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BBT March/April 2019 cover
March/April 2019

Business travellers ‘apprehensive’ about Brexit

Brexit illustration

New research reveals business travellers are feeling more uneasy about Brexit than they did before the referendum.

A survey of 501 UK-based business travellers carried out by business consortium the DCC Forum found more than a third (36 per cent) are apprehensive about the UK’s exit from the EU on 29 March 2019, an increase of more than 10 per cent since before the 2016 vote.

Furthermore, only 8 per cent of business travellers said they have no worries about travelling to Europe after Brexit.

The biggest post-Brexit worry for 39 per cent of those polled is completing work visa applications ahead of travelling to Europe, a 15 per cent increase since May 2016. This fear is felt most by those in the human resources sector, with more than half (57 per cent) of HR professionals saying they’re most concern by visa issues.

Other worries highlighted in the survey include delays going through passport control (20 per cent) and potential increases in the cost of airfare (16 per cent).

Business travellers in London and the North East are the most apprehensive about Brexit (both 21 per cent), compared to those in the East Midlands at 11 per cent.

Only 6 per cent of business travellers overall believe they will feel happy after leaving the union, while 13 per cent feel nervous.

Despite their apprehension, respondents remain optimistic about the future for businesses, with 95 per cent saying they believe they will be doing more business globally in the next 12 months and travelling more as a result.

Gino Ravaioli, chairman of the DCC Forum, commented: “Evidently, questions surrounding Brexit and the impact it will have on doing business internationally remain unanswered. Understandably, this is creating more uncertainty and nervousness amongst the business community than was seen before the outcome of the vote was known in 2016.

“Businesses need and deserve clearer guidance on how they should be planning for travelling abroad for work after Britain exits the EU next year. Businesses want clarity around what Brexit really means to them, whether it’s visa applications or exchange rate costs; they want reassurance that the implications of the decision will not prevent them from fuelling international business growth.”

dccforum.com

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