Last updated: 08:00 PM ET, Fri July 24 2015

GBTA Study Reveals More Companies Merging Travel, Meetings Programs

Business Travel | Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) | Patrick Clarke | July 24, 2015

GBTA Study Reveals More Companies Merging Travel, Meetings Programs

Recently released research from the Global Business Travel Association Foundation shows that roughly one-half of travel buyers currently have or are in the process of developing an integrated program for meetings, events and/or travel.

The GBTA reported the figure signals a 14 percent rise in program adoption over the past five years as well a 28 percent increase in completed consolidation.

The study also revealed that nearly all travel buyers with consolidated programs surveyed operate with their travel (96 percent) and meeting (94 percent) programs integrated. However only 43 percent said their events program was consolidated. 

"Popular goals and drivers for fully-consolidated programs include better leveraging and maximizing spend, obtaining better negotiated rates and dynamic pricing, and increasing efficiencies and improving service for stakeholders," said GBTA Foundation's vice president of research Joseph Bates in a statement. "Four in five travel buyers find all facets of consolidated programs appealing, so it’s no surprise they are increasing in popularity."

The GBTA Foundation also uncovered that more than four out of five travel buyers have a legitimate interest in management technology such as "accurate negotiated hotel rates displayed in the GDS, searchable hotels for receiving and negotiating RFPs and to learn about hotel rates and amenities secured by other companies." Interestingly, though, only one non-consolidated buyer said it was currently using the technology.

The study, which was sponsored by Lanyon, was conducted in May 2015 and includes responses from approximately 215 travel buyers and intermediaries based in North America and Europe. 

"It's clear from this report that those that have achieved consolidation are reaping significant rewards, and that software is core to achieving these outcomes," said Lanyon's vice president of industry strategy Kevin Iwamoto in a statement. "However, many have still not yet seen these benefits."


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