Week in Review
The week began with the news outlets abuzz about winter storm Juno that was making its way from the Midwest United States to the Northeast on Monday with the prospects of dumping feet of snow in areas around Boston and NYC. According to USA Today, about 15 percent of the nation’s flights were grounded Tuesday morning as a result of the storm. USA Today did a follow Wednesday up covering how airlines were restarting their schedules following the storm.
Also on Monday, GBTA released a study showing sustainable business travel initiatives on the rise in Europe. In fact, the majority (57 percent) of European-based companies have sustainability initiatives written into their company’s travel policy – a significant increase from 39 percent in 2012.
While last week Marriott backed off its plan to block WiFi signals, the FCC still weighed in this week. The FCC said blocking wireless hotspots is illegal. The agency’s official statement says that blocking an individual’s personal hotspot, as hotels and convention centers have done, is against the law and subject to fines.
In support of GBTA’s position, Airlines for America made a passionate plea against a hike in PFC charges on their blog this week supported by a list of facts they say often get left out of the argument. Talking about taxes and fees and airlines brings us back to fuel surcharges again this week. Air Asia made a big announcement this week abolishing fuel surcharges on its flights fares according to Business Traveller.
Hotelmarketing.com focused on mobile this week. In one article they highlight a report that asserts that travel companies must fully integrate digital channels into their overall business strategies in order to better engage with consumers. Another article calls Google the biggest threat in mobile for hotels and airlines as the company continues to release new travel service features.
Great news for those that like to always be connected: the Airline Passenger Experience Association tells us 2014 was a banner year for high speed in-flight WiFi, with such services expected to become increasingly available in 2015. The Economist tells us how to stay connected and get the most out of your smartphone on international business trips.
Finally, The Business Journals’ Laura Stack tells us four common business travel blunders and how you can avoid them.