Travel Trends

EIBTM Releases Latest Industry Research

- EIBTM's first ever 5 Year Trend Reports provide the industry with key research findings about trends and developments over the next five years in the conference, incentive and business travel sectors.

The reports also cover the impact of these changes and how best to respond to them. At the same time, EIBTM has published the Pocket Guide version of The EIBTM 2003 Industry Trends and Market Share Report, with updated findings in a concise booklet.

Rob Davidson, EIBTM Industry Analyst and Senior Lecturer in Business Travel and Tourism at the University of Westminster, has produced EIBTM's research reports for the last few years, and his first EIBTM 5 Year Trend Report will focus on Social and Political Trends including:

Key social and political trends which centre around work-life balance and the new world order:

The working population - more women, older workers, single households, multiculturalism, and same-sex couples, leading to the inclusion of family members and cultural sensitivity in event planning.

The work-life balance - more tele-working and portfolio careers, leading to a growing demand for networking meetings

Business practices to reflect more corporate social responsibility

The political landscape - from Eastern Europe's new accession countries, the world's best-performing region for equities, to the need for heightened security

Rob's next 5 Year Trend Report will cover Technology Trends and be available in March 2004. As a recent survey by the Convention Industry Council found, "More than 76 percent of meeting professionals rate technology know-how as the number one need in the meeting planning profession."

Key technology developments include:

Meeting planners' use of the Internet to window shop for venues and destinations is projected to increase by 23 % this year, according to the MPI/American Express FutureWatch 2003 Survey.

Use of the Internet to book venues is expected to rise by only 5%.

Wi-Fi technology used in audience response polling and response systems will allow meeting attendees to give instant feedback to speakers and event organisers, changing the dynamics of meetings and events for good.

In September 2004, Rob's 5 Year Economic Trends Report will focus on:

Key economic developments such as:

Emerging trading blocs and their impact on intra-regional business travel

Sectors of third world economy that will be driving demand for business events

The impact of China gaining prominence as a supplier of facilities and services

Outsourcing of business services to places like India and the shifts in patterns of consumption and services around the world.

Upbeat Outlook for EIBTM 2004

As EIBTM gears up to move to Barcelona, interest is gathering pace as the industry is drawn by a world class destination backed by a strong Spanish economy.

"Spain continued to be the second most visited country in the world after France according to the World Tourism Organisation data for 2002," Luis Diaz Alperi, president of the Spain Convention Bureau. "Now, in meetings tourism, Spain also occupies second position after the US, according to ICCA."

Latest Bank of Spain figures up to the end of June 2003 show a 4.4% rise of income from tourism in Spain to 16.14 million euros. Spain's economic growth, which is forecast to reach almost 2% in 2003 will lead to an accelerated demand for meetings and incentive travel, both domestic and outbound.

In addition, Spanish consultants Grup Integral indicated that the market for incentive trips, congresses and conventions has doubled in the last two years and the outgoing Spanish market is now estimated to be worth EURO30 million annually.

Recent research from Juan Carlos Martin, Visit Britian (formerly BTA), into the Outgoing Spanish Market for Incentive and Corporate Travel, confirms major growth in the outbound Spanish meetings and incentives sector over the past few years. Other findings include:

Larger Spanish companies organise between 5 and 10 incentives per year

Main sectors producing incentive industries for Spain are pharmaceutical, medical, automotive, construction, food, communications and finance

Companies who engage in meeting and incentive travel activity typically have a turnover of more than 20 million

Main producing cities are Madrid and Barcelona with Valencia and Bilbao being secondary markets

Average group size is between 40-80 people

Spouses often participate in corporate trips and average participant age is 25-40

Time of year for travel depends on destination but generally takes place during the Autumn and Spring (mainly February, March, April, May).

Lengths of trips are normally 3 nights/ 4 days or a long weekend for European destinations and 7-10 nights for long haul.

Traditional elements of culture, relaxation, shopping and sightseeing are the mainstay of corporate trips but special activity such as a gala dinner etc. is very sought after.

Health, well-being and spa themes are increasingly popular.

An incentive trip is often mixed with a meeting or conference element for tax reasons, hence the term 'Concentive'.

Destinations need to be new, original and fashionable, good hotel infrastructure, climate, culture, cuisine and plenty of things to do.

The EIBTM 5 Year Trends reports and Pocket Guide version of The EIBTM 2003 Industry Trends and Market Share Report are available on the EIBTM website.

Please visit www.eibtm.com and click on 'About EIBTM' & 'Industry Reports' for further information.

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