Employers haggle for worker travel feesNews added by Benefits Pro on July 25, 2012
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By Jenny Ivy

Although more employers are refusing to pay for additional fees for employees on business trips, they're working with airlines on deals so workers don't have to foot the bill.

According to the 12th annual GetThere Corporate Travel Benchmark Survey, 78 percent are reimbursing for a first checked bag, compared to 95 percent in 2010. Reimbursement for on-board food and beverage dropped by 11 points to 42 percent, while Wi-Fi dropped by only one point to 50 percent.

“Companies told us they are reimbursing for fewer airline fees. However, employees are not necessarily being stuck with the bill,” said Suzanne Neufang, general manager of GetThere. “Many corporations are likely negotiating away some of the ancillary fees charged by airlines and establishing firm travel policies around what they will and will not pay for.”

Comparing 2011 travel fares with current prices, GetThere found that corporations are paying significantly more for air and hotel segments while car rental prices are slightly decreased.
  • Average Air Ticket Prices (roundtrip) are up 5 percent compared to 2011
  • Average Hotel Rates (per night) are up 4 percent compared to 2011
  • Average Car Rental Rates (per day) are down 1 percent compared to last year
More than a third of respondents said they will spend more on travel in 2012. Furthermore, 75 percent said their travel budgets will increase this year. The number one reason companies plan to spend more is because of company growth and expansions (24 percent), followed by more trips (22 percent) and more international trips (18 percent). Respondents reported the largest planned increases in travel for APAC and Latin America.

Originally published on BenefitsPro.com
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