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Outlook Strong for 2019 U.S. Domestic Business Travel

Business Travel News (BTN)·11 January 2019
Domestic business travel will grow faster in 2019 than it did the past three years, according to the U.S. Travel Association, and for the period from December 2018 through May 2019, it will grow 3.2 percent year over year. Strong corporate profits and the near-team outlook for business investment point to 2019 starting off strong for business travel. According to the National Federation of Independent Business Professionals and the Business Roundtable, optimism from both small and large companies about the economy is high. "We think that business investment is going to carry forward and business travel along with that will continue to be compelled in the first half of this year,"said USTA SVP of research David Huether.

Shutdown Increasing Corporate Travel Risks

Business Travel News (BTN)·11 January 2019
As the U.S. government shutdown turned three weeks old, the odds of tangible and lasting effects on the travel community—disrupted trips or, even worse, security risks—are getting higher. In the initial weeks, the impact on corporate travel was more on the level of a "hassle," such as reported longer lines at some security checkpoints, said Bruce McIndoe, founder and president of global travel risk management firm WorldAware, formerly iJet. If the shutdown persists for a few more weeks, however, there is "an increasing threat to the system" as Transportation Security Administration personnel, air traffic controllers, inspectors and other critical members of the aviation industry don't receive paychecks, he said. "You'll have individuals peel off and look for other opportunities for income, and you'll start having holes," McIndoe said. "People will be pushed to work overtime, which creates more stress. In the unlikely event that this thing moves into months, then you just had a rapidly escalating risk of a catastrophic failure in the system."

Corporate Travelers Favor Bleisure & Card Rewards

Business Travel News (BTN)· 8 January 2019
Corporate travelers were drawn to bleisure trips in 2018 and preferred using personal credit cards during business travel, a new study from Wex and Mastercard found. Of the more than 375 business travelers the companies surveyed as part of their 2019 Travel Trends and Expectations report, 55 percent tended to extend business trips to further explore cities.

2018's Most Punctual Airlines Globally

Business Travel News (BTN)· 4 January 2019
Among the world's 20 mega carriers, five U.S. carriers placed among the 10 most punctual, according to OAG's 2019 Punctuality League report: Alaska Airlines, Delta Airlines, Southwest, United Airlines and American Airlines. OAG labels a flight as on time if it arrives/departs within 15 minutes of the scheduled time. Among mega carriers, defined by number of scheduled flights, Latam Airlines Group was the most punctual. ANA was second, followed by Japan Air Lines with 84 percent.

Qatar Takes Stake in China Southern

Business Travel News (BTN)· 2 January 2019
Qatar Airways Group has acquired a 5 percent stake in China Southern Airlines. The investment indicates "opportunities for us to work together and build a long-term relationship in ways that would bring benefits to customers of both airlines," according to Qatar Airways chief executive Akbar Al Baker.

Business Travel Spending Increased YOY in Q3 2018

Business Travel News (BTN)·26 December 2018
The average total cost of a U.S. domestic business trip rose 8 percent year of year to $1,073 during the third quarter, driven by a 16 percent increase in hotel costs, according to client spending data from Travel Leaders Corporate.

United Nabs ExpressJet for $70 Million

Business Travel News (BTN)·18 December 2018
United Airlines has reached a deal to acquire ExpressJet from SkyWest for $70 million. Under terms of the agreement, SkyWest will maintain ownership of the CRJ aircraft currently in service for ExpressJet and will lease 20 CRJ200s to ExpressJet for up to five years.

Delta Plans Boston Growth in 2019

Business Travel News (BTN)·10 December 2018
Delta and its partners will add about 30 new daily departures out of Boston Logan International Airport next year, including "service to the top five business markets requested by our corporate customers," Delta president Glen Hauenstein said.

October Global Air Travel Demand Grew 6.3 Percent

Business Travel News (BTN)· 7 December 2018
Global air travel demand grew 6.3 percent year over year in October, according to the International Air Transport Association.

Sifting Through the European Airline Demises

Business Travel News (BTN)·28 November 2018
The graveyard of European airlines has become a bit fuller recently, and analysts said more are likely to fall amid consolidation and higher fuel costs.

IBM's Data-Forward Travel Program

Business Travel News (BTN)·28 November 2018
About three years ago, IBM's travel program stopped to look around and ask itself some big questions. Namely, what did it need to do to lead IBM travel into the future? What would the future even look like? An answer to the latter question wasn't clear, but IBM global category leader of T&E Shawn Busby said it was plain to see that the future centered around what IBM did with its travel data.

Executive Travel Analyzes Frequent Flyer Program Buying Power

Business Travel News (BTN)·27 November 2018
When it comes to long-haul travel, American Airlines' AAdvantage program offers the most purchasing power of the three largest U.S. carriers' rewards programs, according to analysis conducted by travel management company Executive Travel.

