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Businesses with teams across the globe could bolster their balance, ditch the travel expenses and use video conferences instead according to new research. Video conferencing offers a cheaper alternative to meetings but businesses are still wasting thousands every year flying people around the world. Perhaps they do not realise that technology has moved on to such an extent that it really does offer a viable, reliable and high-quality alternative. Cloud-based online meeting platform, LyteSpark has carried out research showing that we do not need to bust ourselves with all of this business travel. The company analysed the average cost involved to travel from the UK to 20 business hubs around the world. It noted costs for return business-class trips, taxi costs to and from Central London and Heathrow, airport transfers to and from the hotel, taxi costs to and from the meeting, an overnight stay in a 4 star hotel and the cost for a three-course dinner. The monthly cost was calculated on the basis of one trip with the annual cost calculated on 12 trips a year. It then compared these costs with the monthly cost of using its own online meeting platform. The research showed that businesses could make a significant saving of over $5,584 on every trip from the UK to San Francisco, Silicon Valley’s capital – the costliest trip to make globally. In other words, a trip to San Francisco is 116 times more than using video conferencing. Los Angeles is the second costliest business district to visit at $5,351 per person per trip. In South East Asia, Singapore is the costliest city to visit drawing up a total bill of $3,729, while Tokyo comes in a close second at $3,366. The research revealed that British businesses with teams and clients across the globe could save, on average, $33,200 per year on business trips abroad if they use online meeting platforms. These savings should be a wake-up call for any sized business. It may seem obvious that every penny counts to the business and its bottom line. Meetings in person are sometimes be vital, however they are not necessary on such a regular basis. Alex Hunte, co-founder, LyteSpark said: “State-of-the-art online meeting platforms are no longer clumsy and complex. They are now designed to be intuitive, ensuring they are merely an extension of day-to-day communications. Nobody has to wait days or weeks to discuss pressing matters which can now be resolved or actioned within minutes.