Although companies are worried about the impact of the H1N1 flu, most aren't canceling meetings or events because of it, according to a new survey from the Association of Corporate Travel Executives (ACTE).
ACTE surveyed corporate travel managers at 105 international companies early this month and found that 63 percent have serious concerns about the spread of swine flu (37 percent don't), but that only 9 percent are holding off on meetings and conferences because of it (91 percent aren't).
"Though a majority of corporations have indicated they have 'serious concerns' about the potential threat of the H1N1 influenza, these concerns are not yet carrying over into the travel planning process for the remainder of 2009 and 2010, nor have they warranted any special consideration outside of their overall disaster contingency planning," ACTE Executive Director Susan Gurley said in a statement. "On one hand, it is commendable that companies are not giving in to panic. Yet on the other hand, this is a situation that can develop very quickly and it is very important that the appropriate arrangements be put in place."
According to the ACTE survey, only 34 percent of companies have a plan or instructions for travelers who may get caught up in airport screenings with flu-like symptoms. Most companies, however, are urging employees and travelers to stay home if they're feeling ill—regardless of their symptoms.
Said the association, "Bottles of hand sanitizer are as common at meetings as the little bowl of mints."