Business Travel Monitor Reveals Savings Opportunities for Air, Hotel Rates

San Diego — August 28, 2009 — Domestic and international airfare rates are at their lowest point since the second quarter of 2005, while hotel rates showed a modest decrease in Q2 of this year against the previous quarter, presenting significant opportunities for procurement and travel professionals to negotiate additional savings, according to North America Business Travel Monitor (BTM) data and analysis from American Express Business Travel.

The Business Travel Monitor, the industry's pricing benchmark published by eXpert Insights, the newly created research arm of Global Advisory Services, revealed that international and domestic airfare prices decreased year-over-year in the second quarter of 2009. Mixed results are seen in hotel rates year-over-year, where rates decreased internationally and remained flat domestically.

Signs point to corporations continuing to scale back on business travel spend and frequency. In addition, airlines are switching gears and are competing heavily to gain the business of a smaller pool of business travelers.

Highlights of the Q2 BTM included:

  • Average international airfares paid decreased 19 percent year-over-year;
  • Average domestic airfares paid decreased 18 percent year-over-year;
  • Average international booked hotel rates decreased 12 percent year-over-year, but increased 6 percent from Q1 to Q2;
  • Average domestic booked hotel rates remained flat year-over-year, but decreased 2 percent from Q1 to Q2;
  • Car rental rates posted slight decrease of 3 percent in Q2 2009 both from the previous quarter and the prior year.

International Airfares

Year-over-year Average International Airfares Paid in Q2

Q2 2005 - $1,609

Q2 2009 - $1,603

Quarterly 2008 and Q1 through Q2 2009 International Average Airfares Paid

Q2 2009 - $1603

Domestic Airfares

Year-over-year Average Domestic Airfares Paid in Q2

Q2 2009 - $212

Quarterly 2008 and Q1 through Q2 Domestic Average Airfares Paid

Q2 2009 - $212

International Booked Hotel Rates

International Average Booked Rates Paid

Q2 '09 - $241

Domestic Booked Hotel Rates

Domestic Average Booked Rates Paid

Q2 '09 - $150

Car Rental Rates

Average Daily Cost of Car Rental

Q2 '09 - $71