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Major trends for 2022 business travel

January 13, 2022

With the premise of being able to get back to traveling once again, 2022 will not only see people reconnecting, but also see the planning of a trip become as important as the trip itself. With considerations that simply weren’t in our lexicon pre-pandemic, like: travel corridors, quarantine, PCR tests and digital health passes, the 2022 traveler’s considerations, needs and wants have evolved. Let’s take a closer look at top three travel trends that will shape the travel industry this year and beyond.

  1. Tech & Data: Travel checklists for business travel across 2022 has fundamentally changed and requires travelers to adapt to be able to travel safely and within the rules. As entry regulations, quarantine and testing parameters vary and frequently change across borders – navigating this complexity is essential to eliminate a traveler’s pre-trip anxiety. This is where data and tech come into play.

    Accurate and digestible travel information on one app or platform, accessible across multiple channels is key. And it’s not just about providing accurate up-to-the minute data, but also jargon-free, navigable instructions for the traveler to follow, alongside access to the relevant forms and documentation – all available in one screen tap

    Tools like the publicly accessible CWT Travel Essentials are designed to do just that. Arming travelers with all the necessary restrictions, procedures, and requirements for their unique trip - based on origin, destination, travel dates and traveler nationality.

  2. Sustainability: Companies are expected to focus more on the social and environmental impact of their business travel programs post-pandemic. At the start of last year Accenture’s global travel survey revealed that employees are prioritizing an employer’s environmental initiatives more than ever before, when making career choices. Furthermore COP26 last November pointed out that net-zero commitments have become the norm for corporates. Taking all that into account, there is obviously a need for a well-defined road map to reach net-zero.

    Low carbon initiatives, biofuel programs and carbon emission estimates for business travel will therefore feature prevalently across 2022 business travel strategies, where finding the sweet spot between operational efficiency, cost, employee wellbeing and sustainability is pivotal. CWT’s responsible travel consulting framework ECO was launched over a year ago to help companies achieve this, and build more sustainably balanced travel programs.

  3. Duty of care: Beyond these post-pandemic trends, as travel returns, travel managers and their travelers will continue to face other risks which need to effectively factor into a company's travel management program. Natural disasters, political and social conflict, crime (including cyber-crime) and economic risks can affect the safety, security and health of travelers, as well as the outcome of their trip. CWT’s Traveler Tracking Tool and itinerary-based safety, security and medical alerts in its myCWT web and app helps employees handle the unexpected and make informed, proactive decisions about today’s travel risks.