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Business travel poll 2003: Flight to service

Trends in travel are pushing quality service and cost-efficient processes to the forefront.

Full travel poll results: Favourite hotels | Favourite airlines

THE BUSINESS TRAVEL industry is struggling to break free from an assumption that it has adopted a reactionary, defensive posture because of recent, frustrating developments. There are signs of this in every corner of an industry that is notoriously slow to adapt; measures being put into place show that a true effort is being made to change for the better.

There are multiple sides to this industry, but none with so much power as the corporations managing and initiating travel programmes. The procurement officers and purchasing managers are the ones who select the travel suppliers and benefits that are available to the customer. Travellers themselves can help shape these services through their own demands. More and more these demands lean towards options designed to enhance their productivity while shaving budgets for their companies.

This may seem an intuitive task for the airline and hospitality industry, but increasing options while reducing costs is no small feat. Indeed, it signals a shift away from such trends as no-frills airlines competing on cost alone: despite the savings to the traveller's company, a higher level of service is necessary.

The

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