Travel News Round Up – August/ September 2021

The corporate travel industry is constantly changing. Oversee’s latest news roundup helps you stay on top of those changes, from predictions for the future to new travel tools.

NDC content renewal with united airlines and Amadeus partnership

The Amadeus Travel Platform and United Airlines recently renewed their distribution agreement. This latest version will include content enabled for New Distribution Capability (NDC). The two companies are optimistic about the launch. After all, they have already pilot-tested distributing NDC content with specific customers. Expect to see the full launch during Q3. This is just one of the many Amadeus NDC agreements from recent months. Other agreements include ones with American Airlines, International Airlines Group, Air France-KLM, Singapore Airlines, and Qantas. This combination means that Amadeus has had its NDC program live in all its major regions. NDC content solidification among Amadeus’ main regions will positively impact those markets looking to purchase NDC content but previously didn’t have access via the GDS.

Expanded insights from American Express Global Business Travel

America Express Global Business Travel recently introduced several new functions. Each will give business travel managers more actionable insights. Another update is the addition of COVID guidelines – specific to an itinerary. These now appear via their Neo online booking, with the information coming from the Travel Vitals data hub. After making a booking, travelers receive emails reminding them about COVID requirements. There is also a new Live Travel Dashboard for the Premier Insights data visualization. This updated dashboard lets clients view where client companies send travelers. There are views for cities, countries, or regions. The idea is that this should help travel managers adjust travel policies based on a destination’s overall travel activity. These insights complement Oversee’s disruption insights tool that pulls unused ticket expiration data so that when a traveler is flying to a destination, the travel manager cannot only ensure their safety via the GBT platform but can also ensure that they are using an unused ticket before it expires.

Deloitte notes an increase in corporate travel but without a full recovery

Recent data from Deloitte confirms that corporate travel is returning but falls short of a full recovery. Deloitte predicts that we will have to wait another year, if not longer before corporate travel returns to pre-pandemic volumes. To create the report, Deloitte surveyed 150 travel managers and executives in the United States. Based on the survey results, Deloitte predicts 2021’s fourth quarter will see about 25 to 35 percent of the business travel volume from 2019’s fourth quarter. For reference, the second-quarter spending in 2021 was only 10 to 15 percent of that from the same period in 2019. According to Deloitte, several factors will contribute to this prediction. Those include corporate offices reopening, vaccination rates, and border restrictions potentially easing. However, Deloitte did point out that if the United States experiences a severe outbreak or the vaccination progress declines, this may not be the case. Deloitte’s predictions assume that COVID-related developments will continue. If that happens, the company predicts that by 2022’s second quarter, business travel will be up to 40 to 60 percent of 2019’s period. It will reach 65 to 80 percent of levels by the fourth quarter. Deloitte does not offer predictions as to whether travel will rebound more than this.

SAP concur global business travel survey highlights requirements for corporate travel to recover

The recent SAP Concur Global Business Travel Survey surveyed nearly 4,000 participants. On a positive note, stress during travel is down to 31 percent from 45 percent in last year’s survey. More importantly, 89 percent of corporate travelers believe their companies should prioritize their safety. This includes providing options and flexibility for travel and hotels. It also includes booking higher-quality seats on planes and choosing direct flights. Indeed with the uptick in travel, Oversee has also seen an increase in identified savings across our customer base. For example, across our customers in 2019, the average identified savings was 3.2% which grew to 4.19% in the past year. The  SAP survey noted that the generation that places the most importance on this flexibility is Gen Z, with 59 percent saying they prefer choosing where and when to work. Both Gen Z and Millennials predict businesses will let travelers control more aspects of their

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FairFly Rebrands as Oversee Underpinning Travel Spend Optimization Leadership

The new brand builds on the company’s commitment to providing an all-in-one platform to optimize corporate travel spend and AI-powered automation tools for travel agencies.

The switch to a new company name comes during exponential growth for Oversee (formerly FairFly). Its outstanding customer base testifies to the business success of Oversee currently serving 29 of the Fortune 100, 86 of the Fortune 500, and 38 of BTN Corporate Travel 100 companies.

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