OAG: Business Travel Up in 2024, Loyalty Shifting

OAG: Business Travel Up in 2024, Loyalty Shifting

All generations except Baby Boomers plan to travel more for business this year than they did in 2023, according to survey respondents in OAG’s latest report on North American traveler sentiment, released Tuesday.

Gen X reported the largest increase, with 35 percent planning to fly for business this year compared with 25 percent a year prior. Millennials were up to 36 percent planning to do so versus 30 percent in 2023, while Gen Z travelers barely increased, going to 27 percent from 26 percent. The number of Baby Boomers who expect to travel for business declined to 18 percent from 19 percent.

OAG in April 2024 surveyed 2,000 North American travelers who have flown in the past year and were users of OAG’s flight tracking app, Flightview by OAG.

Meanwhile, about 89 percent of Baby Boomers are enrolled in at least one airline loyalty program, followed by 80 percent of Gen X travelers. But a fall-off begins with Millennials, at 70 percent, then Gen Z travelers at 65 percent.

The top barriers for the latter two generations in loyalty membership are a lack of consistency with a single brand or carrier, at 61 percent and 49 percent, respectively, followed by taking too long to redeem rewards, at 19 percent for Millennials and 14 percent for Gen Z.

The main reported incentives for all generations to sign up for an airline-branded credit card include free checked bags (63 percent), sign-up bonus (56 percent) and access to airport lounges (43 percent).

Overall, 32 percent of respondents are willing to pay up to $50 more to fly on one of the three largest legacy carriers—American Airlines, Delta Air Lines or United Airlines—as opposed to a low- or ultra-low-cost carrier, while 21 percent will pay up to $100 more.

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