Business travelers paid significantly more for travel-related purchases in the first quarter of 2012, with domestic airfares showing the largest increase, according to the most recent Business Travel Monitor survey from American Express Global Business Travel.
Prices across all categories of service for trips originating in North America to domestic and international destinations increased compared to the first quarter of 2011 as companies continue to invest in travel and suppliers manage capacity.
Average domestic airfares increased 6 percent in the first quarter of 2012 compared with 2011; average international airfares increased 4 percent; and average domestic hotel rates increased 5 percent while average international hotel rates increased 1 percent.
“Prices rose in the first quarter as companies put travelers on the road to jump-start 2012 business goals while supply remained relatively tight,” said Christa Degnan Manning, director, Expert Insights Research, American Express Global Business Travel. “To optimize travel budgets in this environment, companies should look at how they are encouraging compliance with corporate travel policies with positive motivators, instead of punishments for non-compliance.”