The demands of business travelers are continually evolving. Research shows that 3 out of 5 employees admit their current travel schedule falls short of their expectations. In most cases (82%), this isn’t due to a lack of business travel at their company but the fact that travel is now on “fewer shoulders”. This is likely due to companies combining business trips to reduce corporate spending in order to combat rising operational costs.
While this is understandable given the current unstable economic situation, employees are continuing to express a desire to travel - with Expedia’s 2023 Traveler Value Index highlighting how 85% of people are looking forward to their next work trip. It seems providing these opportunities can directly influence satisfaction in their careers, helping companies not only retain, but also attract, talent.
Companies must also consider the benefits of business travel - developing client relationships, increasing sector knowledge, and improving business reach. So, it seems investment in travel is worthwhile, but how can you squeeze out the maximum value? Optimizing the accommodation you choose for employees based on their type of trip can potentially increase traveler comfort and, therefore, motivation and productivity. When done correctly, it can also streamline business travel expenses.
Here’s a quick guide into the different accommodation types on offer to business travelers:
Serviced apartment: These fully furnished apartments offer the ‘whole package’ including bedrooms, bathrooms, a kitchen area, laundry facilities, and somewhere to park a car. Because of these amenities, serviced apartments are suitable for both short and long-term stays but are most beneficial for the latter, including employees on long business trips or those requiring temporary accommodation during a relocation.
Aparthotel: Not to be confused with what hotels offer, aparthotels have kitchen facilities and are often more spacious. Because of this, aparthotels are beneficial for those on extended stay trips since they can be cheaper than your standard hotel and can give guests a more ‘homelike’ experience. This may be a perfect option for those looking to extend their work trip to include leisure time, something 76% of business travelers are planning to do in the following 12 months.
Condo: Short for condominium, a condo refers to a unit in a building in which the surrounding units are separately owned. A benefit of choosing a condo for business trips is that it often has common areas such as co-working spaces which your employees can use - making this housing option great for longer stays, blended travel trips, or relocations.
Hotel: Perfect for shorter stays, hotel rooms are often smaller than other accommodation types and are standardized but can include meals - which brings convenience to those on a tight schedule. Hotels are also usually in prime locations, offering great proximity to the city, meeting locations, or conference events.
Short-term rental: This furnished, self-contained housing option provides homelike amenities, including kitchen areas, living spaces, and laundry facilities. Short-term rentals are great for mid-long term stays (up to 30 days), such as those working remotely, or those needing temporary accommodation while they find a permanent home during relocation.
__Why specialized housing is important __
It may seem like a trivial thing, but different accommodation options offer business travelers a range of experiences. Choosing specialized housing based on length of stay, proximity needs, amenity needs, ect, can impact a traveler’s trip. For example, a hotel located near where a traveler is meeting a client is highly convenient and can save on transport time and costs. But, if the traveler is staying for longer than a couple of days, they may need more living space for comfort and practicality (such as remote working from the accommodation), and so may prefer a serviced apartment, condo, or aparthotel.
If your employee is on a tight schedule, you may want to look out for hassle-free check-in options, such as those offered by short-term rentals and other tech-powered accommodations, over those with reception desks. If employees are traveling to a different time zone, choose housing with 24-hour guest services so the traveler is supported even when you’re unable to communicate with them.
Choosing the right accommodation can also affect business travel costs and expenses. If the traveler is staying for a long period of time, due to relocation, for example, they’ll benefit from having access to laundry and cooking facilities. Without these, the traveler will have more expenses to claim back from the business, not to mention the inconvenience of having to navigate a new destination whenever they need to eat or clean their clothes.
If this all sounds a little complicated, don’t worry, online booking tools take the guesswork out of planning and booking business accommodation. Simply input your employee's needs, including preferences and amenities, and the platform will create a shortlist of suitable options.
To get the most out of your business trip investments, choose the right type of housing for your employees. Online booking tools simplify the research process and can offer suitable and affordable options based on the traveler’s requirements.
At 3Sixty, the business travel industry’s most secure and intuitive accommodation platform, we offer over one million quality accommodations around the world, including serviced apartments, short-term rentals, hotels, aparthotels, and condos.
Start optimizing employees' business trips and find specialized housing on our online booking tool.