Global travel pricing set to slow down in 2020; flights to rise 1.2%, hotels 1.3%

July, 31/2019 - 12:22
Global travel pricing set to slow down in 2020; flights to rise 1.2%, hotels 1.3%

MINNEAPOLIS/ ALEXANDRIA,USA - EQS - 31 July 2019 - After posting sharp rises in 2019, prices in the globaltravel industry are likely to slow in 2020, with flights rising a modest 1.2%, hotelsrising only 1.3%, and rental car rates up 1%, according to the sixth annualGlobal Travel Forecast, published today by CWT and GBTA. While the globaleconomy is doing well overall -- and expected to grow a solid 3.6% in 2020 -- araft of uncertainties are set to put a damper on pricing.

"The risks and ambiguity have increased over the pastfew months -- not least the threat of escalating trade wars, the impact of Brexit,possible oil supply shocks, and the growing likelihood of recession," said KurtEkert, CWT's President and CEO. "This forecast will help travel buyers make theright decisions in an increasingly challenging environment."

Released today by the Global Business TravelAssociation, the voice of the global business travel industry, and CWT, the B2B4Etravel management platform, the 2020 Global Travel Forecast uses data generatedby CWT Solutions Group, to give an early look at the trends and developmentsthat will shape the business travel industry in the year ahead.

"Technological advancements and an increasinglyvolatile economic and political landscape across the globe have changed the waytoday's travel buyers need to do their jobs," said Scott Solombrino, GBTA COOand Executive Director. "This annual forecast provides insights into the keydrivers forcing these shifting priorities and gives a road map for travelbuyers looking to plan their 2020 travel programs."


Asia Pacific

Air: 1.3%                   Hotel:1.3%              Ground: 0.5%


Asia'sexpansion has slowed down due to worsening US-China relations, tighter globalfinancial conditions, and natural disasters. But the region remains the mostdynamic, with steady GDP growth, benign inflation, and a sense of optimism.


·      Air:In AsiaPacific, the shutdown of India-based Jet Airways' operations in April created agap in the market for some key routes, and the reduced competition has meanthigher airfares -- but with other airlines adding capacity to fill the vacuum,fares have begun to normalize.

·      Hotel:Asia'shospitality industry is booming with hotel investment volumes predicted to grow15% year-on-year. Japan will host the Rugby World Cup later this year, and theOlympic and Paralympic Games in 2020, which will boost visitor numbers to theregion. The Japanese hotel market is seeing a sharp increase in supply toaccommodate the anticipated surge in visitors to the country during theseevents.

·      Ground: In China, steady demand andincreased competition will hurt car suppliers. Across Asia Pacific,ride-sharing is booming, with many companies allowing their employees to usethese services for business travel. Providers like Didi Chuxing, Grab, Go-Jekand Ola are pursuing aggressive expansion plans, while also taking steps to putmore stringent safety measures in place.


Europe, Middle East & Africa

Eastern Europe:                 Air:-0.2%                 Hotel: 0.7%              Ground: 1.5%

Western Europe:                Air: 0.5%                  Hotel:0.7%              Ground: 0.5%

Middle East & Africa:        Air:  2.2%                  Hotel: 2.5%              Ground: 0.5%


The InternationalMonetary Fund (IMF) expects steady growth, ranging from 0.3% in the Middle Eastto 1.6% in Europe, and 3.6% in Africa. Across Europe, labor unrest, climatechange protests, global trade wars, rising oil prices and regional terrorismall have the potential to cause a slowdown.


·      Air:Istanbul'snew airport, one of the largest in the region, will likely change flows betweenEurope and Asia, providing an alternative stopover point for flights to Chinaand Eastern Asia.

·      Hotel: Denmark and Egypt are both countries towatch, with hotel prices in Denmark expected to fall next year. On the otherhand, Egypt's rates are on the up - projected to rise by 4.7% - as its economysettles down after a period of unrest.

·      Ground: Eastern Europe's franchisemodel for rental car businesses will see slightly higher growth of 1.5%, due tosupply and demand in the region. Rail prices still vary greatly across EMEA dueto inconsistent regulation.


