Business Travel News for the Week: June 15
Europe is opening its borders this month, and we couldn’t be more excited to get back to business travel safely. TripActions has quietly been building our foundation to better serve our customers in and traveling to EMEA. Just read the Q&A with EMEA Sales Leader Christopher Vik to get the lowdown on what’s coming.
Despite the reopening of borders and increasing passenger numbers across all airlines, we’re still at an interesting inflection point in the business world. We’ve learned that some meetings can be done remote while others require that face-to-face connection. Our Groups & Meetings team helps customers take steps when you decide to take your in-person conference virtual. On the podcast, we explore the balance between remote and in-person and specifically how remote-first companies rely on business travel to keep culture and connections alive.
We’re right alongside you and all of our customers and partners navigating next steps. To make sense of changing rules and regulations, you can track updates on the TripActions Business Travel Recovery Tool, explore the most pressing industry topics on the TripActions Community, or click right into the coronavirus report in the TripActions Admin Dashboard.
You can check out past weekly news roundups here. Now, here’s the top news of the week.
‘People are Getting in Planes’: The Travel Business is Picking Up [New York Times]
After months of staying at home during the pandemic, Americans are heading to vacation destinations like Florida and national parks. The nation’s largest airlines are preparing for a limited rebound next month as more Americans book vacations and some in the industry say the recovery is already underway.
The new recommendations reiterate some already-shared advice — wash hands frequently and wear face masks — while also offering new tips designed to educate people on assessing risk and making smart choices. The guidelines cover how to approach each aspect of the travel experience from security lines to public transportation safely.
Some businesses have been preparing for the return of business travel for weeks or even months. But those that hit the pause button indefinitely are realizing it is now time to start looking at their travel policies with new eyes and thinking through strategies to handle unused vouchers and refunds. TripActions is, of course, here to help.
Emirates CEO: Business Travel Won’t be Killed by COVID-19 [Simple Flying]
A temporary shift to virtual meetings has led some people to ask if this could be a new norm for networking or if business travel will resume in the same capacity as before the pandemic. While many think that business travel will alter significantly, Sir Tim Clark doesn’t subscribe to this view. He references society’s resiliency and the need for human connection as driving the return.
As Skift Corporate Travel Editor Matthew Parson summarizes, “Even for the likes of Zoom, corporate travel is perceived as important to connect with people.” Phil Perry, Zoom’s head of UK and Ireland, talks about how virtual conference technology fills in gaps but business travel is a necessary part of building a business and face to face interaction can not be replaced with a screen.
Biometrics are the future for many things. For travel, using fingerprints or an iris scan instead of using a driver’s license for identification is already almost mainstream thanks to Clear. Now airlines are experimenting with facial recognition. As the industry rethinks travel standards in a post-Covid world, there is no doubt that biometrics will play a big role.
For more news and actionable insights from the business travel community, subscribe to Open for Business: A Corporate T&E Podcast Powered by TripActions on your favorite podcast platform.