UK business travellers are increasingly concerned about sustainability when it comes to transport options, according to the latest research by Trainline Partner Solutions – the business travel arm of Trainline.

The research was carried out by Censuswide in April 2023, with respondents comprising 1,002 UK business travellers who plan to travel for work in the next 12 months.

More than half of respondents (53 per cent) said that, if looking for a new job, they would prioritise a firm that supported low carbon travel over a competitor that did not.

Indeed, almost half (44 per cent) think their employer will struggle to attract and retain talent if they don’t offer such sustainable travel options.

Nonetheless, 51 per cent said that their company either doesn’t have a policy to support lower carbon modes of travel, or that “support is limited to non-existent”.

The majority of business travellers (91 per cent) deem sustainability a priority when booking business travel, with 72 per cent stating that their interest in lower carbon ways to travel has grown since the pandemic.

Obstacles stopping those surveyed from requesting more sustainable transport modes include the negative reaction from management due to cost (26 per cent) or a longer journey duration (24 per cent).

Indeed, 62 per cent have taken short-haul flights or car journeys for work when they would have preferred lower carbon alternatives such as rail.

Additionally, 45 per cent are supportive of companies allowing extra time to travel using greener methods, while 70 per cent of respondents are willing to travel by train even if it takes significantly longer than by plane.

Liz Emmott, director of Global Distribution at Trainline Partner Solutions, said:

“Our data demonstrates the desire for lower carbon travel is a cross-generational trend and business travellers of all ages identify sustainability as a priority – this is not just confined to Gen Z.

“Unfortunately, the data also shows many UK businesses still lag behind the curve in promoting and providing the low-carbon travel that their employees crave. As we enter a new era for ESG reporting, the time for action is now: through technology we can support businesses to implement simple and seamless greener travel programmes.”