Business Travel Show Europe Kick Off, 23 February,
Global Travel Risk Summit Europe, April 2023,
3rd Annual Sustainable Business Travel Summit
GetThere, the online corporate travel reservation technology, is planning a major push in Europe in 2007.Beverly Heinritz, general manager of the Sabre-owned company, said the bulk of its growth for next year would be focused on Europe.She said GetThere was already enjoying a 43% year on year growth in the continent but was now seeking to target specific areas for expansion.Ms Heinritz said GetThere had entered Europe through the expansion of multi-national customers from the States.It now had clients in 15 countries of the continent and was growing in Central and Eastern European countries like the Czech Republic and Poland.She said specific areas where they wished to expand were Spain and Germany. In the latter country, GetThere wanted to complete its integration of the DB rail network.It also planned to enhance its capability with the French rail system SNCF including provision for booking from outside France.In the UK, GetThere was in "quite good shape" but wanted to integrate more services like airport parking into its technology as clients were now asking for this.She also wanted to see specific airlines which customers used incorporated into the content on offer.She said the European market was "close to the US in terms of size" and had a "comparable airline operation."But there were much less of hotel and airline content on the GDSs in Europe.Ms Heinritz, who was speaking to BTE at the recent ACTE global education conference in Barcelona, said there were three trends now current in the travel industry: the environment, the work life balance and safety and security.The second issue, more prominent in the US than, so far, in Europe was seeing more and more business travellers extending their trips for personal reasons and also taking a companion with them.She said that the US consultant PhocusWright had found that up to one third of trips in America were now being extended and more travellers were asking for sporting or leisure activities to be booked for them while away.
* see BTE's recruitment site www.businesstraveljobs.com