Nearly half of US business travellers use extended stay accommodation when travelling overseas

George Sell George Sell Uploaded 11 October 2015

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US: Research from the GBTA Foundation shows that 48 per cent of all US international business travellers have used extended stay accommodation in the past year.

The study, entitled Extended Stay Accommodations: Awareness, Supply and Demand, was produced by the education and research arm of the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) in partnership with WWStay.

It revealed interesting differences across age groups when it comes to extended stay accommodations. Millennials (18-34) use extended stay accommodations more than any other group, with 72 per cent staying at one for international business travel in the past year. Only 48 per cent of generation Xers (35-54) and an even smaller 26 per cent of baby boomers (55+) used an extended stay accommodation during the same time period.
 
In addition, 60 per cent of business travellers who use extended stay accommodations book it themselves with many of that group booking through an online travel site (41 per cent) or directly on the extended stay website (38 per cent). Booking outside of a company tool could potentially mean the traveller is not compliant with company travel policy. More importantly, the company may not be able to locate their traveller if an emergency occurs.

The top reasons business travellers said they prefer extended stay accommodations are fully equipped kitchens (45 per cent), amenities (40 per cent) and the residential feel (36 per cent). However many US-based international business travellers note that they have challenges booking their own extended stay accommodations with minimum stay requirements (29 per cent), limited number of accommodations (21 per cent) and lack of reviews from previous guests (20 per cent) topping the list of negatives.
 
"This study showed a clear demand for extended stay accommodations," said Joseph Bates, GBTA Foundation vice president of Research. "To ensure demand continues to increase, companies that provide extended stay accommodations should address the challenges noted by becoming more flexible with minimum stay requirements, providing an up-to-date website listing amenities and guest reviews and increasing the supply of extended stay accommodations available."
 
An overwhelming majority of business travelers (91 per cent) are very satisfied or satisfied with their lodging experience on their last international trip of five or more days regardless of what type of lodging was used. Major differences are revealed however, when looking at satisfaction levels by type of extended stay accommodation, with much higher satisfaction levels at extended stay hotels (94 per cent) and corporate furnished accommodations (87 per cent) compared to accommodation rentals (74 per cent).

"International extended lodging, especially in the form of corporate furnished apartments are really the final frontier in business lodging," said WWStay CEO Rajeev Goswami. "Travellers are 'doing their own thing' and getting frustrated largely because they and their companies aren't aware a solution exists to search, book and track thousands of furnished apartments around the world. We believe this sector represents a huge opportunity for multi-national corporate travel managers to lean in and take control of this mostly unmanaged lodging channel, whilst providing better traveller service, cost control and duty of care compliance."
 
The study is based on an online survey of 1,000 US based international business travellers who travelled internationally for business during the past 12 months. Fielding took pace from August 25 to September 1 through a third party.
 
www.gbta.org

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