Incentive Travel Research Findings

Mike May, 2018 Chairman of the IRF, and Michael Butler of SITE present their top 5 to-dos for incentive travel. Once you’re caught up on these incentive travel research findings, take a look at our incentive travel page to see how Brightspot can bring bright ideas to your next program.

Here are the top five to-do’s for incentive travel.

Fact #1 from the Incentive Research Foundation and SITE Index, optimism is high despite world events. We’re seeing a decline in concern about terrorism, but overall people are optimistic. To-do number one: be optimistic. We see optimism in business is self-fulfilling so why not be optimistic?

Fact #2 from the Incentive Research Foundation is that incentive travel budgets are growing four to five percent a year. The average in 2017 was $3,900, but remember that’s a mix of six-night European programs and two-night trips to Las Vegas. To-do number two, match your investment to whatever your target audience is whether it’s big or small.

Fact #3 costs are growing faster than the budget. That’s reported by 60% of all planners and because of that, planners and buyers are looking to reduce costs American Express reports that hotel rates have gone up 5% a year for three years so you see the budget strength. To-do number three is a humorous one, tell “Tight Pockets” the CFO that you need more budget.

Fact #4 is probably obvious: investments in technology are becoming increasingly important. We see a tipping point for event apps where they’ve gone from nice-to-have to must-have. To-do number four, add an event app!

Fact #5 is what we call matchmaking. Disconnect in the market occupancy is up; room rates are up, travel of all kinds is up, but new constructions are not keeping up in space. This leads to an increase in lead times, but yet corporate decision cycles aren’t matching that. Our fifth to-do: start earlier.

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