Description

This report provides comprehensive and current information and analysis of the work and travel market including work and travel market size, work and travel market share, anticipated market forecast, relevant market segmentation, and industry trends for the work and travel market in the US.

Current work and travel market landscape

Two thirds of business travelers say that they use work-related travel to scout out locations for future leisure travel, which demonstrates how business and leisure travel have been converging. In the same way that “work-life balance” is becoming “work-life blend,” business travel is becoming more leisurely. To this end, the popular prepandemic leisure travel is being joined by workcationing and digital nomading as options to mix work and play.

Digital nomad market size, market share, and key industry trends

  • Recovery will be drawn out. Despite strong growth over the past year, business travel revenue will slow as economic uncertainty and rising costs put a damper on travel. The business travel market is expected to reach prepandemic levels around 2025-26.
  • Business and leisure blur further. Remote working has enabled business travelers to be more flexible with mixing business and leisure on work trips. A majority of business travelers scout a destination for future vacations, so destinations have to cater to the sensibilities of both business and leisure travelers.
  • The business traveler mind-set is the traveler mind-set. Issues of safety, sustainability and equality are as important for business travelers as they are for leisure travelers; providers in this sector can’t afford to underdeliver on growing demands.

Future market trends in work and travel

Naturally, rising costs and economic uncertainty cast a pall over the future of business travel. Should the economy fall into recession, companies are likely to make budget cuts where they can. While COVID-19 proved that many businesses could conduct operations virtually, mass layoffs spurred by recession could give employers more leverage to force employees back into the office. This would reduce the amount of workcationers and digital nomads. This means that inflation and recession are the biggest threats facing an industry that earned $232.1 billion in 2022 and one that is looking to the next few years to make full recovery to prepandemic revenue.

Sans a prolonged economic downturn, the biggest opportunities lie with providers that can make the shift from thinking of business travelers as business-minded to being more like leisure travelers. This can generate the all-important loyalty that is often missing from Millennial business travelers, who make up the biggest share of travelers by far.

Read on to discover more about the work and travel consumer market, read our US Sustainability and Travel Market Report 2022, or take a look at our other Holidays and Travel research reports.

Quickly understand workcationing

  • How different segments of business travelers behave on their trips.
  • What travel providers can do to accommodate business travelers.
  • Trends in the industry that can help providers make the switch from business-minded to leisure-minded.
  • How to support and reward the most-frequent business travelers.

Covered in this digital nomad market report

Brands include: Zoom, Microsoft Teams, NomadMania.

Expert analysis from a specialist in the field

This report, written by Mike Gallinari, a leading analyst in the Travel and Leisure sector, delivers in-depth commentary and analysis on digital nomad research to highlight current trends and add expert context to the numbers.

Calling someone a ‘business traveler’ is telling only part of the story. People traveling for business are increasingly infusing leisure into their trips. Moreover, many are auditioning their business destinations for potential future vacations. Striking the balance of accommodating a traveler’s business needs while appealing to leisure travelers is one of the challenges facing business travel providers.

Mike Gallinari, Travel and Leisure Analyst
Mike Gallinari
Senior Travel and Leisure Analyst

Table of Contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • This Report looks at the following areas
        • Definition
          • Market context
          • Executive Summary

              • Top takeaways
                • Market overview
                  • Figure 1: Total US sales and fan chart forecast of business travel, at current prices, 2017-27
                  • Figure 2: Outlook for business travel, 2022-27
                • Opportunities and challenges
                  • Opportunity: Business travelers are scouting for leisure
                    • Figure 3: Attitudes toward business travel, by frequency, 2022
                  • Opportunity: Frequent travelers should be leisure targets
                    • Figure 4: Activities during business travel, by frequency, 2022
                  • Opportunity: Business travelers are looking for greener options
                    • Figure 5: Attitudes toward sustainability – Net agree, by traveler type, 2022
                  • Opportunity: Bring a sense of identity to business events
                    • Challenge: Some business travelers feel vulnerable
                      • Figure 6: Attitudes toward safety – Net agree, by traveler type, 2022
                    • Challenge: Serving business flyers goes beyond the plane
                      • Figure 7: Business flight priorities, by traveler frequency, 2022
                    • Challenge: Business travelers don’t leave their conscience at home
                      • Key consumer insights
                        • Business travelers like their trips
                          • Figure 8: Opinions of business travel, 2022
                        • Conferences are destinations’ time to shine
                          • Figure 9: Reasons for business travel, by frequency, 2022
                      • Market Size and Forecast

                        • Business travel recovery slows as it bumps against boundaries
                          • Figure 10: Total US sales and fan chart forecast of business travel, at current prices, 2017-27
                          • Figure 11: Total US sales and forecast of business travel, at current prices, 2017-27
                      • Market Factors

                        • Recession threatens to disrupt recovery
                          • Figure 12: GDP change from previous period, Q1 2007-Q2 2022
                        • High employment makes travel a perk in hiring, retention
                          • Figure 13: Unemployment and underemployment, 2007-22
                        • Tepid worker response to employer encouragement to go back to the office
                          • Rising travel costs can dissuade the budget-conscious
                            • Figure 14: Consumer Price Index change from previous period, 2007-22
                        • Trends Affecting Work and Travel

