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January 4, 2021

Business Travel + Payments News for the Week: January 4

Samantha Shankman
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News
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Happy new year! We’re off to a strong start: Vaccinations are ramping up around the world, and businesses are looking to return to more collaborative, in-person meetings. Holiday travel marked an important milestone in 2020 travel, with more than one million passengers boarding planes per day over Christmas. As people travel to see friends and family, the new normal will become a part of the routine, and business travel will begin to rise.

As you chart a path to return to business travel, keep in mind our free-to-the-public TripActions Business Travel Recovery™ Tool and the COVID-19 Reports; they’re powerfu 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 is what’s happening across the industry today. You can check out past weekly news roundups here.

The Future of Business Travel [Forbes]

It’s hard to under-appreciate the importance of business travel to the economy, and a study from Harvard’s Growth Lab underlined the vital role business travel plays in the economy. The research shows that tacit knowledge is crucial to economic growth, but virtual communication is undermining its effectiveness.

Predictions for the State of Travel in 2021 [The Points Guy]

From fees to points to immunity passports, TPG editorial director and industry veteran Scott Mayerowitz shares his insights for the year ahead. While travel has indefinitely changed, it’s clear that suppliers are working hard for travelers to provide the safest (and in some cases improved) facilities and operations.

Singapore Changi Reinvents Itself for Return of Business Travel [Bloomberg]

Singapore’s Changi Airport, routinely voted the world’s best and a key part of the city-state’s psyche, is reinventing itself for the Covid era and beyond. The airport is offering glamping for families at its nature-themed entertainment complex, while also building a new hotel/apartment complex where business travelers can stay quarantine-free for short-term stays.

Fintech Startups are Increasingly Focusing on Profitability [TechCrunch]

Fintech startups have been massively successful over the past few years. The biggest consumer startups managed to attract millions of users and have raised some of the biggest funding rounds in late-stage venture capital. With the challenges of 2020, some fintech startups have shifted their focus from a “growth at all costs” mindset to a path to profitability.

How Latin America is Fast Becoming the Capital of Fintech [Finance Magnates]

All across the world, innovative fintech products are beginning to bring financial services to underserved populations and into markets where traditional banks don’t dare to tread. Nowhere is this truer than in Latin America. According to the World Bank, about 50% of the population there lacks a bank account, and many more lack access to common financial services the rest of the developed world takes for granted.

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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