Corporate travel communities have reached a significant turning point in which we’re now actively planning for a bright 2021. The challenges of the past year have transformed into opportunities and everyone from suppliers to business travelers have adapted expectations and processes for the future. Led by the insights provided by travel managers, organizations are approaching travel with a strategy that will make it safer, better for the planet, and more meaningful and productive than ever before.
Join us along with travel and finance leaders from around the world for important discussions that you can’t find anywhere else. We’re plotting the future in TripActions Office Hours and Workshops, on the TripActions Community, and with our Open for Business T&E podcast. Together we’ll continue to uncover your needs and identify ways to address them as corporate travel managers, finance leaders, HR professionals, and risk executives chart the path forward.
Here are the top conversations that we’re having as a community this week:
Very promising data continues to be released that highlights how safe flying is right now. The International Air Transport Association (IATA) reported last week that one billion people have traveled by air in 2020 with only 44 documented cases of coronavirus transmission. This data, combined with the extensive sanitary procedures now put in place by every airline, underline the safety of traveling by air again. Our community has already started to respond with details of their next flight.
London airports are a major transportation hub where people from around the world have transferred between Europe, the U.S., the Middle East, and Asia for decades. While COVID-19 put a temporary pause on that bustle, UK airports prepared a comprehensive plan for safely facilitating the transfer of international flights. Heathrow was among the first to install pre-departure COVID tests for passengers. The success of this program will build confidence around the world.
“I’ve been fond of saying the first time someone loses a sale to a competitor who showed up in person is the last time they try to make a sales call on Zoom,” United CEO Scott Kirby recently said on an earnings call. While each of the U.S. airlines’ top executives have landed on different predictions for exactly when air travel will match pre-pandemic levels, it’s only a matter of when - not if. What will make the difference is the work that travel managers are doing throughout our community to prepare their organizations to compete at the highest (and safest) level possible again.
It’s not a popular opinion, but those who work in corporate travel know the future is brighter than the past. The challenges of COVID have revealed themselves to be opportunities and this was evident throughout the virtual T&E summit. Between tech innovation and smarter policies poised to adapt at a moment’s notice, organizations have never been better prepared to leverage corporate travel for growth.
To read more about the thoughts and questions on the top of finance and corporate travel leaders’ minds, join us today on the TripActions Community.