FCM India’s Top 6 Predictions of Business Travel for 2024
FCM Travel predicts increased business travel for 2024, especially with India’s robust and growing economy. Corporate travel programs are under the spotlight as 2024 budgets are tested. “As business travel is essential for business growth, companies
FCM Travel predicts increased business travel for 2024, especially with India’s robust and growing economy. Corporate travel programs are under the spotlight as 2024 budgets are tested.
“As business travel is essential for business growth, companies see the importance of meeting customers and suppliers. Professionals are also travelling to attend or speak at meetings, events, and seminars. We are also seeing corporate travellers take advantage of being able to combine both business and leisure travel, said Sunny Sodhi, Managing Director, FCM Travel India.
1. Business travel is still a high priority. With the influx of foreign investments and global market expansion of Indian companies, domestic, inbound, and outbound travel remains strong. In October 2023, a survey by the Global Business Travel Association found about 70 per cent of corporate travel buyers expect to increase or keep their travel budgets in 2024.
2. International demand to continue into 2024, and fare rises of 3-7 per cent is forecasted in 2024. Asia has seen an increase in economy class fares by 21 per cent and 17 per cent in business class fares year to date 2023 versus 2019. Mumbai to London has seen the highest increase of 24 per cent in economy class fares followed by Mumbai to Delhi. Business class fares from Mumbai to London saw a 14 per cent increase in 2023 versus 2019.
3. Bleisure trips are on the rise. Bleisure travel to continue to rise in 2024 as the world returns to normality, flight capacity continues to grow, and collaboration still is a priority. Employees are taking advantage of increased business travel to extend their trips for joint leisure purposes.
4. Leveraging technology for smoother travel. Technology will play a key role not only in enhancing the travellers’ experience but also in supplying data-driven insights and real-time updates. FCM’s AI assistant, SAM (Smart Assistant for Mobile), proactively informs travellers of flight delays and recommends the nearest lounge instead of waiting at the gate.
5. Wellbeing for all. There is an increased focus on caring for the mental and physical wellbeing of employees and that includes when they are attending meetings and events. This trend is shaping event planning, with a shift to designing more holistic gatherings at unique and different destinations.
FCM Meetings & Events has seen an uptick in requests for Southeast Asian cities such as Vietnam, apart from the popular Thailand and Singapore and cities in Central Asia such as Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan. Companies are also factoring in more breaks during events, more wellness activities, less packed schedules, and more informal downtime that allows fosters genuine interactions and connections.
6. Increased focus on sustainable initiatives. As sustainability has risen to the top of the business agenda, more companies join the race to net zero. To empower companies, FCM Consulting has partnered with CAPA – Centre for Aviation, which pairs the team’s unique methodology with the CAPA Envest Global Sustainability Benchmarking Report.
FCM is the only Global Travel Management Company to currently have access to this valuable data which provides a comparable ranking of airlines incorporating over 10 ‘sustainability parameters’ and is regarded by CAPA as the industry’s single source of truth on emissions, benchmarking airlines, and their performance as they transition to net zero operations.
Regardless of which travel management companies they use; enterprises can get a scorecard to learn how their air travel programme and preferred airlines score on various sustainability metrics. As companies become more astute on all things sustainability-related, travel management companies must be able to provide a deeper, and more accurate analysis of travel impact with measurable benefits