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January 25, 2021

Business Travel + Payments News for the Week: January 25

January is a month of new beginnings and the corporate travel industry felt the fundamental shift in its trajectory in many ways — a new administration, streamlined health and safety procedures, and even signals from the market that the world is ready to get back to in-person meetings ASAP.

Equally as exciting, however, is the support TripActions has received not only from teammates and customers, but also investors who are bullish about the future of business travel and TripActions’ part in crafting a completely new way to book and manage travel and expenses in 2021 and beyond.

Last week TripActions announced it raised $155 million in Series E funding at an increased valuation of $5 billion to deliver a seamless, all-in-one travel and spend management platform to help get the world back to business. Tech, business, and travel publications across the U.S., Europe, and Asia reported on the funding as a strong signal that business travel is poised for a comeback, however, it must be managed differently than ever before.

To learn more about just what the funding means for TripActions and the market at large, you can read more at VentureBeat, TechCrunch, CNBC, Business Insider, Reuters, Financial Post, PYMNTS, and dozens more.

And remember, as you chart a path to return to business travel, the free-to-the-public TripActions Business Travel Recovery™ Tool and the COVID-19 Reports are powerful tools for rebuilding your T&E program. They’ll help you assess the safety of travel, understand any associated government regulations, and use other pertinent real-time data to guide policy decisions. You can also explore the most pressing industry topics on the TripActions Community, which offers valuable insights from travel managers, finance leaders, HR professionals, and others.

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

3 Themes Corporate Travel Managers Need to Focus On During 2021 [Skift]

With fundamental changes to travel habits and patterns on the horizon, the role of the corporate travel manager continues to evolve. Corporate travel managers today are collaborating more closely with executive teams and are also on the front line on how to navigate changes to office culture, remote work, and the rising importance of sustainability.

Delta Adds Chief Health Officer Role [Business Travel News]

Delta Air Lines has hired Mayo Clinic executive Henry Ting as its chief health officer, a new position at the carrier and one that will likely see more airlines create in 2021. By bringing health officials permanently on board, airlines can continue to iterate their products and services for the traveling public.

New COVID-19 Test Requirements for International Flights to the U.S. Begin [USA Today]

As of Tuesday, travelers boarding international flights to the United States have a big hurdle to clear. For the first time since the pandemic began, all passengers ages 2 and older must present a negative coronavirus test taken no more than three days before their flight.

Business Travel Is Back and It’s Weirder Than Ever Before [Wired]

The race is on to become the world’s “safe space” – a low-risk Covid environment for meetings and conferences. And there are two contenders: Singapore and Dubai.

The Corporate Card Faces New Hurdles In AP Departments [PYMNTS.com]

Although commercial cards are evolving to gain traction in more B2B payment scenarios — particularly, accounts payable (AP) — new challenges emerge that can slow down the rate of adoption. Here, PYMNTS examines the tactics industry players use to overcome hurdles.

Business travel Will ‘Snap Back' Sooner Than Expected, Says Real Estate Finance CEO [Yahoo! Finance]

Although people say the overnight business trip to win a deal, meet with a recruit, or hold a team meeting is a thing of the past, Willy Walker, chief executive and chairman of commercial real estate financing company Walker & Dunlop, strong disagrees. The moment a competitor does take that flight for an in-person meeting, he will have the option to go with Zoom or also meet the potential client. And the choice - if you want to win the deal - is clear.

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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