HK business trips costliest in Asia

Top News | Lucas Lo 18 Apr 2019

Hong Kong remains the most expensive location in Asia for business trips, with traveling expenses averaging HK$4,040 a day - a year-on-year increase of more than 1 percent, a survey from information provider ECA International shows.

The study focused on 400 locations in 195 countries, and itemized costs for expenses, including hotel rooms, meals, and taxi fares.

Lee Quane, regional director in Asia, said Hong Kong has always been one of the most expensive locations for business trips in the region with high costs for goods and services and expensive hotel rates.

He said high costs may cause companies to reduce the time spent on business trips to Hong Kong or may even force them to use video conferencing.

Mainland cities also placed higher in the survey, with Shanghai jumping to 89th place from 117th.

Quane expects costs of business travel to Tokyo, which ranked second in Asia, to increase further this year as it hosts events that include the Rugby World Cup, and again next year with the Olympics. A shortage of suitable accommodation could push hotel rates even higher.

Ranked third in Asia is Seoul, where the prices of food and drinks are even higher there than in Tokyo, Quane said.

Business trips to Singapore now average US$468 (HK$3,650) a day, making it the fourth most expensive location in Asia.

But hotel room prices have dropped slightly, even though demand has stayed at about the same level since the Lion City has remained a popular place for international business.

Johor Bahru in Malaysia is the cheapest location in the ranking, where a business trip and hotel costs would account for US$184 and US$83 a day respectively.

New York is the most expensive location in the world for business trips, with a daily cost of US$799 - some US$80 more than Geneva in Switzerland, the second-placed city.

lucas.lo@singtaonewscorp.com

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