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China slow-down affects UK business travel habits

American Express GBT says UK business travel to China fell 17 per cent in 2015
29/02/2016

Pictured: American Express Global Business Travel (GBT) says business travel bookings to China dropped significantly in 2015

China's economic instability has been blamed for a 17 per cent decline in business travel from the UK, says American Express Global Business Travel (GBT).


In its annual snapshot of top destinations for UK business travellers, which is compiled from bookings made throughout 2015, the company says bookings to China could be negatively impacted by its economic woes.


"Shanghai has seemingly lost its lustre since 2014 and has dropped out of the top 10 most-booked international destinations outside Europe. In fact, bookings by UK-based travellers to China saw a 17 per cent decrease year-on-year in 2015, potentially reflecting international concerns about the country’s economic situation," report authors say.


UK business travellers were most likely to go to Amsterdam or Dublin for European trips in 2015, while within the UK, London remained the most popular domestic destination, followed by Glasgow, Edinburgh and then Belfast.


Internationally the most popular destination for American Express GBT bookings was New York, followed by San Francisco, Dubai and then Johannesburg.


The data was compiled from all air and rail bookings made with GBT by UK-based travellers in 2015.


American Express GBT vice president Jason Geall said: “This data reveals that, whilst there is consistency with 2014 and the USA clearly remains one of the most important destinations for UK business travellers, there have been some shifts in travel patterns from the UK at both a European and wider international level in 2015.


“As our UK customers travel to destinations across the world to pursue business opportunities, we are supporting them with our global access and local expertise, as well as innovative tools to fulfil their duty of care obligations.”


Top 10 international destinations;



  1. New York

  2. San Francisco



  1. Dubai

  2. Johannesburg

  3. Singapore

  4. Boston



  1. Chicago



  1. Tel Aviv

  2. Hong Kong

  3. Delhi


Top 10 European destinations;



  1. Amsterdam

  2. Dublin



  1. Frankfurt

  2. Zurich

  3. Paris

  4. Munich



  1. Madrid



  1. Copenhagen

  2. Milan



  1. Stockholm


Top 10 UK destinations;



  1. London



  1. Glasgow

  2. Edinburgh

  3. Belfast



  1. Manchester



  1. Aberdeen

  2. Birmingham

  3. Newcastle

  4. Southampton

  5. Leeds


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