UK has second highest level of business travel spending in Europe

The UK has the second highest level of spending on business travel in Western Europe, according to new research.

Widely considered to be the voice of the business travel industry, the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) has studied activity across five of the five most important markets for corporate travel. It discovered evidence of growth beginning to return to pre-recession levels.

Cited by, the group’s latest GBTA Business Travel Index Outlook placed the UK second in Western Europe in terms of business travel spend. An estimated $40.6 billion (£25 billion) was spent in 2012, with some of this possibly used to whisk people off to corporate venues around their own country.

This is expected to grow by 1.6 per cent in 2013 to hit $41.3 billion (£26 billion), while overall business travel spending among Germany, Britain, France, Italy and Spain has been tipped to rise by 3.3 per cent this year.

If realised, this would be the largest gain in Western Europe since the recession hit in 2008.

Catherine McGavock, regional director for Europe for GBTA, said that after six consecutive quarters of decline, business travel across Western Europe is finally on the way up.

“Challenges remain but we cannot ignore the economic progress that has been made and the impact that this will have on both domestic and international travel across Western Europe,” she told

“Next year we can expect to see the largest annual growth in business travel spending in more than six years.”