Survey: Weaker U.S. Hotel Demand, Travel Budget Increases & Airbnb Slowdown Expected by Corporates in 2019

Business Travel News (BTN)·19 November 2018
In its annual AlphaWise Global Hotel Corporate Travel Survey, Morgan Stanley Research found that overall hotel demand for corporates is expected to increase year over year in 2019 but that growth in Europe will eclipse that of the U.S. This comes as a greater number of respondents in this year's survey expect their 2019 travel budgets for both hotel and air to increase.

Troovo Takes Home 2018 Innovator of the Year Award

Business Travel News (BTN)·12 November 2018
BTN's 2018 Innovator of the Year just may be the company that finally brings virtual payments into the mainstream for corporate travel. Judges at the BTN Group's recent Innovate conference awarded the prized title to robotic process automation, or RPA, provider Troovo. The company aims to take the pain—and the high price—out of generating and using virtual cards.

Wex Enters Japan

Business Travel News (BTN)· 5 November 2018
Wex Inc. is making its first foray into Japan. It will issue virtual payment cards for Japanese payment network JCB. Set to launch in the second half of 2019, the partnership makes Wex JCB’s first issuer of virtual cards.

Delta Enters Bidding for Alitalia

Business Travel News (BTN)· 2 November 2018
Delta has emerged among the latest round of bidders for Alitalia, and low-cost carrier EasyJet also remains interested in the Italian carrier, according to Bloomberg. Italian state-owned railroad company Ferrovie dello Stato has made an offer, as well.

Travel & Corporate Solutions Continues Driving Strong Growth for Wex

Business Travel News (BTN)· 1 November 2018
Wex Inc.'s travel and corporate solutions revenue surged 36 percent year over year during the third quarter to $82.8 million. The segment's performance helped revenue jump 18 percent to $382.7 million, marking Wex's ninth straight quarter of double-digit revenue growth.

Air Canada Premium Travel Demand Rose in Q3

Business Travel News (BTN)· 1 November 2018
Rising demand for premium class travel helped boost Air Canada's passenger revenue 11.2 percent year over year in the third quarter to $5.02 billion Canadian.

Uber Adds Uber Eats to Business Platform

Business Travel News (BTN)· 1 November 2018
Uber has launched a business management offering for its Uber Eats food delivery service as part of the Uber for Business platform. Uber Eats, a separate app that provides delivery service from participating restaurants, launched in 2014.

Air France-KLM Q2 Revenue Rises

Business Travel News (BTN)·31 October 2018
Air France-KLM revenue increased 5.1 percent year over year to 6.43 billion euros in the third quarter as the carrier resolved labor disputes that have hindered its performance significantly.

Uber Turns Key on Rydoo Integration

Business Travel News (BTN)·30 October 2018
T&E platform Rydoo can automatically populate Uber for Business receipts into Rydoo's expense app. Employees then can submit those expenses with a single click. In August, Uber for Business announced its intention to integrate with Rydoo, along with Expensya, Happay, Zeno by Serko and Zoho Expense.

Gant Travel Strikes Partnership Agreement with Airbnb for Work

Business Travel News (BTN)·30 October 2018
Gant Travel has formed a partnership with Airbnb for Work to make Airbnb content available to all its Concur Travel customers.

Omega World Travel Releases Mobile App & Alexa Data Analytics Capability

Business Travel News (BTN)·26 October 2018
Omega World Travel has released a mobile app for traveler use called Omega Go. The app links out to the apps for online booking tools SAP Concur Travel, Amadeus Cytric Travel & Expense and Sabre GetThere. The travel management company also can connect to other mobile-friendly OBTs. The app also can be customized to include a client's logo and include agency contact information specific to that client, said Omega VP of IT and data analytics Nadim Hajje.

Fuel Cost Increases Offset American Airlines' Q3 Corporate Revenue Growth

Business Travel News (BTN)·25 October 2018
Strong corporate travel demand helped propel American Airlines to record third-quarter revenue this year, though higher fuel prices ate up those gains.

Hilton CEO Speaks to Corporate Sentiment & Rate Negotiations

Business Travel News (BTN)·25 October 2018
Hilton president and CEO Christopher Nassetta pegged 2019 corporate rate increases in the 2 percent to 3 percent range during the company's third-quarter earnings call. Last year, Hilton projected rates to end the year between 1 percent and 3 percent higher than in 2016, and the actual increase landed on the modest end of that range, close to 1 percent. However, the outlook is improving and business travel is looking strong for next year, based on "the latest and greatest update" Nassetta received from Hilton's corporate sales team this week.

Travel and Transport Assumes Full Ownership of Radius Travel

Business Travel News (BTN)·22 October 2018
Travel management company Travel and Transport has fully acquired global travel agency network Radius Travel, having completed the process over the past few years of buying out the network's other two owners. As Radius Travel president and CEO Shannon Hyland moves to his new title of SVP of global services for Travel and Transport, he said it "first and foremost will be business as usual."

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