Shift to managed travel augurs well for TMCs, but survival key right now

Shift to managed travel augurs well for TMCs, but survival key right now

Survival remains the imminent challenge for business travel agencies right now, according to a report just released by Amadeus late 2020.

However the Reboot. Recharge. Rethink Business Travel research also shows the ‘most voted’ business travel evolution in APAC was a predicted shift from unmanaged to managed travel. This is obviously a trend that will benefit travel management companies.

‘With travel restrictions and border closures changing frequently across markets, most executives believe that there would be strong business need for real-time information on quarantine requirements, schedule changes and route management tied to the establishment of travel bubbles.’

And there was reasonable optimism in the medium term shown by executives from business travel agencies.

‘In APAC, the majority of executives were optimistic that business travel would resume first (38%) or at the same pace as leisure travel (47%) as more travel bubble arrangements are established between key markets such as Singapore and Hong Kong,’ says the report. ‘Business travel is expected to vary across sectors, with 70% of APAC executives agreeing that marine and energy companies would resume travel first.’

When asked about what the future of business travel would look like, there was consensus among APAC executives on the need for ‘beyond-air’ content - 18% of executives said hotels content would increase in demand, alongside insurance (15%), new ancillary services (9%), and car rentals (9%).

Looking at the situation right now, though, it is clear many executives are still fighting to keep their businesses alive.

‘Given low business demand, many face significant cash flow concerns and a need to tightly manage costs. The main recovery strategy for executives in the APAC region was clear: 64% said cost optimisation would be their top priority in the mid-term, with a focus on operational optimisation using automation and digitisation. This was closely followed by building critical workforce capabilities to manage new technology and deliver better journeys.’

Read the report here.

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