                          • Trend Drivers
                            • Rights
                              • Surroundings
                                • Identity
                                  • Trends in action: Flexible Spaces
                                  • The Business Traveler – Fast Facts

                                    • What’s the biggest trend affecting the nature of business travel?
                                      • Why are professionals traveling for business?
                                        • What do people think of business travel?
                                          • What do travelers do when they’re not working?
                                            • What do business travelers need from airlines and hotels?
                                              • What value do business travelers get from their trips?
                                                • Are travelers happy with their corporate policies?
                                                  • How do travelers feel about safety and sustainability?
                                                  • Business Traveler Demographics

                                                    • The gap between business and leisure is narrowing
                                                      • Figure 15: Business traveler types, 2022
                                                    • Business travelers tend toward younger and higher income
                                                      • Figure 16: Business traveler demographics, by traveler types, 2022
                                                  • Reasons for Business Travel

                                                    • Business travel is enduring, though MICE looks to recover
                                                      • Figure 17: Reasons for business travel, 2022
                                                    • Leisure is a goal for pretty much all business travelers
                                                      • Figure 18: Reasons for business travel, by traveler type, 2022
                                                    • Frequent travelers are auditioning a variety of destinations
                                                      • Figure 19: Reasons for business travel, by frequency, 2022
                                                  • Opinions of Business Travel

                                                    • Overall, travelers like their business trips
                                                      • Figure 20: Opinions of business travel, 2022
                                                    • Making business more fun makes for happier travelers
                                                      • Figure 21: Opinions of business travel, by traveler type, 2022
                                                    • Frequent travelers recognize travel’s cost and opportunity
                                                      • Figure 22: Opinions of business travel, by frequency, 2022
                                                  • Business Travel Activities

                                                    • Tell travelers where to eat, but make the hotel bar the end destination
                                                      • Figure 23: Activities during business travel, 2022
                                                    • Existing trends of locality and authenticity apply to business, as well
                                                      • Figure 24: Activities during business travel, by traveler type, 2022
                                                    • Frequent travelers are very tourism-minded
                                                      • Figure 25: Activities during business travel, by frequency, 2022
                                                      • Figure 26: NomadMania tweet, 2022
                                                  • Business Flying and Accommodations

                                                    • Offer deals on wi-fi and seat selection to attract business flyers
                                                      • Figure 27: Business flight priorities, 2022
                                                    • Frequent travelers care about both the flight and the airport
                                                      • Figure 28: Business flight priorities, by traveler frequency, 2022
                                                    • Hotel guests frequently aren’t strictly business
                                                      • Figure 29: Business accommodation priorities, 2022
                                                    • Guests seek efficiency and leisure options
                                                      • Figure 30: TURF analysis – Business travel accommodation desires, 2022
                                                    • Relaxation matters more as business becomes more casual
                                                      • Figure 31: Business accommodation priorities, by traveler type, 2022
                                                    • More-frequent travelers judge hotels for now and for later
                                                      • Figure 32: Business accommodation priorities, by traveler frequency, 2022
                                                  • Attitudes toward Business Travel

                                                    • When travelers hit the road, it’s with an eye toward leisure
                                                      • Figure 33: Attitudes toward business travel – Nets, 2022
                                                    • Companies should lean into business travel as a perk
                                                      • Figure 34: Attitudes toward business travel – Net agree, by traveler type, 2022
                                                    • Frequent travelers travel because they love it
                                                      • Figure 35: Attitudes toward business travel – Net agree, by frequency, 2022
                                                  • Attitudes toward Corporate Travel Practices

                                                    • Travelers like their systems, but there’s always greener grass
                                                      • Figure 36: Attitudes toward corporate travel policies – Nets, 2022
                                                    • Pro-travel policies will attract, maintain top employees
                                                      • Figure 37: Attitudes toward corporate travel policies – Net agree, by traveler type, 2022
                                                    • Accommodations could use a freshening up for frequent travelers
                                                      • Figure 38: Attitudes toward corporate travel policies – Net agree, by frequency, 2022
                                                  • Attitudes toward Safety and Sustainability

                                                    • Safety and sustainability are desired business travel features
                                                      • Figure 39: Attitudes toward safety and sustainability – Nets, 2022
                                                    • Safety needs to be assured for the most leisurely business travelers
                                                      • Figure 40: Attitudes toward safety and sustainability – Net agree, by traveler type, 2022
                                                    • Frequent travelers are the most safety- and sustainability-minded
                                                      • Figure 41: Attitudes toward safety and sustainability – Net agree, by frequency, 2022
                                                  • Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

                                                    • Data sources
                                                      • Sales data
                                                        • Forecast
                                                          • Consumer survey data
                                                            • Abbreviations and terms
                                                              • Abbreviations
                                                                • Terms
                                                                • Appendix – The Market

                                                                    • Figure 42: Total US business travel spending, at inflation-adjusted prices, 2017-27

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