More business travelers booking upscale rooms and airline seats
With the lingering effects of the Great Recession slowly disappearing, more business travelers are reserving high-priced hotel rooms and booking roomier seats in the front of the plane.
But the luxury spending may be benefiting executives, not middle managers and lower-level workers.
At the depth of the recession, most major companies restricted workers to flying in the economy section and booking budget hotel rooms. But some businesses now seem to be loosening the purse strings on the travel budget.
A study released last week by a major travel company found a 3.5% increase over last year in the number of business travelers reserving upscale hotel rooms. The study also found a 4.6% increase in the number of agents who said at least 11% of their clients are booking first- or business-class seats.
?We?re seeing a notable increase overall in the number of business travelers flying first and business class,? said Steve Loucks, a spokesman for Travel Leaders Group, the company that conducted the survey of 946 travel agents. ?This is a positive indicator that businesses are feeling better about the economy.?
But some local travel managers say the luxury spending does not extend to regular business travelers.
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