It's time to start traveling in style again.
Maybe you already are. Maybe you never stopped.
A study released last week by Travel Leaders Group, one of the largest travel companies in North America, found that more business travelers are staying in luxury and upper upscale hotel properties and are booking more first-class flights compared to last year.
Luxury and upper upscale are at the top of the food chain in the hotel market scale group in terms of amenities and rates.
The data come from a survey of 306 national travel agency owners, managers and frontline travel agents who indicated that 50 percent or more of their portfolio is made up of business travelers.
About 64 percent said their business travel clients book the nicer hotels and 56 percent said more than 10 percent of their clients are flying in the front of the plane. Both were up from last year.
Company policy was the main reason given when asked why business travelers fly in coach. Last year, cost was No. 1.
In a year-over-year comparison of business travel bookings, 54 percent said they are higher than 2012, which was down slightly from last year's survey. But fewer — about 16 percent of those surveyed — said they are lower than last year, according to the study.
More than 30 percent said bookings are about even compared with last year. That was up from about 25 percent last fall.
Good news for high-end hoteliers and airlines? I'd say there is some growth potential there.
What do you think? Is it time to throw up a few more hotels in the midstate?