According to the latest report published by The GBTA Foundation (the Global Business Travel Association), business travel in Europe is expected to grow this and next year. This forecast was made on the basis of analysis of five main travel markets in the region Germany, France, the UK, Spain and Italy. The state of these markets is a kind of barometer of the entire Europe business travel health.
In 2014, total business travel spending is expected to add 4.9% comparing to 2013 and reach 147.1 billion euro. The spending will continue growing in 2015 as well, and will reach the growth of 6.6% or 156.8 billion euro for the next year. 2014 can be truly called the year of recovery for European business tourism as the results for the first six months of the year show the increase in spending of 4.3% in all five main markets of the region. This is the biggest gain since 2010. Other destinations, such as the UK, Spain, or Sweden, also post improving results for the first half of 2014.
Naturally, business travel growth depends on the growth of the European economy in general. Current situation remains challenging with many problems like high unemployment rate, low confidence rate, and slowly improving domestic demand. Still, the Euro Area GDP is expected to add 0.9% in 2014 and 1.7% in 2015, and that will surely affect business travelers. After a long period of decline there are definite signs of recovery in Europe, and increased business activity naturally means more business travelling.
If analyzing on a country basis, total business spending in Germany estimated 10.4 billion euro in the second quarter of 2014. That is 7.5% more than during the same period of 2013. The business travel is expected to add 7.4% in 2014 and 10.8% in 2015. The UK, the second highest business travel spending country, is expected add 5% in 2013 and 6% in 2015. In 2013, the total business travel spending in the country estimated £26.5 billion. French business travel spending for the second quarter of 2014 estimated 6.6 billion euro. Even though the country is experiencing certain economic difficulties, the growth of business spending is expected to estimate 3.3% in 2014 and 4.6% in 2015. Spain and Italy are expected to add around 4.6% in 2014 and 4.6% and 6.7% in 2015 respectively.