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New Research: Sustainability in Business Travel Becomes Priority

April 12, 2023
By Andrew Sheivachman
Categories Sustainability,Travel Management

As sustainability grows in importance for travel managers, leaders need better tools to track and manage the impact of emissions on the environment.

Spotnana partnered with the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) to explore the pain points travel managers face as they work to improve their travel programs. GBTA polled 151 U.S.-based travel managers for insight into the challenges they face improving their travel program in 2023.

Here are the top three trends defining sustainability in business travel in 2023. You can download the free report here.

Sustainability is important despite tracking gaps

The importance of sustainability in business travel has greatly increased in recent years, with 49% saying they expect it to be more important in 2023 compared to last year. 

Many programs, however, lack sufficient data about the sustainability impact of their travelers. More than two-in-five (44%) of U.S. travel programs don’t track flight emissions, while 59% don’t track car rental emissions and two-in-three don’t track hotel impacts.

This lack of data can make it difficult for travel managers to accurately report on the sustainability performance of their programs or set meaningful goals for improvement. Many companies have expressed a desire to understand the environmental impact of their travel programs but don’t have specific reporting requirements, KPIs, or carbon reduction goals.

Required tracking drives change

Travel managers who report on sustainability do so for a variety of reasons. 

Half of those who publicly report on sustainability in business travel do so due to a public disclosure requirement for their company. Others track sustainability to establish a baseline for their travel program or company (42%) or simply want an understanding of their carbon footprint despite no current goals (38%).

Many programs that aren’t required to publicly report on their sustainability are finally taking the first steps to understand the impact of their program.

Travel managers need better carbon tracking accuracy

Travel managers who do track sustainability, unfortunately, do not believe their travel-related emissions estimates are accurate.

Just 5% of travel managers believe their estimates are accurate, with about half (53%) believing their estimates are fairly accurate. This leaves 42% who believe they are receiving just a rough estimate or completely unusable data.

Travel management platforms and sustainability vendors need to do a better job providing travel managers with accurate carbon emission estimates that drive positive sustainable outcomes for travel programs.

Spotnana’s Travel-as-a-Service Platform provides unparalleled travel experiences and a suite of next-generation tools that make life easier for travel managers. To learn more about how travel managers are adapting their programs to succeed in 2023, download the full sustainability research report or get a demo of Spotnana today.