Corporate travel expected to flourish in 2012

Corporate travel appears poised to have a healthy year ahead, as many Millennials and Generation X professionals expect to take to the road more often in 2012, according to an online survey of 1,000 U.S. business travelers commissioned by Deloitte conducted in late September. 

Specifically, 85% of business travelers surveyed expect to take more or the same number of trips next year, with 27% of 18- to 44-year-olds expecting to take more trips in 2012. Sixteen percent of business travelers 45 years old and above are planning to take more trips next year. 

Hotel preferences

The majority of business travelers surveyed feel experiences at hotels operating under the same brand name differ depending on location, with 60% noting that facilities and service quality vary widely.

When considering loyalty, 46% of the 18- to 29-year-olds say they prefer to stay at their favorite hotel brand even if it is not conveniently located, whereas 37% of those 30 and older do the same.

Two-thirds of respondents say they often work in their hotel room, with younger business travelers enjoying working in more social spaces, such as executive/business lounges and the lobby or common area. Nearly two-fifths (36%) of the 18- to 44-year-olds surveyed say they often work in the lobby or common area, while only 17% of those 45 and older do the same.

When it comes to interacting with hotel staff for check-in, 36% of the 18- to 44-year-old respondents favor automated kiosks rather than checking in with a hotel employee at the front desk, whereas only 19% of the 45-and-older survey participants say they prefer automated kiosks.

Amenities continue to play a key role in the overall hotel experience, with 61% expecting more from hotels with regards to amenities and services. As a whole, 77% of business travelers surveyed indicated complimentary internet is important to them, and 63% are satisfied with the availability of free Wi-Fi in hotels.