Although the business travel industry agrees that travel is picking up again, it is still necessary to identify the nuances of a variable geometry dynamic. This is confirmed by figures from a study published on 3 November by International SOS. The specialist in health and safety risk management has based its analysis on the support of a hundred or so international companies in France to draw up a picture of a multi-speed recovery.

Certainly, at the domestic level, professionals have been back on the road for several months already. According to the data shared by International SOS, 86% of companies…

If the players in the business travel industry agree on a recovery in travel, it is still necessary to identify the nuances of a variable geometry dynamic. This is confirmed by figures from a study published on 3 November by International SOS. The specialist in health and safety risk management has based its analysis on the support of a hundred or so international companies in France to draw up a picture of a multi-speed recovery.

Certainly, at the domestic level, professionals have been back on the road for several months already. According to data shared by International SOS, 86% of companies have resumed travel in France. And from this point of view, SMEs have played a crucial role, as Bruno Dierickx, marketing and sales director of Thalys, recently testified. ” More agile, with sometimes more flexible travel policies, but also with a strong need to reconnect with their teams, suppliers and regional locations, small and medium-sized companies have paved the way for this recovery since the third quarter of 2020,” say the authors of the International SOS study. Conversely, the return to mobility would be slowed down within large groups by the persistence of teleworking rules and travel policies that are still limited to what is strictly necessary.

If we were to compare the dynamics of business travel at a national level among the international companies supported by International SOS, France comes out on top

However, the French business travel industry seems to consider itself privileged according to the study published by International SOS: ” If one were to compare the dynamics of business travel at a national level among the international companies supported by International SOS, France comes out on top, followed by China, whose national travel volume has increased fourfold compared to the pre-Covid-19 period, followed by the United States, Spain and Russia “, nsay the authors of the report.

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International travel still hampered by formalities and restrictions

Unsurprisingly, long-distance travel remains much more affected: ” With the total number of trips down by 82% compared to the pre-Covid period, travel restrictions and particularly restrictive health formalities are limiting companies’ visibility and weighing heavily on travel choices,” points out the International SOS report. The report estimates that business travel now requires eight times more preparation work upstream. Therefore, each simplification of procedures seems to create an incentive for business travellers. This is illustrated by the American example, whose reopening on 8 November has obviously aroused great enthusiasm in the French market: ” If we take a closer look at the evolution of business travel by French companies in the United States, it has multiplied by 2.4 between April and September 2021. Since the announcement of the lifting of travel restrictions on November 8, 2021, travel intentions to the US have increased by 40%. The trend has accelerated with the precision of an effective opening on 8 November 2021 “, underlines International SOS.