What are business travellers?

Business travellers are a type of hotel guest that travel for commercial purposes. They could be on-the-road salespeople who constantly jump from hotel to hotel, or more ad hoc travellers in town for a meeting, a conference or a networking event.

Business travellers are a segment of the travel market that all small accommodation providers should seek to attract. They tend to be low maintenance, and offer far greater consistency – hotels for business travellers tend to experience less dramatic high and low seasons, and are far busier during the week.

This article will briefly discuss some business travel trends and tips on what small hoteliers need to do to attract more business travellers.

Attract more business travellers with Little Hotelier

From getting in front of corporate travellers, to simplifying the booking process, Little Hotelier can earn you more reservations from business travellers.

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Why should hotels target business travellers?

Hotels should target business travellers for a couple of compelling reasons.

Business travel trends are very different to leisure travel trends. Leisure travellers tend to only stay on weekends. They come and go depending on factors like what time of the year it is, and the state of the economy.

On the other hand, business travellers book mid-week stays, and travel all year round. This means that they can plug the reservation gaps left by leisure travellers, and can help you reduce the impacts of low season.

Business travellers also tend to be quite low maintenance. They aren’t looking for a life-changing holiday experience – just a comfortable place to rest their weary heads, and a workspace and strong WiFi connection so they can do their jobs.

In all likelihood, your marketing strategy would likely be aimed largely at leisure travellers, but you should also know that the business traveller market is a lucrative one to tap into.

Business travellers are often looking for comfortable, home-like accommodations that allow them to enjoy their work-related travel experience even more.

Business travel trends that define business travellers

The technology industry is constantly changing, and businesses both small and large are usually the first organisations to adopt new technology.

It serves as a reminder that their business travellers are typically going to be the savviest guests of the lot, so it’s important to invest in new technology to appeal to this powerful market segment.

Business travellers are using mobile apps to gain power over their own travel plans and arrangements. Rather than working with a company representative or a travel agency, business travellers are discovering mobile apps to be a simple way to find great deals on the travel services that they need.

Business travellers reported that they were most likely to use mobile technology to book flights as well as accommodation for their stay. 

Because they’re travelling for business, it’s only natural that work is their number one priority while travelling. This is probably why they are constantly connected to their mobile devices.

Below are key business travel industry facts for small property owners:

  • Business travellers work for more than 240 hours per year than the average American worker.
  • 39% of business travellers work more hours when they travel than they do at the office.
  • They spend more than 16 hours per day within the range of wifi, and 90% expect there to be wifi at hotels.
  • 59% said they would feel disoriented, distraught, and lonely without smartphones for just a week.
  • The average business traveller checks their smartphone 34x per day.

More and more business travellers are booking travel for themselves, with the majority (64%) beginning their journey with an online search.

At this time, they love watching videos – in fact, 69% watch online travel videos (that’s 20% more than leisure travellers).

business travellers

In terms of business traveller booking habits, research has found that:

  • Those travelling themselves have plenty of control in planning the elements of their stay. In fact, 50% have “full control” while 29% have “some control”.
  • The majority (57%) of business travellers plan their trip 1-3 weeks before travelling.

Business travellers tend to stay between 1 and 5 nights.

How to attract business travellers to your hotel

It’s easy to understand why your business guests are so valuable. While your leisure guests only visit you during peak holiday periods, your business guests travel all year round.

Here’s everything you need to know about how you can attract and cater to them in the best way possible.

1. Convenient service

The business traveller’s need for convenience starts with the booking process.

Allow business travellers to check their availability and book online. You should also touch base before their stay to offer extra services (eg. meeting room, transport). If you have an online booking engine and front desk system like 

Little Hotelier, this process can be automated.

Adding that personal touch in servicing each business travel booking should be one of the ways that small hotels can stand out from their competition (who are usually only across the street).

2. Internet connection (Free Wifi)

Complimentary high speed internet is an essential feature that your small property must offer to entice business travellers to choose you over the big hotel brands that charge extra for it.

Since business travellers need constant connectivity to answer emails or jump on Zoom, refusing to offer free wifi as an in-room amenity will get you removed from their shortlist.

3. Accessible location

Business travellers want to be close to their meeting location. You can’t change the location of your hotel, but you can be more descriptive about where you are located.

For example, name which exhibition centres and business districts are close by, and how easy they are to get to.

