Global business travel expenditure increased by only 3.1% in 2019, the lowest growth rate since the economic crisis, according to the 2019-2020 Business Travel Market Management White Paper released by Trip.com Group’s business travel unit Ctrip Corporate Travel on April 23. As the world's largest business travel market, China registered a declined growth rate of 5.9% last year, while the average annual growth rate in 2013-2018 was 11%.
In the coming year, travel management enterprises should shift the focus back to the domestic market, further boost domestic business travel consumption and deeply tap into the domestic market, said Jiqin Fang, senior vice president of Trip.com Group and CEO of Ctrip Corporate Travel.
OTAs are still major booking platform for domestic business travel, with a penetration rate of 70.1%. TMCs are popular in China’s first-tier cities, while a mix of OTAs, airlines/hotel direct channels and traditional travel agencies dominate the lower-tier markets.
By industries, the highest frequencies of business trips were recorded in the accommodation and catering industry, the Internet industry, the software and information technology service industry, and the financial industry. In particular, corporate travelers in the financial industry travel most frequently, with at least one trip per week.
The White Paper pointed out that business travelers today have completely different attitudes towards over-spending. Nearly half (49.1%) of the business travelers said they were willing to pay extra money by themselves to stay in a hotel that they desire, up by 10 percentage points from last year. Among them, young people aged 25-34 are more willing to pay extra for quality accommodation experience. (Translated by Ariel)