The seventh edition of the Global Serviced Apartments Industry Report (GSAIR) shows that more than half of companies are using extended stay properties for business travel.

The report, compiled by the Travel Intelligence Network and published by The Apartment Service, found that there are more than 1,022,984 serviced apartments in 13,164 locations worldwide compared to just under 830,000 two years ago.

This represents a growth rate of 23.7 per cent compared to the 10.5 per cent published in the sixth edition of the report.

GSAIR includes a survey of 6,000 corporates, which revealed that while more than half use serviced apartments in their programme, 40 per cent allocate up to 20 per cent of their accommodation budget to extended stay solutions.

Respondents also revealed that serviced apartments are being seen as a ‘stand-alone’ category and are featuring less in standardised annual hotel RFPs.

Meanwhile, 37 per cent of companies require their employees to use a specialist agency channel – such as The Apartment Service – alongside their TMC when booking apartments. However, 47 per cent allow their travellers to independently select and book their own long-stay accommodation.

Respondents reported savings of between 17 and 29 per cent on their long-stay spend compared to traditional hotels.

During a press launch of the GSAIR, Charlie McCrow, CEO of The Apartment Service, said the serviced apartment industry has grown significantly in the European market but pointed out that extended-stay properties were popular in the Americas long before they made their way across the Atlantic. He pointed out that the increase in locations outside of the US has led to a decrease in the American market’s portion of the global total, which he said is good news for the rest of the world.

“The growth of supply of the global serviced apartment industry continues to increase at speed and as predicted in the last edition of GSAIR. There is still huge potential for growth and new opportunities in many destinations.”

Jo Layton, MD of group commercial sales at The Apartment Service, added that one of the major needs highlighted by corporates in the survey was for technology to make booking serviced apartments easier. “As the sector continues to mature and grow, the key requirements of compliance, transparency, analysis and cost effectiveness – added to ease of booking – are becoming more apparent. Open debate and continued communication with all stakeholders is important to drive the continued development of this vibrant sector forward.”

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