Industry Research

Summit Speaker: Business Travel Buyers Seek Better Service

Posted on May 11, 2016

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. --- A business travel expert appearing at the LCT Leadership Summit on May 23 sees business travel buyers more willing to pay slightly higher rates for the safer, better quality service that are staples of chauffeured ground transportation.

"Coming out of the economic woes of 2008-09, everything was so bottom line money focused," said Mark Williams, a partner at GoldSpring Consulting, in a pre-Summit interview. "That certainly applied in the travel arena. Many buyers told by senior mangagment to get service at lowest costs. Most organizations did not want to sacrifice service a lot, but maybe they were willing to take a small impact to make that happen. Now it's shifting back, where companies are starting to focus more on service again. Everyone still wants the right price, but we’re seeing buyers willing to pay a little more to get better service. You're seeing it across the board in travel. It’s refreshing to see that happening for many reasons, making it easier for the traveler."  

Williams will be part of a Business Roundtable session focusing on the Millennial business travel sector that will be held Monday, May 23 at 10 a.m. at the SLS South Beach Hotel conference site.

"My daughter is in the travel business and would only use Uber or Lyft," said Williams, whose clients include leading Fortune 250 companies. "That is a hurdle to overcome. Efforts in marketing need to be directed to that group and to Generation Z. The idea of a traditional taxi is anathema. They like the idea of Uber and Lyft; it’s all technology based. They never carry cash, don’t want to have to deal with that. They are reasonably smart about it. The door to them is through apps on the phone that are easy to use and give them a good deal to get the level of service they want. There is the potential to win them over; the job is to explain why price differentials exist and what they are getting, and why they should place great value with what they are getting."

The roundtable is one of several leading industry topics and trends to be presented at the annual Summit, a high-end executive-style think tank retreat that provides the industry's only deep-view forum for ideas, best practices and high-touch networking.

With its focus on bringing operators together, the Summit also features a healthy roster of social and recreational activities in the most enticing, tropical city in the world.



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