Rental cars and taxis are still the most popular methods of ground transportation during business travel.
One of the essential costs companies have to factor into business travel expenses is ground transportation. Whether it's estimating how much will be spent on cab fares or determining whether a trip is worth renting a car for, finding the safest and most affordable method for traffic navigation during a business trip continues to be an area of interest for employers, especially with the latest trends taking place in the ride-sharing industry. A recent study looked into the business travel ground transportation trends of 2015, as well as the perceptions of where field is headed.
GBTA researches ground transportation usage for businesses
In a study conducted by the Global Business Travel Association, the latest trends and patterns of ground transportation methods used during business travel were measured and evaluated. According to the results of the study, the researchers found that rental cars and taxis remain the most popular ways employees get around on business trips, with 36 percent and 24 percent of companies financing these methods, respectively. Chauffeured transportation followed the two with 13 percent, and ride-sharing companies, the latest trend in ground transportation, rounded out the top four with 11 percent.
The researchers also evaluated the primary factors and considerations that went into how companies chose their respective modes of ground transportation. Employers listed passenger and vehicle safety as the two biggest concerns when selecting how their employees get around, as well as time effectiveness and convenience of payment methods. These factors are what make employers both hesitant and eager to begin using ride-sharing companies. The study results indicated that nearly one-fourth of employees say their company will not cover costs went towards ride-sharing companies, primarily due to liability and safety issues. However, companies such as Uber and Lyft continue to offer easier options when it comes to both time effectiveness and payment convenience, two important considerations companies have about business travel ground transportation.
"One in four companies won't allow employees to use ride-sharing transportation."
Michael W. McCormick, Executive Director and COO of the GBTA, elaborated on how companies are still skeptical about providing their workers with ride-sharing modes of transportation, despite this particular industry's significant growth in usage and revenue over recent years.
"Our research shows one in four (24 percent) travel buyers say their company does not allow their business travelers to use ride-sharing companies, by far the highest percentage for any form of ground transportation," McCormick said in a statement. "In addition, a large number of companies still have not adopted policies around ride-sharing companies, revealing a need for education about the benefits and the risks. GBTA hopes this study is the start to closing that knowledge gap and we welcome an open and constructive dialogue on this topic."
The study remains an interesting starting point into the future of ride-sharing integration with business travel. While Uber and Lyft both offer specific deals for company participation, it might still take some time for more companies to open up to this new and still-evolving trend of ground transportation.