Thursday, 14 June 2012

IS UK PLC TRAVELLING ITS WAY OUT OF RECESSION?

I read good news yesterday. Very good news. The UK appears to be travelling its way out of the double dip recession.


I've always believed that when the going gets tough, businesses should not cut back, but continue to invest in business development to shore up their futures. And, in my opinion, there's no better way to secure new business and maintain strong relationships with existing clients than through face to face meetings. 

According to ABTN, a study carried out by GBTA predicts a 0.7% rise in business travel spending by UK-based businesses this year compared to declines within the rest of Europe. But what's really interesting is where they are travelling from and to.

Delve into the monthly BAA Traffic and Business Commentary for May and you'll see that traffic through Heathrow was down 0.6% last month, while traffic through Glasgow rose by 10%, Aberdeen 16% and Edinburgh 2.2. Why? Well the ‘from’ could very well be linked to my blog on Monday about business travellers using regional airports to connect to long haul flights at European hubs outside of the UK to avoid paying APD.

And if you look at the ‘to’, you’ll find that flights to the North Atlantic rose by 1.6% yet flights to Europe dropped 9%, which implies that we may be avoiding the Eurozone during its ongoing crisis, but we are still flying to see our friends in North America in the hope of doing business with companies and countries that we already know and feel safe with. 

David Chapple is event director of the Business Travel Show - he’d love to hear what you think about this topic - contact him on Twitter @btshowlondon   

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