Duty of care for business travel: how do employers assess and manage business travel risk?

Alexandros Paraskevas, Ioannis S. Pantelidis, John Ladlow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The purpose of this study is to explore the risk factors that employers consider when assessing an employee’s business travel (BT) assignment and the risk treatment, crisis response and recovery strategies they use to discharge their BT duty of care.

An exploratory approach is taken with in-depth interviews of 21 executives, travel managers and insurance brokers involved with the management of BT in four international hotel groups. In all, 12 follow-up interviews were conducted to assess the possible COVID-19 impact on BT risk management processes.

Employers assess BT assignments considering the travel’s characteristics, including the destination’s risk profile against seven types of risks (health, political, transport, natural, crime, technology and kidnap), length of stay, travel mode and activities undertaken in the destination as well as the traveler’s profile which includes diversity and travel experience. Accordingly, they develop a range of duty of care strategies for BT risk treatment, crisis response and recovery.

Practical implications
BT practitioners can use the proposed framework to develop risk assessment methodologies based on more accurate destination and traveler profiles and pursue targeted risk treatment strategies and insurance policies. The proposed duty of care approach can be used as a blueprint for organizations to design and manage BT policies.

BT risk is an under-researched area. The extant research looks predominantly at travel risks and their assessment taking the traveler’s perspective. This study looks at business travel risk and explores it from an employer’s risk management perspective offering a BT risk assessment framework and a BT duty of care plan.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4438-4457
Number of pages20
JournalInternational Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management
Issue number12
Early online date14 Jun 2022
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 1 Nov 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022, Emerald Publishing Limited.


  • Business travel
  • COVID-19
  • Duty of care
  • Risk assessment
  • Travel management
  • Travel risk
  • Business traveler


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