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Negative impact of business travel revealed

18 October 2022

WELLBEING IS a major issue for business travellers, with eight in 10 (81%) saying they have felt negative emotions while on work trips, including stress (22%), anxiety (18%), exhaustion (18%) and loneliness (17%), according to a new Opinium* survey of 500 UK business travellers commissioned by World Travel Protection, a leading global travel assistance organisation.

Over three-quarters (77%) have also seen their work affected on a business trip by issues such as stress and anxiety (21%), jetlag and general tiredness (19%) and language barriers (19%).

Furthermore, 60% have been impacted or know a colleague who has suffered from some form of harassment or exclusion when travelling on business. This includes unwanted attention due to their sexuality (15%) and racial abuse or being side-lined or not taken seriously in a meeting due to their ethnicity (13%). More than one in ten (12%) have felt the need to hide their or a colleague’s sexuality.

Nearly three-quarters (73%) say employee wellbeing is a priority for their organisation yet only just over half (55%) say that they don’t feel their wellbeing is taken seriously, with under 34s (58%) most likely to feel this, compared to over 45s (34%). 

Luke Banks, regional chief medical officer UK / Europe, World Travel Protection says, “Looking after your staff’s wellbeing is crucial, especially when they’re working overseas. Not only is it the right thing to do, but it is actually an investment, as an individual’s poor wellbeing will have a significant effect on their productivity and effectiveness at work.”

*Opinium online survey conducted with 500 UK business travellers, who travel internationally for business at least once a year, between 12 – 19 May 2022.