True costs of booking travel at the last minute

Published on : Monday, March 14, 2016

concurLast-minute business travel is costly, but what a difference one day can make in managing those costs.


Concur, the world’s leading provider of integrated travel and expense management solutions, released an analysis of the true costs of last-minute business travel. On average, booking air travel seven or fewer days before a trip will cost on average 44% more than, if it had been booked 15 days or more in advance. However, business travelers can cut this figure in half if they book just eight days in advance or more, resulting in fares that are just 22% more than booking 15 days in advance.



“It’s common knowledge that last-minute air travel will cost significantly more, but booking those last minute tickets eight days in advance is the sweet spot for keeping those last-minute costs as manageable as possible,” said Tim MacDonald, senior vice president of Travel, Concur. “With more data, businesses can make smarter decisions about business travel policies, budgets and back-end processes that ultimately save resources”.



Concur’s analysis also found January and August average the highest premiums for last-minute travel in comparison to the overall cost of the flight. The best month for last-minute travel is June, when premiums are about 8 percentage points lower than the average of premiums throughout the year. However, low premiums on last-minute travel come with a price: ticket prices in June cost 9 percent more than average airfare throughout the year.



Concur analyzed its own data to arrive at the findings. In 2015, the travel and expense management company processed transactions worth more than $70 billion, including costs associated with approximately 22 million U.S. domestic round trip airline bookings from 2011 to 2015 considered in this analysis.



Rising Business Travel Costs


According to Juniper Research, travel is the second largest controllable business expense behind salaries. Last-minute travel is often inevitable in today’s modern business landscape; however, as Concur’s data shows, the impact can be costly.


Meanwhile, Concur data indicates a new trend is causing travel costs to jump significantly – and rising airfare prices aren’t the leading culprit.




How Businesses Can Save – Even When Last-Minute Travel Arises


Armed with travel spend data and insights, Concur has tips to help businesses keep costs down and improve efficiencies.



Source: Concur

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