Business Travel Is Taking a Hit From the Government Shutdown

The partial government shutdown started just before Christmas, a slow time for work-related trips. But now that 2019 is well underway, business travelers are feeling an impact that will only grow if the impasse persists.

More than two weeks in, the government shutdown is already hurting business travel, and insiders expect the impact to grow more severe if the impasse continues.

According to a poll conducted by the Global Business Travel Association, a third of respondents said they have already seen repercussions from the partial shutdown, which started Dec. 22. President Donald Trump and Congress have been unable to reach a deal to reopen the government because he is insisting on $5.7 billion in funding for a controversial border wall.

On Monday and Tuesday, the business travel advocacy group conducted an online survey of 409 members, including buyers and suppliers.

Two-thirds of respondents said they expect a negative impact if the shutdown stretches past the end of the week.

The U.S. Travel Association said last week that according to preliminary estimates, the shutdown is resulting in lost economic output of more than $100 million a day just for travel.

Baked into that number is $50 million in direct domestic travel spending. The estimate also counts more than $50 million in indirect or induced output related to national park closures, a halt of some government travel, and the loss of additional government-related business travel.

By: Hanna Sampson

Source: Skift