There’s no doubt about it, pent-up demand is driving the travel industry’s recovery. And not just leisure travel; according to the Mastercard Economics Institute’s third annual travel report, global business flight bookings exceeded 2019 levels at the end of March 2022, marking a key, post-pandemic milestone for the business travel sector.
Business travel’s strong rebound in the face of rising travel costs, inflation and geopolitical uncertainty is indicative of just how much people missed business travel – and how important face-to-face meetings and personal interaction is when it comes to the success of a business.
Unfortunately, the Northern Hemisphere’s ‘summer of travel chaos’ (although the Southern Hemisphere wasn’t completely immune) reminded everyone of what they don’t like about travel: flight cancellations, delays, queues, lost luggage, visa issues, stress and uncertainty.
In fact, a SAP Concur survey published in June 2022, which polled 300 UK-based travellers, shows that 62% of travellers are unhappy with the current pace of business travel – with many complaining they’re carrying the burden for those colleagues still unwilling to travel.
This UK report hints at overscheduling (with many organisations making up for lost time when it comes to business travel) and a “more travel on fewer shoulders” approach, with companies returning to pre-pandemic levels of business travel but with a smaller group of travellers.
And they’re not alone. Traveller wellbeing is now one of the hottest topics of 2022, and if employers don’t address flexibility, health and wellness, and traveller safety head on, their ability to retain key staff is at risk.
But how does an organisation build wellness into their travel programme? Here are just 5 ways you can support your travellers and help them to navigate the current travel landscape – while managing their health and wellbeing.