Emerging markets, new tech to drive business travel in next decade

Emerging markets and technology uptake will drive the global business travel sector growth by 3.7 per cent annually over the next decade from its current US$1.2 trillion, as revealed in a Travelport and WTTC report released at the WTTC Global Summit in Bangkok.

The business travel market in the Asia-Pacific will overtake Americas with a growth rate of 6.2 per cent each year to 2027. China is expected to the way with 9.5 per cent annual growth, followed by Myanmar (8.7 per cent), Hong Kong (eight per cent), Cambodia (7.4 per cent) and India (7.2 per cent).

Currently, the largest business travel markets are the US, China, the UK, Germany and Japan.

According to the report, business travel is often the driving force in the overall growth in contribution of travel and tourism to national GDP as companies continue to find ways to develop new markets and maximise their revenues.

The report also incorporates White Paper proposals underlining the need for investment in technology and infrastructure, the removal of visa burdens, tackling cyber security and personalising services for travellers.

As well, technology is expected to be key in driving the growth in the business travel sector, where a Travelport research highlighted that business travellers want mobile phone alerts and information about disruptions, flight updates and upgrades. In addition, the report reveals that the industry needs to focus on serving digitally-connected millennials in order to engage customers more effectively.

CEO of Travelport, Gordon Wilson, commented: “Every day we see business travel growing at a significant rate in many emerging markets with technology playing an increasingly important role in easing the way for those on trips for their work. As an industry we need to continue to invest in the best technologies and infrastructure while governments need to be more business-friendly by removing burdensome visa requirements.”

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