Travel buyers believe domestic business travel bookings have recovered to 67% of pre-pandemic bookings, according to a new report.
The latest Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) poll also reveals that spending is at 68% of pre-COVID levels, while for international business travel, bookings have recovered to 54% of 2019 levels and spending is at 58%.
Travel managers anticipate more business travel in 2023 compared with last year, according to the report.
The poll reveals 78% expect more trips while only 15% expect the same levels of business travel as 2022 and 7% expect fewer trips.
The research shows companies are also expected to spend more on business travel with 86% of travel suppliers anticipating higher spending.
The same poll in in October 2022 revealed that 80% of suppliers expected spending to increase.
Respondents were also asked about the impact of the reopening of China’s borders and the reintroduction of testing requirements for inbound passengers from the country.
The study shows 56% support policies requiring a negative COVID test.
In addition, 15% believe the policies will lead to a significant decrease in business travel to and from China, 37% anticipate a moderate decrease and 26% don’t think there will be any impact.
Almost a quarter of U.S. travel buyers (24%) say company employees are allowed to travel to China while 28% say that employees are allowed but the company advises against it.
Overall, there is a greater willingness to travel for business compared since the last poll with 69% saying they're very willing to travel compared with 44% in October.
The full report, which received 637 responses from business travel professionals, can be viewed here.