Premium Incentive Products - Inspiration for Motivation Newsletter Features

Feature Story

October 2019


Preliminary Findings Released for 2019 Incentive Travel Industry Index

Recent Inspiration for Motivation Feature Stories

Gartner: More U.S. Employees Intend to Stay Put - September 2019

IRF Study Shows High Rates of Incentive Program Changes to Comply With Regulations - August 2019

Research Looks at Gig, External Workers - July 2019

IRF Examines How Top-Performing Financial Services Handle Incentives & Rewards - June 2019

IRF Study Reveals Reward & Recognition Strategies of Top Tech Companies - May 2019

Big Box Retailers See Gift Card Growth - April 2019

Research Shows Loyalty Members Want More Redemption Opportunities - March 2019

IRF Announces 2019 Incentive Trends - February 2019

Randstad US Identifies Work Trends to Watch - January 2019

More Companies Gifting This Season - December 2018

Market Leaders Address Challenges to Corporate Gifts, Rewards & Recognition - November 2018

IRF Projects Increase in Data-Driven Decisions & Delivery of Personalized Rewards - October 2018

Hinda Asks: How Does Reward Delivery Affect the Reward Experience? - September 2018

IRF Study Reveals Difficulties for Program Owners - August 2018

IRF Listens to Voice of the Market - July 2018

IRF Study Looks at Corporate Program Owners of Incentive Programs - June 2018

Making the Most of Global Employee Recognition - May 2018

Report Shows Gen Z, Millennials Changing Loyalty - April 2018

Incentive Research Foundation Announces Top 10 Trends for 2018 - March 2018

Experiment Assesses People's Preference for Rewards - February 2018

Bill Keeps Tax Exclusion for Incentives - January 2018

IRF Examines Reward Presentation & Attraction - December 2017

Industry Pros Discuss Current, Future Challenges to Corporate Gift & Recognition Market - November 2017

Meetings & Events Forecast Shows Increased Confidence in 2018 - October 2017

The Incentive Research Foundation (IRF), Society for Incentive Travel Excellence (SITE), and Financial and Insurance Conference Professionals (FICP), along with research partner Oxford Economics, announced the release of the second joint study of the global incentive travel industry. "Incentive Travel Industry Index" powered by SITE Index, IRF Outlook and FICP is the largest-ever survey undertaken into the incentive travel industry, achieving an unprecedented number of submissions from five categories of incentive travel professionals.

Survey findings show further increases over 2018 in per-person investment, with hotel spend and not airline costs—the outlier in 2018—now capturing the majority of the spend. Destination infrastructure (i.e., hotels) is also the top consideration in destination selection, relegating destination appeal into third position, after safety.

Key insights include:

  • Incentive travel is about going to a new place, crossing a barrier together, experiencing a new culture.
  • North American buyers showed favorable interest in Oceania, Southeast Asia and Central America, with a net increase of approximately 9% to 12% more buyers expected to make increased use of those destinations over the next two years.
  • A stronger focus on soft power is boosting the role of incentive travel as a builder of corporate culture and engagement.
  • Senior management values program effects on participants and return on objectives, in addition to measures of ROI.
  • The importance of impacts to workplace relations and company culture stands out.
  • Cost factors are the most important drivers of increases in spending per person.
  • In competing for incentive travel business, suppliers recognize the importance of compelling experiences, delivered with seamless service quality.
  • Destination management companies (DMCs) anticipate buyers will increasingly contract directly with suppliers, bypassing DMCs as intermediaries.
  • Sector participants referenced the focus on company culture and sustainability as key positive factors impacting programs planned for 2020 and 2021.
  • Challenges around safety, security and marketplace uncertainty were the most important negative factors.
  • Experiencing the destination and building relationships through meals remain top-rated items for successful incentive travel programs.
  • Wellness, sustainability and flexible activities will gain prevalence.
  • Golf and other competitive sports will recede further.
  • Mandated events and team-building events will become slightly less common.
  • Western Europe and Central America are the top long-haul destinations used by North American buyers.