For Business Travelers: Comfort On The Road Is Paramount

Frequent business travelers are looking to make their travel as comfortable and “normal” as possible, the Workstyles Study conducted by Hilton‘s Homewood Suites found. Work-life balance is a becoming a popular catchphrase amongst frequent business travelers who want room to spread out, the ability to maintain a normal routine and opportunities to interact with business associates and fellow travelers.

The most frequent complaint amongst respondents (32%) is that they missed their “normal routine,” a statistic up 12% from the 2012 study. Business travelers specifically missed their kitchens (25%), up 18% from 2010.

Business Travel Isn’t Going Anywhere

Being on the road can wear on travelers, with 34% also responding that the biggest obstacle of business travel is simply “being away from home.” In an effort to feel more at ease in their surroundings, two-thirds of travelers take the time to unpack their suitcase.

This “wear and tear” on travelers doesn’t mean that business travel will cease, however. Nearly three-quarters of respondents agree that traveling for work is the most effective way to do business, and one-third have made what they would call an “important business connection” while socializing at a hotel.“Corporate travelers are emphasizing both how to maximize value for their travel expenditures and their productivity while traveling,” said Bjorn Hanson, Dean, New York University Tisch Center for Hospitality, Tourism and Sports Management in a release. “Business travelers are indicating increased willingness to try new brands this year, so extended-stay hotels, for example, will help extend their travel budgets and meet their business needs.”

Most Important Amenities

Most travelers work an hour or more a day in their hotel rooms, choosing the desk or the living room for their workspace. Internet (88%) is the most used amenity, but a number of factors play a role in the booking decision.

Travelers prefer healthier food options versus enhanced fitness facilities (69%) but also place a heavy emphasis on value and location (34% each) as well as a “large, comfortable room” (63%).

“In 2012 the hotel industry has seen a rebound in business travel, but returning guests are now demanding more than just a fiscal value,” said a Hilton representative in a release. “Less impressed by bells and whistles, they want amenities and services that deliver both comfort and productivity.”

The study profiled nearly 600 business travelers.