Are Business Travelers Sharing Hotel Rooms?

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A survey released by Embassy Suites shows 71 percent of business travelers have changed their habits, finding ways to cut back on expenses on the road over the past year. And intriguingly one way they've found to do that is by sharing hotel rooms with colleagues.

The Los Angeles Times reports that in the hotel company's second annual survey is a stat that shows that 17 percent of business travelers say they try to room with a co-worker..

Perhaps less surprisingly, 24 percent say they are booking rooms with hotel companies they feel offer good value.

Compared to 2009, the number of working Americans who say they were traveling less for business this year because of the economy, decreased from 51% to 43%. Those on the road are cutting expenses, however, by flying coach and cutting back on meals in addition to sharing rooms.

The survey shows hotel location and price are the most important factors to a majority (56%) of business travelers. Proximity to business meetings is the top consideration (29%) with price of accommodations coming in as a close second (27%). Free breakfast is the most important factor for more than twice as many business travelers as complimentary shuttle service to and from the airport (7% vs. 3%).

"We're seeing business travelers care more about necessities, like location and value, this year," said John Lee, vice president of Brand Marketing & Communications, Embassy Suites Hotels.

The survey reveals differences in business travel preferences between males and females. Interestingly, male business travelers put greater importance on traveling luxuriously than female travelers, showing a stronger preference for flying first class (29% vs. 16%) and staying in five-star hotels (33% vs. 26%).

Young business travelers (ages 21 to 34) are shown to have different behaviors than their more senior counterparts. For one, young business travelers are nearly twice as likely to visit Facebook before making business travel decisions (48% vs. 26%). And young professionals are much more likely to bring a variety of tech items on business trips, including MP3 players (54% vs. 33% of all business travelers), smart-phones (50% vs. 32%), portable DVD players (19% vs. 10%) and portable gaming devices (14% vs. 6%), the survey shows.

Photo, DiscoverDuPage, flickr
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