Contrary to expectations, nearly half of Canadian organizations responding to a survey by the Association of Corporate Travel Executives and the Conference Board of Canada say their travel spending actually increased in 2010. And 89 percent say they are anticipating the same or greater volumes in the coming year. Fifty-six organizations took part in the poll.

“While survey results from the same time last year were pessimistic, there is now an upbeat attitude in the industry as fears of a further reduction in business travel volumes in 2010 did not materialize,” says Monica Hailstone, ACTE’s regional director for Canada. “We are feeling this renewed confidence across the industry … This is not only good news for the Canadian economy but the global economy as well.”

According to the survey, business travel volumes in 2011 are expected to rise by close to 5 percent with travel expenses tracking closely behind.  

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A higher volume of domestic trips was the most common reason cited by survey respondents for higher travel expenses, followed by rising airfares. While hotel and car rental rates are expected to see some gain, travel managers project increases to remain below 2 percent.

Now in its fourth year, the Canadian Business Travel Outlook survey tracks business travel trends to provide a benchmarking tool for travel management professionals and the travel suppliers that serve them.