New Global Travel Forecast Indicates Increase in Travel Prices for 2019

August 22, 2018

The fifth annual Carlson Wagonlit Travel (CWT) and Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) Global Travel Forecast was released in late July.  According to the report, travel prices are expected to rise sharply in 2019 — something planners should be aware of when contracting hotels and planning for travel.

Globally, hotel prices are expected to rise by 3.7 percent and flights by 2.6 percent. In North America, hotel prices will go up 2.1 percent – 5 percent in Canada and 2.7 percent in the United States.

The report states that airfares are likely to become more expensive due to rising in oil prices, the competitive pressure from the shortage of pilots, potential trade wars and increasing fare segmentation to improve yield.

The North American price increase is projected to be just 1.8 percent, but the United States aviation market is expected to see capacity compression due to expanded fare fragmentation, with premium economy and basic economy reducing available seats, as carriers target margin improvement.

When it comes to ground transportation, the report indicates that ride-hailing apps such as Lyft and Uber will only continue to grow in popularity, while high-speed train travel will decrease. On-demand, shared, electric, and connected cars are expected to see an uptick in usage.  

The 2019 forecast also shows trends and developments projected to shape the business travel industry.

“The future of corporate travel can be summed up as accelerated personalization – with mobile technology, AI, machine learning and predictive analytics all playing their part,” said Kurt Ekert, president and CEO of Carlson Wagonlit Travel. “Success is tied to technology, with sophisticated data-crunching at the very heart of it.”

The projections in the 2019 Global Travel Price Forecast are based on:

  • A statistical model, developed by GBTA with market and economic research firm, Rockport Analytics, that evaluates historical price behavior and forecasts future price references.
  • The market-specific expertise and travel industry knowledge of CWT and CWT Solutions Group personnel worldwide.
  • Information sourced from Moody’s Analytics, the International Monetary Fund Research Department, the United Nations and other leading organizations.

Projections are based on transaction data from CWT’s global client portfolio, including anonymized client travel patterns, over the past seven years. Key macroeconomic and per-country indicators, such as current and expected GDP growth, the consumer price index, unemployment rates and crude oil prices, were used in the statistical model, as well as key supply-side drivers sourced from OAG and STR Global.

To read the 2019 Global Travel Forecast, go HERE.


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