The Business Traveler's Corner

How Millennials Are Redefining Business Travel!

Posted by Marwane El Mekaoui on Apr 4, 2018 2:04:28 PM
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Boomers, generations X, Y, Z ... and now "millennials". Generations follow one another with different aspirations and needs in their daily work life. The business travel sector is no exception. Explanations on the expectations of this new generation of corporate travelers.

Experiences! that's what millennial’s are all about when they travel. If for now they do not represent the bulk of business travelers, they will soon take the stripes: the Y generation already accounts for one third of passengers on flights in the United States - it will represent 50% on the horizon 2020, compared to 11% for Baby Boomers.

Born in a globalized and connected world, 18-34 year olds do not have the same relation to business trip as their elders:  They expect from their corporate travels similar experiences to their personal trips. Travel bookings must be accessible in one click with a smooth navigation adapted to their Smartphone and everything must be editable in seconds. According to a survey commissioned by Axys Consultants, OpinionWay, 74% of 18-34 years also believe that some travel could be avoided through video conferencing and digital tools.

"Bleisure" is on the rise

The Bleisure is a recent phenomenon that combines leisure and work during a business trip. A boon for young travelers, for whom work is an opportunity to discover the world. In fact, Generation Y finds more pleasure during Business trips than their elders: 50% vs. 34%.  

What about the travel policy?

Good news,  millennials are more willing to take in business trips than their elders. But they are also more sensitive to travel conditions, and more critical of the formalization of their company’s travel policy. According to the OpinionWay survey of business travelers aged 18 to 34, two out of five business travelers say their company's travel policy is not changing fast enough to meet their needs.

With difficulties to understand that it pushes them to go to the conventional hotels or airlines. "It seems to me that I am going in the direction of the cost reduction desired by the company, while choosing an accommodation that suits me better, and yet, I oppose the travel policy, more expensive and less friendly" says Marie , a frequent business traveler in a consulting firm. For 16% of travelers, these policies seem obsolete. The new generation of business travelers wants to be more involved in the creation of their company’s travel policy and would like to be able to share their suggestions more easily.

 It will be in every interest to give the floor to employees who travel, and to those of the Y generation in particular: already 49% of respondents report their suggestions to their management regarding hotels, means of transport, processing of expense reports, means of reservation, means of payment, rental of short-term vehicles.

Encourage and reward

How, despite everything, can these employees respect a travel policy, if companies do not have the opportunity, the intention or the possibility to change it quickly? Starting from the observation that Generation Y responds better to encouragement than control, some companies adopt gamification strategies to encourage conforming behaviors within this group . That way companies reward compliance by diverting travelers from less effective, non-compliant solutions and  create a way of having more engaged, personally satisfied employees and therefore potentially more productive.

Travel management companies take this data into account and provide companies with business travel tools that are responsive, intuitive and useful to the new generation of business travelers.

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Topics: Travel Management company, Corporate travel management, business travelers, business class travel, Business Travel, Travel Policy, Corporate Compliance, Bleisure, corporate travel

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