Air, hotel, ground and meetings and events prices are expected to remain stable or only see “marginal” increases in 2017, despite global economic uncertainty, according to the 2017 Global Travel Price Outlook.
The annual study showed across the four sectors prices will remain flat but it highlighted six risks heading into 2017 that could have an impact – emerging market performance, financial market turbulence, geopolitical risks, Brexit, fluctuating oil prices and changing US interest rates.
“While business travel repeatedly demonstrates its resilience, the high level of global uncertainty we face heading into 2017 means travel buyers have to be more nimble and flexible than ever in crafting travel programmes,” said Jeanne Liu, GBTA Foundation vice president for research.
“The outlook shows only marginal increases or flat travel prices, but for 2017, the key to building successful travel programmes will be watching and reacting to an ever-changing global landscape,” she added.
Airline prices are projected to increase only slightly (2.5%) in 2017, while fares may fall below 2015 in some markets.
Ancillary fees are expected to have an increasing impact, they grew to 7.8 per cent of global airline revenue in 2015, up from 6.7 per cent in 2014.
The study showed that despite further consolidation in the industry prices won’t be affected until 2018. Hotel services such as room service, laundry and security remain important to corporate travellers. Traditional hotels, therefore, remain an attractive option for business travellers, despite sharing economy options.
The report showed an “intensely competitive” climate among ground transport operators will dictate continued flat pricing for the sector.
Meetings and Events
Modest increases in cost per attendee, per day, for meetings and events are expected for Asia Pacific and North America. Europe is expected to remain flat and Latin America will see a decrease of 10 per cent.
Group sizes will increase marginally in the 3-6 per cent range for Asia Pacific, Europe and North America, while remaining flat in Latin America.
The annual study is published by Carlson Wagonlit Travel and GBTA Foundation, the education and research arm of the GBTA.
Sign up to BBT’s twice-weekly newsletter