Three-quarters of member travel buyers and procurement managers surveyed this month by the Global Business Travel Association indicated their organizations’ employees are at least somewhat willing to travel for business now, continuing a sharp rise commensurate with increasing availability of Covid-19 vaccines.
About 58 percent of the buyer respondents to the May 10-15 poll suggested their travelers were “somewhat willing” to travel for business under current conditions, with another 17 percent calling their travelers “very willing.” Of those who answered otherwise, nearly 4 in 5 cited safety concerns for their travelers’ reluctance, and nearly three in four cited their currently unvaccinated status.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention last week said individuals fully vaccinated against Covid-19 could gather indoors without masks or social distancing, although it kept mask requirements in place for public transportation including airplanes, airports, trains and buses.
Meanwhile, most suppliers plan to add employees to help manage what they hope is post-pandemic travel surge, but many are concerned about finding staffers, according to the GBTA survey. About 62 percent or travel supplier and travel management company respondents indicated they plan to add employees during the next six months, and 54 percent of them said they’re concerned that competition over candidates could hinder that effort.
About 47 percent of supplier respondents cited a shortage of qualified candidates as their biggest restaffing obstacle, with 46 percent citing hesitancy among would-be employees to work in travel and 35 percent noting a desire among potential staffers to work remotely.