4. Functional spaces

If you have a spacious terrace or meeting room, why not encourage your guests to use them to hold meetings? It’s a great way to upsell other services, such as catering. This kind of setting is unique and more appealing than using an office.

5. Easy modes of transportation

Business travellers prefer to book with places that offer both value and convenience and may be forced to adhere to a corporate budget. Business travellers tend to have short stays, so they may not want to hire a car.

You may want to consider offering free shuttle services to and from the nearby airport, and you also could provide business travellers with the option of booking transportation to local conference centres, corporate headquarters and more.

In addition to offering an airport pick-up and drop-off service, you can upsell transport to and from their meetings.

If you’re centrally located, show goodwill by handing them a guide containing important information on how to get around and what restaurants and attractions your destination has to offer.

6. Local event partnerships

To reach business travellers, it would be wise to partner with retail and online travel agencies who are established in this market.

Why not create group activities in your region by partnering with a local corporate event company? That way you can offer team building activities and entertainment, offer discounts and earn a commission!

7. Upgraded room features

Business travellers need different types of in-room amenities to leisure travellers. For starters, they absolutely need you to have technology infrastructure in place that will allow them to operate remotely from their room.

Some obvious business-friendly features of the room itself include:

  • Desk and chair
  • Coffee pot
  • Hair dryer
  • Wake up call or service
  • Iron and ironing board
  • Full length mirrors

All the facilities of the room need to be presentable, functional, and modern.

If you would like more tips on how to sell more rooms online to specific traveller segments, download our ebook.

8. Improved hotel amenities

Beyond promoting your in-room amenities, you need to emphasise your facilities in online marketing campaigns that are aimed at business travellers. Business travellers are often concerned about health and wellness, and they appreciate having access to exercise equipment or outdoor recreational spaces. Conference rooms or workspaces also are desirable among those who are travelling for business purposes.

Business travellers are often focused on the task at-hand, and they may not have time to indulge in the same laid-back lifestyle as leisure guests. You can up-sell relevant services to business travellers, like a daily cleaning and housekeeping service. If your property is an apartment rental, offer a personal chef or shopper.

Take advantage of this opportunity to upsell to business travellers and increase your revenue.

9. Business traveller rewards program

If there’s one thing that business travellers love, it’s a good rewards program. They often feel like it’s a way of benefiting personally from a professional obligation. Rewards programs that appeal to business travellers include those that offer free upgrades, promotional discounts and luxurious touches throughout their stay.

10. Seamless mobile check-in

Mobile booking technology will continue to influence the hospitality industry, from the large hotel chains to the small, independent hoteliers.

Business travellers, in particular, prefer the convenience of mobile, but an ever-increasing number of leisure travellers are relying on their devices to take care of their travel needs.

Consider the services that business travellers want with a mobile app:

  • Mobile check-in is a critical element for business travellers.
  • Allow your guests to order food, drinks or even book local excursions directly from your app.
  • Give them the power to complete mobile payments if they so choose, rather than forcing them to check out in person at the front desk prior to departing.

All of these features can be found on the Little Hotelier app, which allows a guest to book and pay for their room (including any extras you might want to offer), and check in as soon as they arrive.

Best hotels for business travellers

The best hotels for business travel tend to be those that have been built in a business-friendly way from the ground up. But that’s not to say that a small, independent hotelier can’t cater to corporate guests. By taking notes from the best business travel hotels, you can begin to craft a more corporate-friendly offering.


Having traditionally catered to business and upscale customers, Hyatt has long been one of the top hotels for business travellers. They put a focus on technology, with most of their properties featuring some form of business centre that has everything a worker could need to do their job.


One of the main drivers for Hilton’s success in the business traveller market is the Hilton Honors program, which allows businesses travellers to accrue points, and gives corporate guests more control over their stay, through features like automatic room upgrades, Digital Key Share, the ability to book connecting rooms


Marriott is another chain that has used a loyalty program – Marriott Bonvoy® – to find success in the business travel sector. Its full-service hotels are also known to be particularly welcoming to corporate travellers, with all the amenities a worker or team could need found right on site, from workstations to conference rooms.

By Dean Elphick

Dean is the Senior Content Marketing Specialist of Little Hotelier, the all-in-one software solution purpose-built to make the lives of small accommodation providers easier. Dean has made writing and creating content his passion for the entirety of his professional life, which includes more than six years at Little Hotelier. Through content, Dean aims to provide education, inspiration, assistance, and, ultimately, value for small accommodation businesses looking to improve the way they run their operations (and live their life).