According to a survey from the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA), half of corporate travel policies allow for the use of ride-sharing services such as Uber or Lyft. That’s up from 44% just six months ago and less than 10% 4 years ago.
More corporations are also allowing the use of Airbnb and other home-sharing services. with 30% of the corporations surveyed officially allow home-sharing service for their traveling employees.
The GBTA refers to this as the "the consumerization of business travel" and they are forecasting the use of sharing economy services by business travelers will continue to grow at a rapid pace.
This data is hardly surprising.
As the chart below from Bloomberg's Uber Takes Majority of Ground Transport Market for U.S. Business Travelers shows, Uber and ride sharing services are rapidly gaining share on more traditional transportation options.
And as the excellent travel industry news site Skift points out, Airbnb's business travel transactions have doubled since 2014.
There continues to be a lot of debate about whether or not on-demand economy companies like Uber, Lyft and Airbnb will continue to be successful. Much of this debate focuses on whether or not their business models and use of contract labor will allow them to be profitable over the long run.
We think these firms have proven there is strong demand for their services - from both consumers and businesses.
We have little doubt they can tweak their business models to turn this demand in profitable long term businesses.