps more importantly, to the earlier closing of lower fare buckets as airlines attempt to manage yield upwards.”

It said the outlook for negotiating air deals was not as good as 2009 but still remained excellent with “impressive discounts” to be had.

The hotel outlook was equally good, the consultants said with it remaining “firmly a buyer’s market.”

Advito said “Clients have an excellent opportunity to improve their rates even if they re-negotiated during in 2009.

“Clients who did not re-negotiate have an opportunity for significant reductions and should not miss the chance to make up lost ground.”

It predicted that average daily rates would drop next year in Europe by 1.2%, by 0.4% in North America, the Middle East by 0.6£ and Asia-Pacific by 1.5%. Only South America and Africa would see rises.

Ms George said the recession would leave a lasting legacy which would provide opportunities to “drive improvements to travel programs that travel managers could previously only dream of”.

But she warned: “While we predict travel managers will retain much of their newly found influence on senior management, they should work as fast as they can to initiate and complete changes before the window of opportunity snaps shut.

“Change management is much harder to drive in a flourishing economic climate,”   

www.advito.com   www.bcdtravel.com




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