The Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) – the world’s largest business travel association – released its annual BTI™ Outlook, a detailed analysis of business travel in 2020, with projections for 2021 and beyond. The BTI Outlook, now in its 12th year, is an exhaustive study of business travel spending and growth covering 75 countries across 48 industries.
The true global financial impact of COVID-19 began in Q2 2020, resulting in an expected 68% decline (to $738 billion USD) from April 1, 2020 to the end of the year. Because of the relatively strong (pre-COVID) first quarter of 2020, global spending on business travel is expected to show a 52% decrease for all of 2020 (to $694 billion USD), down from $1.4 trillion USD in 2019.
Key findings of GBTA’s BTI Outlook include an analysis of 2020 challenges for the business travel industry as well as a recovery forecast.
2020 Losses and Challenges:
The magnitude of these losses and their impact on travel suppliers is unprecedented: the 2020 business travel spending losses are expected to be 10 times larger than the impact of either 9/11 or the Great Recession of 2008. Understandably, organizations with more exposure to sectors at the epicenter of the crisis are expected to face more volatility moving forward, including leisure and hospitality, ground transportation, retail, food services and energy.
Forecast on Business Travel Recovery:
“The pandemic has been devastating for business travel and it’s clear our industry will take some time to recover given the challenges we’re facing on multiple fronts,” said Dave Hilfman, interim executive director of GBTA. “Economic recovery is already underway, although very uneven across countries and sectors.” Added Hilfman, “the continued rollout of the vaccine will be central to recovery globally, as will decisions the new Biden Administration makes regarding global trade and border and quarantine policies. GBTA will continue to work on restoring consumer confidence so travel can come back safely.”
GBTA members can download a full copy of the BTI Outlook on gbta.org. The report was conducted in partnership with Rockport Analytics, a research and analytical consulting firm, and made possible by The Combined Power of Enterprise and National.
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