Operations

Business Travelers Lose Too Much Time Sitting in Traffic

Posted on August 1, 2007 by LCT Staff - Also by this author - About the author

PARSIPPANY, N.J. — Flight delays and cancellations aren't the only problems that cost travelers valuable work time on business trips. Significant time is also wasted in motor vehicles, a survey of business travelers shows.

Business travelers who rent autos often waste an average of 1.5 hours per trip stuck in traffic, getting lost, and waiting to pay tolls, according to the survey, which Avis released at the National Business Travel Association's (NBTA) annual convention in Boston. More than 80% of 6,300 Avis customers who responded to the survey say they spend an average of 44 minutes stuck in traffic during a three-day business trip. At least half of those who responded say another half an hour is wasted getting lost, and 12 minutes go down the drain while in line to pay tolls.

"Any lost time on the road is a productivity issue for companies," says Caleb Tiller, spokesman for the NBTA, which represents about 2,500 travel managers and suppliers. "When employees are on the road, companies want them working — not sitting in traffic."

Survey respondents predictably said that flight and airport security delays waste the most time, but the survey showed what other time can be lost, Avis officials say. "A lot of people focus on the delays of getting to a destination, but there's a fairly substantial amount of productivity that gets lost after you arrive," Avis spokesman John Barrows said.

Avis says additional products it rents to customers, such as electronic toll-collection devices and a navigation system that provides alternate routes in traffic, can help customers avoid wasting time on the road. Rivals also rent navigation systems and toll-collection devices.

Mark Doyle, an asset protection consultant in Fruitland Park, Fla., says he loses at least an hour a day stuck in traffic and "much more" time if visiting multiple clients. "Cities like Houston, Chicago, Los Angeles, and Detroit can be real bad some days, a real waste of time on a business trip," he says.

Source: USA Today

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