“Our survey among ExpertFlyer customers and View from the Wing readers really focused in on the true business traveler who is frequently on the road and has a firm opinion about the travel industry and its impact on them,” explains Chris Lopinto, president and co-founder of ExpertFlyer.com. “The survey offers some insight into the mindset of the business traveler, what they thought about their experiences in 2015 and more importantly, their thoughts for the year ahead.”
Engaged frequent travelers don’t think air travel is getting better, and are at least occasionally delayed. But club lounges are getting better, airport wifi is getting better, and net net the airport experiences is better than it used to be.
Business travelers mostly fly domestic, with Europe second, and top destinations are New York, Los Angeles, and London.
American Airlines is the top airline pick over United, Delta, and other carriers. That’s no doubt the result of who is being surveyed — engaged, savvy travelers who know that over the past few years American has been more generous than competitors.
What’s more, ExpertFlyer itself has been an indispensible tool for American regulars — as the only source for American’s confirmed upgrade inventory, paid fare class availability, and email alerts for space. (Although it’s recently been improved for Star Alliance as well.)
Tidbits that stood out to me:
- I found it interesting that travelers prefer to relax and be entertained rather than work inflight. I find that I never quite get there on domestic flights, I’m always working. And that it’s only ultra long haul flying, or flights without internet, that I watch movies or read for pleasure.
- Uber and Lyft have overtaken taxis, but many business travel policies don’t yet allow for services like Airbnb.
- Some people really let loose on the road… and admit it. 15% admit to padding expense reports, the most common thing being treating friends to a reimbursable meal. And 15% admit to doing things like going to a strip club, watching in-room dirty movies, and even having affairs.