The business travel industry is a constantly-changing network of corporations, exterior factors, and individual stakeholders. Remaining in touch with the latest industry news and travel trends is a crucial aspect of maximizing the efficiency of your company’s travel program.

Business travel has seen a back-and-forth year of growth throughout 2019 due to declining rates of investment and international trade conflicts, and 2020 industry trend predictions call for difficulty ahead. We’ve isolated several key metrics that will impact business travel throughout next year.

North America

North American air pricing is expected to increase by approximately 2%. Although North American markets boast strong economies and improving infrastructure, renegotiated union contracts and increased ancillary fees may account for increased prices in the region.

Hotel pricing in North America is expected to increase 2.3%, as providers attempt to tackle cancellation policy concerns and manage high occupancy rates.


The European business travel market is currently experiencing the benefits of embracing NDC, while new fares and regional competition are making changes in the local economy. Like the Middle East and Africa, Europe is expected to experience changes ranging from a small decrease or a several-percent increase in its air pricing.

Hotel pricing is expected to increase from .7-2.5%, as the eastern European hospitality market grows and corporate rate caps are implemented in large markets.


Air pricing in Asia is expected to grow 1.3% in 2020 due to burgeoning demand in China and India. New infrastructure and secondary markets are appearing as the travel economy in the region grows.

Hotel pricing will also increase in Asia as demand rises and dynamic rates are increasingly preferred, with major sporting events attracting an influx of tourists from around the world.

Central/South America

Increased competition due to legislative changes in Central and South America will drive air pricing down an estimated 1.6 percent in 2020, as demand and industry bandwidth increase in the region.

Central America welcomed more than 10 new chain hotels in early 2019, and growth in the hospitality sector is expected to continue. Hotel prices in Central and South America are expected to experience a modest decrease of less than 1%.

Global Notes

Travelers will likely see a 1-2% rise in international airfare and a 1-3% rise in international hotel rates.

There are several key markets to watch in conjunction with these generalized trends. The Rugby World Cup and the 2020 Summer Olympics, to be held next autumn and summer, respectively, will boost traveler traffic in Japan. These major sporting events will also spur an increase in hotel inventory.

The recent opening of Istanbul New Airport, now the world’s largest airport, and the expansion of Cairo Airport, will effect travel patterns and volume in the Middle East. The change in air pricing for the Middle East and Africa, however, remains unclear, with a small decrease or a several-percent increase possible. Hotel pricing in these regions is expected to increase by 2.5% at most.

Ground transportation pricing is expected to increase by 1% globally, as international tourism rates continue to rise and the sharing economy evolves.

Jimmy Davidson

Written by Jimmy Davidson