British execs come third-equal in the European stakes of business travel. What's more, they use Wi-Fi to stay connected. Those are two of the unsurprising findings of a recent survey sponsored by HP.

Out of over 500 business folk surveyed from the UK, France, Germany, Netherlands and Belgium, 71 per cent had taken a business trip in the last year. The Dutch are the biggest travellers, with 66 per cent taking business trips on a regular basis. Forty-one per cent of Belgians travel for business while Germany and the UK are equal third on 33 per cent and the French trail the pack at 31 per cent.

The survey also asked how people stayed productive while out the office. Over half said their productivity would increase to some extent if they had have more time during business trips for some tourism and relaxation. A third said it would significantly increase their productivity, with the highest percentage (47 per cent) coming from France.

Most don't have the time, however. Instead, they spend what free time they do have working is their hotel rooms (67 per cent), using the hotel's Internet connection. Restaurants (eight per cent) and cafes (six per cent) followed, with airport lounges cited as one of the least favourite places to work (four per cent).

Most (86 per cent) agreed that the establishment of comprehensive Wi-Fi systems across major European cities would be important in helping them get the most out of available leisure time on business trips. The example cited was Amsterdam, where a Wi-Fi grid across the city now means anywhere can become a mobile office. And almost half of those surveyed believe they would regularly take advantage of local social activities in the immediate area while on business trips if local information were available wirelessly on their PDA or laptop.

It may be hard to believe but the survey's sponsors, HP, can help set up wireless networks, particularly with the business user in mind.