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December 22, 2020

Business Travel + Payments News for the Week: December 22

Samantha Shankman
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News
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TripActions started the Business Travel weekly series to highlight the top stories in corporate travel and payments exactly one year ago. After a full trip around the sun, the news this week touches on the importance of sustainability and the potential of technology in transforming the corporate travel experience. While these are still important and relevant themes, the news seems pale in comparison to the tumultuous 52 weeks for the travel industry since that launch post.

In the last year, the travel community has weathered one of the most difficult years on record. And looking forward, TripActions couldn’t be more optimistic about the future. Our community is more resilient and our commitment to the power of technology to keep people safe and businesses thriving is stronger than ever.

Thank you for being a part of our community this year, for checking in to read the most relevant news in our world, and for bringing it back to your colleagues and partners. Although we won’t be publishing the news next week, we’d like to share the moments that helped shape travel in 2020 and predictions for what lies ahead. Then we’ll be back on January 4 with the top stories in corporate travel and payments. Stay safe and enjoy the holidays.

Now, here is what’s happening across the industry today. You can check out past weekly news roundups here.

Vaccine News Leads to Spike in Travel Bookings for 2021 and Beyond [The Washington Post]

A dozen travel companies and organizations — including cruise lines, tour operators, travel agents and resorts — told The Washington Post that they are seeing bookings pick up for the second half of the next year after a brutal stretch that brought the world to a standstill. Booking trends suggest that the masses will begin traveling again in the summer of 2021, with a swell expected to stretch into the end of the year and beyond.

Business Travelers Want to See Major Changes From Airlines [Condé Nast Traveler]

As the air travel industry looks to rebuild operations in 2021, one thing is certain: airlines will compete to win back the all-too-valuable business traveler. This article outlines five ways experts — including TripActions Chief Product Officer and CMO — see the business traveler’s flight experience changing next year.

United and CDC Work Together on Contact Tracing Initiative for All International and Domestic Flights [United Airlines]

United Airlines last week announced a program to collect customer contact information for all international and domestic flights. This effort represents the airline industry's most comprehensive public health contact information collection program to date and the immediate access to the data will better support the CDC's efforts to curb the spread of COVID-19 in the United States and around the world.

FDA Authorizes Antigen Test as First Over-the-Counter Fully At-Home Diagnostic Test for COVID-19 [FDA]

The U.S. FDA issued an emergency use authorization for the first over-the-counter, fully at-home diagnostic test for COVID-19 last week. Travel confidence is growing as access to testing becomes more prevalent, and it becomes more evident exactly how people will soon be able to travel safely.

Delta's New Travel Corridor Offers Quarantine-Free Access to the Netherlands [CNN]

The latest pandemic-era protocol from Delta Air Lines will let some passengers coming from the US have quarantine-free entry to Amsterdam. Passengers on flights from Atlanta to Amsterdam will be required to submit a negative COVID-19 test and, therefore, skip quarantine requirements. This is a positive step towards re-establishing business travel between the U.S. and Europe.

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 and join the TripActions Community.

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