Week in Review
There will be no more free rides through TSA’s Precheck program, according to Skift’s Grant Martin who reports that as of this week, TSA is finally drawing its managed inclusion program to a close. Managed inclusion was a way to funnel “low risk” passengers through Precheck lines, cutting down traffic in standard security lines and balancing the load across checkpoints – even if those passengers were not a part of the Precheck program. GBTA has long been pushing for the end of managed inclusion and it was an issue that GBTA Members took to Capitol Hill during this year’s Legislative Symposium.
The Toronto Sun writes that hotels are using apps and Twitter to better connect with guests and “make your stay as much about technology as it is about threadcounts.” USA Today reports that hotels are also trying to take business centers to the next level to meet the needs of today’s road warrior.
In airline news, Travel Weekly reports on a study showing airline ancillary revenues grew to $17.49 per passenger in 2014, up 8.5% and ancillary revenue earned by the five largest U.S carriers went up by $2.6 billion, or 18.7% year over year. PBS Newshour covers the effect of airline mergers on ticket prices in small and large cities writing that prices have remained steady in the nation’s 10 busiest airports, but that at the next 90 biggest airports, airlines have raised fares more than 6 percent on average and cut available seating by more than 14 percent.
In industry news, Expedia Inc. has won U.S. antitrust approval to buy rival Orbitz Worldwide Inc. for $1.3 billion, according to Travel Daily News. Also, Hotel Marketing reports on a study measuring customers’ digital experiences showing that for 21 of the UK’s leading travel brands mobile experiences are now better traditional websites. Finally, Tnooz interviews an expert about how to stop mobile booking abandonment.
Earlier this week, GBTA and VDR announced Egencia President Rob Greyber as a Centre Stage speaker at their joint conference taking place in Frankfurt, November 9-11. GBTA and The Wharton School also celebrated a milestone this week – 15 years of offering the prestigious GLP program.