Latin America

Air: -1.6%                 Hotel:-0.4%             Ground: 1%


Economicactivity in Latin America continues to grow -- albeit slower than anticipated --and is expected to rise 2.5% in 2020. A volatile political and economicsituation in some of the largest economies like Argentina, Mexico and Brazil willhurt prospects.


·      Air:Given thelong distances, a growing middle class, and low market penetration of airtravel, there are many opportunities, and airlines are making the best of them.Since 2017, several new carriers have entered the market and low-cost carriershave gained significant share in Brazil, Mexico and Colombia.

·      Hotel: Following a steady declinein new hotels from a 2015-2016 peak, things may be picking up, with Mexicoleading the way. More than 10 new corporate chain hotels opened in the regionin the first quarter of 2019 with growth set to continue throughout 2020.Properties in Mexico and across Latin America are likely to continue to cutprices.

·      Ground: A slight increase for rentalcars is driven by growing demand in Brazil, the region's biggest economy.Rental car companies report a cultural shift towards sharing cars rather thanowning them, and growth in tourism is also boosting the industry.


North America

Air: 2.3%                   Hotel:2.3%              Ground: 1%


Whilethe US economy is thriving, there is growing uncertainty, due to tariffs andtrade wars. US GDP growth is set to slow to 2.1% in 2019, and slow further in2020 and 2021, to 2% and 1.8%, respectively.


·      Air:Flight pricesare expected to rise, reflecting the strong economies of the US and Canada. Mostairlines are looking to ancillary fees as a way to stay competitive, so costsof services like Wi-Fi and lounge access may be up for negotiation forcorporate travelers.

·      Hotel: The hotel industry has seenslow, but steady growth. A gradual slowing will help rates return to normal,correcting the high prices seen in some of the major cities. Technology-focusedareas -- like San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle and Vancouver -- are still seeinggrowth. However, demand in these cities has been high for so long that priceshave risen too far -- and business travelers are staying further out in response.

·      Ground: Due to the nature oflong-term contracts, we are unlikely to see any upward trends in pricing until2021 or 2022. Traveler preferences are dictating a change in car preferences,shifting away from traditional sedans in favor of more versatile SUVs andtrucks.


For more detailed information, download the 2020 Global Travel Forecastnow.


Aboutthe 2020 Forecast

Theprojections in the 2020 Global Travel Price Forecast are based on:

  • A statistical model developed by GBTA with market and economic research firm, Rockport Analytics, that evaluates historical price behavior and forecasts future prices in the air, hotel and ground categories.
  • The market-specific expertise and travel industry knowledge of CWT and CWT Solutions Group personnel worldwide.
  • Information sourced from Moody's Analytics, the International Monetary Fund Research Department, the United Nations and other leading organizations.


Projectionsare based on transaction data from CWT's global client portfolio, includinganonymized client travel patterns, over the past ten years. Key macroeconomicand per-country indicators, such as current and expected GDP growth, theconsumer price index, unemployment rates and crude oil prices, were used in thestatistical model, as well as key supply-side drivers sourced from OAG and STRGlobal. All air statistics represent point of origin and include all triptypes.


More information

Learn moreabout the Global Travel Forecast and the price projects and trends that lieahead in 2020 during an educationsession at GBTA Convention 2019 on Monday, August 5 at 9:30 am CSTin room S504ab.


A webinar willalso be taking place for a deeper dive into the research findings featuringexperts from CWT, Rockport Analytics and GBTA. This session will take place onThursday, September 19 at 9:00 am CST. Registertoday.

About the Global Business Travel Association

The GlobalBusiness Travel Association (GBTA) is the world's premier business travel andmeetings trade organization headquartered in the Washington, D.C. area withoperations on six continents. GBTA's 10,000-plus members manage morethan $345 billion of global business travel and meetings expendituresannually. GBTA delivers world-class education, events, research, advocacy andmedia to a growing global network of more than 28,000 travel professionalsand 125,000 active contacts. To learn how business travel drives lastingbusiness growth, visit .

About CWT

CWT is a Business-to-Business-for-Employees (B2B4E) travel managementplatform. Companies and governments rely on us to keep their people connected --anywhere, anytime, anyhow -- and across six continents, we provide theiremployees with innovative technology and an efficient, safe and secure travel experience.Every single day, we look after enough travelers to fill more than 100,000hotel rooms, while our meetings and events division handles more than 100events every 24 hours.


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