The 2015 Corporate Travel Index, Business Travel News' 31st annual effort to assemble business
travel per diems for 200 cities around the world, features some new methods for
compiling the lists of most expensive U.S. and non-U.S. cities for daily
business travel costs.
[Please click here to view the digital edition of the 2015 Corporate Travel Index, featuring all per diem listings, downloadable as a pdf.]
For this edition of the Index BTN worked for the first time with New York University's School of
Professional Studies to determine dining costs for 200 cities worldwide. Under
the tutelage of professor Donna Quadri and project mentor Lynn Minnaert, nine
NYU students in an Advanced Research Seminar in October and November 2014
called hundreds of restaurants throughout the world to determine menu pricing
and other miscellaneous costs.
As a result of the change in data-collection methods for
dining and miscellaneous cost data, BTN
in this edition of the Corporate Travel Index provides year-over-year
percentage changes in cost only for the hotel and car rental costs data
provided by Advito. Those interested in dining and miscellaneous costs in prior
years can find the 2014 Corporate Travel Index here.
The 2015 edition of the Business
Travel News Corporate Travel Index is based on actual prices paid in 2014
by corporate clients of BCD Travel, provided to BTN by BCD's Advito consulting arm, as well as research conducted
by The BTN Group and the New York University School of Professional Studies.
U.S. Corporate Travel Index
Total U.S. per diems are compiled by adding the average
hotel, car and food costs listed on subsequent pages.
Hotel: The U.S.
hotel cost charts display average upper upscale, upscale and midscale hotel
rates paid by BCD Travel corporate clients from January to November 2014, in
addition to an overall average daily rate. That overall rate is calculated by
averaging rates from the three listed tiers as well as luxury and economy
tiers. Average hotel costs include 2014 sales and occupancy taxes and
surcharges based on information collected from each city's convention and
visitors' bureau, chamber of commerce or other public data. Advito did not
update the 2013 data published in last year's Corporate Travel Index.
The "ADR change" column reflects only the
year-over-year change between the 2014 ADR data and the 2013 data. The "total
change" column incorporates 2014 and 2013 sales and occupancy taxes and
surcharges, verified separately by BTN
for each year.
Car rental: The
car rental costs listed are averages for each city based on actual rates paid
by BCD Travel corporate clients from January to November 2014 for compact,
intermediate and full-size rentals and include taxes and surcharges, also
calculated by Advito. Advito did not update the 2013 data published in last
year's Corporate Travel Index. The "rate change" column reflects only
the year-over-year change between the 2014 average rate data and the 2013 data.
The "overall change" column incorporates tax and surcharge data for
the past two years, as provided by Advito.
Food: For the
dining costs, the NYU team in October and November 2014 called hundreds of U.S.
restaurants to determine pricing. The researchers surveyed 12 restaurants in
each city with annual gross domestic products of more than $95 billion and six
restaurants each in other U.S. cities.
In large and small U.S. cities alike, researchers contacted
chain restaurants and independent establishments for lunch and dinner pricing,
while incorporating hotel restaurant pricing for breakfast.
Researchers for breakfast pricing in large cities surveyed
three chain, six independent and three hotel restaurants; in smaller cities,
they contacted three chain, two independent and one hotel restaurant. For lunch
and dinner pricing, researchers for large cities surveyed six chain and six
independent restaurants, while for small-city data they surveyed three chain
and three independent restaurants.
Chain restaurants used include Denny's, International House
of Pancakes and Starbucks for breakfast; Chili's, Applebee's, Panera Bread,
Olive Garden and local chains for lunch; and LongHorn Steakhouse, Olive Garden
and local chains for dinner.
Researchers used TripAdvisor to locate popular independent
restaurants and hotel restaurants for surveying.
Researchers sought and tabulated pricing for a breakfast of
two eggs, meat, toast, orange juice and coffee; a lunch of soup, a hamburger or
chicken sandwich, a slice of pie and a soft drink; and a dinner of soup, filet
steak, a glass of red wine, dessert and a cup of coffee. Starbucks does not
offer all those precise menu items; researchers instead sought pricing for a
breakfast sandwich including egg and meat, a tall filter coffee and an orange
The listed costs do not include tax but do include a 15
Americas, EMEA & Asia/Pacific Corporate Travel
As with U.S. Corporate Travel Index data, per diems for the
100 listed cities outside the United States are based on prices paid in 2014 by
corporate clients of BCD Travel, provided to BTN by BCD's Advito consulting arm, as well as research conducted
by the NYU School of Professional Studies. The roster of cities included in the
Corporate Travel Index did not change from last year's edition. Exchange rates
from Dec. 2, 2014, were used for all data.
provided to BTN average upscale daily
hotel rates paid by BCD Travel corporate clients from January to November 2014.
Rates do not include taxes. Advito did not update the 2013 data published in
last year's Corporate Travel Index. The "change" column reflects the
year-over-year change only in the upscale daily hotel rates. Those changes were
not calculated using constant U.S. dollars; instead, local prices were
converted to U.S. dollars using exchange rates from Dec. 2, 2014, and measured
against last year's Corporate Travel Index hotel rates, which used exchange
rates from Oct. 4, 2013.
NYU researchers for each city determined the costs of two taxi fares (one from
the main airport to the city center, one from the main train or bus station to
the city center); a newspaper (The New
York Times or The Economist where
available, another major international publication otherwise); and a bottle of
water (33 centiliter Evian water or its equivalent) at the airport.
researchers conducted similar research into restaurants outside the United
States as they did for U.S. locations, with some differences. Non-U.S. cities
were classified as large or small based on population, with 1.5 million
inhabitants as the dividing line.
In large cities, 12 hotel, six chain and six independent
restaurants were surveyed for breakfast and lunch pricing, while 12 independent
restaurants were surveyed for dinner pricing. In small cities, six hotel, three
chain and three independent restaurants were surveyed for breakfast and lunch
pricing, while six independent restaurants were surveyed for dinner pricing.
Researchers sought and tabulated pricing for a continental
hotel breakfast; a lunch of a sandwich, salad and a non-alcoholic drink; and a
dinner of a fish, chicken or beef entree, a salad and a non-alcoholic drink.
Non-U.S. food prices include neither gratuity nor tax.
BTN thanks BCD
Travel, Advito and the New York University School of Professional Studies for
their assistance in developing this project.This
report originally appeared in the March 16, 2015, issue of Business Travel News.