Strongest business travel recovery reported since start of pandemic

The strongest recovery in business travel since the start of the pandemic in March 2020 has been claimed.

Data compiled for the Business Travel Association suggests that traveller confidence has returned.

New business travel bookings rose by more than 400% in the final week in February over the same period in 2021.

Week-on-week domestic business travel saw particularly high levels of recovery, with a 67.79% rise in departures compared to the same week in pre-pandemic 2019.

Despite a 291.54% increase in departures year-on-year, there has been an overall £2.72 billion GDP loss associated to domestic and international travel compared to the same period in 2019.

BTA chief executive Clive Wratten said: “It’s encouraging to see business traveller confidence returning once and for all as we begin to live with Covid.

“Now we must focus on how we sustainably move forward in a post-Covid world.”

The data by analytics firm Travelogix shows that in the last week of February, the lower levels of business travel to:

  • Republic of Ireland have cost UK GDP £719 million
  • Germany have cost UK GDP £493 million
  • France have cost UK GDP £338 million
  • US have cost UK GDP £210 million, and
  • Spain have cost UK GDP £164 million.

It also shows a “noticeable reduction” in active cases of Covid per 100,000 of population in 10 of the 11 countries followed by the BTA’s business travel tracker.

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