Biz Travel Up, Annoyances Remain

Travel agents report that travel for work will increase in 2015, though typical airport and aircraft concerns worry potential flyers, a survey finds.

More than 45% of Travel Leaders Group’s business-focused travel agents say their clients will travel more in 2015 than last year, and that the most valuable service for on-the-go execs is 24/7 access to travel experts. Delayed flights and limited airline seat availability remain top travel concerns, though an increasing issue is the ease of passing through security.

Allowed to pick multiple answers to this question, almost three-quarters (74%) of respondents cited airline fees for changing flights as one of the most frequently leveled ancillary fees they encounter. Next came airline fees for seat upgrades (54%) or for baggage (53%), hotel fees for Internet use (18%), “resort” fees (12%), hotel fees for parking (10%) and airline fees for Internet use (9%).

Among the findings:

  • In addition to flight delays, limited seats and slow clearance through airport security, top business travel concerns include earning frequent-flyer points (cited by 32.9% of respondents) and travel costs (28.7%).
  • Travelers most valued waivers and favors (21%), and tracking and using non-refundable tickets (13.5%) after 24-hour access to travel experts.
  • More than 22% of Travel Leaders Group business travel experts indicated that most of their business travel clients are approved for pre-check screening by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), and more than 23% said that almost half of their corporate travel clients have such approval.
  • When asked about company policies regarding first- or business-class seating for most agents’ business-travel clients, 30% of agents said only executives may select such seating, followed by policies saying that such seat selection is not allowed on domestic flights (28%) and allowed only for executives on flights longer than five hours (17%).