on the rise especially with foreign business markets opening up. 450 million business trips were completed by United States residences in 2010, this accounted for approximately $245 billion dollars towards the economy.
Many airlines began to concentrate on providing premium service on long haul flights especially for the first and business class business traveler with the development of more sophisticated business traveler needs over the last 15 years.
American Airlines was the first airline to offer a frequent flier program to customers. The Advantage program began in May 1981 and included Hertz car rental and Hyatt hotel. The first hotel to start an independent hotel program was Holiday Inn; they began in January 1983. National Car Rental was the first car rental company to introduce a program back in March 1987. Airlines have also been working on tools that benefit the business travellers such as: Improved and competitive mileage programs, quick check in and online check in, lounges with broadband connection, etc. Hotels are not far behind. They are also on the competition for the business travellers by offering flexible points programs, broadband connection in all rooms and fast check in and check out services.
internet booking engines have become the first destination for around 60% of leisure travelers, business travelers, especially with the need for itineraries that may include more than one destination, have still found that a knowledgeable travel agent may be their best resource for better ticket pricing, less hassle and better air and land travel planning.
Top three expense categories for business travel:
1. Airline expenses
2. Hotel expenses
3. Food and beverage expenses