GBTA, American Express Release First-Ever Global Business Traveler Sentiment Index

In May, the GBTA Foundation and American Express teamed up to bring you a first-of-its-kind study looking into how U.S. business travelers feel about their travel experience and how those feelings affect their actual behaviors related to travel. Today the two companies are back with an all-new global outlook.

The first-ever GBTA Global Business Traveler Sentiment Index™ in partnership with American Express aims to understand travel trends in Australia, Brazil, Canada, Germany, Japan,  Mexico, United Kingdom, and the United States. It again examines how business travelers feel about their travel experience and how those feelings affect their actual behaviors related to travel.


The Index is comprised of seven key components to get a feel for the overall business traveler experience:

  • Overall Trip Experience and Trip Friction
  • Travel Management Policy Friction
  • Expense Tracking and Management
  • Business Travel Safety
  • Social Media Experience
  • Technology for Business Travel
  • Corporate/Macroeconomic Environment

The Business Traveler Sentiment Index provides a snapshot of the attitudes and experiences of business travelers about what is working and what isn’t when it comes to travel. This helps travel providers address areas of concern and help attract and retain loyalty from their customers.

Four key findings emerged from the Index:

  • Technology continues to transform the business travel experience.

As employees travel for business, they need to stay connected – meaning mobile devices and applications play a more important role than ever.  Travelers, across the board, believe that Wi-Fi is “vital to their work productivity” – Mexico (90 percent); Brazil (87 percent); Canada (83 percent); United States (81 percent); United Kingdom (80 percent); Australia (75 percent); Germany (70 percent) and Japan (52 percent).


  • Despite overall satisfaction with travel, a number pain points have emerged, causing deep frustration among business travelers – such as getting through security and high airline fees.

Business travelers, while generally satisfied with their trip experience, encounter several “pain points” that cause ongoing frustration, including airline delays, trouble getting through airport security, high airline fees and lack of Wi-Fi.

  • Travelers are optimistic about the health of their industry, though less hopeful about the overall state of their country’s economy.

Travelers remain concerned about the health of the overall economy, but tend to be much more optimistic about their industry. At least half of travelers from Mexico (65 percent), the U.S. (54 percent), the UK (52 percent) and Canada (50 percent) report that the overall health of their industry is excellent.

  • The level of satisfaction in business travel varies widely by country. Business travelers from Mexico are the most satisfied, while travelers from Japan are the least satisfied, among countries surveyed.

Finally, major differences in Business Traveler Sentiment emerged on a country-by-country basis. Business travelers from Mexico, for instance, score higher than average across every Index component. Meanwhile, travelers in the United States, Australia and the UK all score just above average on overall business travel sentiment, while those from Germany, Brazil and Canada score just below average. Japanese business travelers are the least satisfied across all Index components, except social media experience.

Stay tuned to the blog for a deeper dive into the study findings.

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