Why travellers are not using online booking tools

by Business Travel iQ | 06 June 2019

Adoption of tools is high but there are still some who think they can do better another way

New research from ACTE and American Express Global Business Travel shows that 86% of travel managers are using online booking tools in their organisations. The study, which was carried out among more than 200 travel managers between February and March, also shows that organisations are generally highly satisfied with their online booking tools.

When asked why their business travellers were not using the online booking tool, a worrying 39% said that it is because their travellers believe they can get a better deal elsewhere. The other reasons are shown in this week’s chart.

OBT bar chart-6.6.19

The issue may be a lack of communication. The research reveals that fewer than half (47%) of travel managers communicate regularly with employees about their booking tools. Some 8% of travel managers say their organisation has never communicated with employees about booking tools – not even during the onboarding process.

Online booking tools promise lower TMC transaction fees, cheaper travel as a result of a wider choice of content and visual guilt, encouraging travellers to use the preferred supplier. Communicating more with your travellers may just be your next savings opportunity.

Fitzgerald Draper, ACTE’s director of research, said, “Travel managers should be wary of evolving traveller expectations. The booking experience needs to be highly flexible and should look and feel like it does when they book personal travel.”

He added, “While customisation and finding the right fit are important facets of a company’s OBT selection, users must also understand the platform’s value and functionality. Travel managers should look for ways to market the selected tool to their travellers, including all the benefits that come with it.”

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