What to Know Now

In Monday’s Business Traveler we briefly mentioned a report penned by Delta highlighting the costs and difficulties associated with implementing a new air traffic control system — a system sorely needed by the national airline industry.

Big surprise: that support may have been a bit biased. In a biting rebuttal published on reason.org, Robert Poole points out numerous flaws in the study and that Delta may have its own seedy reasons for fighting a new ATC system. In short, new ATC would open more slots at JFK (where Delta doesn’t want more competition) and it would also force the airline to update its older fleet with new equipment — a costly endeavor.

But screw everyone else, right? While Poole and reason.org surely have their own bias, it’s pretty tough to argue with a new system that increases safety and eases congestion. Thanks a lot Delta.

Social Quote of the Day

I swear you can feel the nadir of the seasons in NYC. Collective & human. Every train I’ve been on in the last 24 hrs has had an incident.

– @TheBrockJohnson | Benjamin Johnson, Host of Marketplace Tech

TAP Portugal A319 CS-TTG

Airlines

Portugal Decides It Can’t Let TAP Go and Buys Half of it for $2.1 Billion: The Portuguese government says it has agreed to buy 50 percent of the country’s carrier TAP Air Portugal for 1.9 million euros ($2.1 million). Read more at Skift

American Air and Delta Are Lowering Fares Even as Demand Increases: Reports from American Airlines and United Airlines show that air travel demand is growing modestly and there aren’t many empty seats, but average fares continue to decline. Read more at Skift

What is Delta Airlines Elite Status Worth in 2016? With a new year comes a fresh slate for working toward airline elite status, and if you’re just getting started, you may be wondering which program will get you the most value. Read more at The Points Guy

Spirit Air’s New CEO Wants to Emulate Ryanair’s Profitable Attitude Adjustment: Similar to what Ryanair did in 2014, when it tried to ditch its gruff relations with passengers, Spirit Airlines’ new CEO wants to give its operational performance and reputation a makeover given a torrent of consumer complaints. Read more at Skift

miami-mia

Airports

Tampa Airport’s Gun Seizures Put it on Fast-Track to Top 3 Offenders in U.S.: Gun confiscations at Tampa International Airport security checkpoints have been rising, and if the numbers stay high, the airport could become among the top three in the nation for firearms seizures. Read more at Skift

British Airways to Take on Ryanair at Stansted With Party-Friendly Flights: British Airways will start offering holiday flights from London Stansted airport, giving it a fourth base serving the U.K. capital and putting it in direct competition with Ryanair Holdings Plc. Read more at Skift

Miami Airport Becomes One of the First to Connect Consumers With Beacons: Miami International Airport has announced the launch of its new fully localized app tomorrow, intended to make finding the gate, shopping, and dining at the airport easier for visitors and locals alike. Read more at Skift

concur mobile

Tech

Survey: Business Travel in Europe Was Mostly Unaffected By the Paris Attacks: Most businesses in the United States and Europe did not change European travel plans following the November terrorist attacks in Paris, new polls show. Read more at Skift

SAP Invests in Travel Startups Through Concur’s Perfect Trip Fund: SAP’s 2014 acquisition of Concur Technologies in December 2014 did not lead to the death of Concur’s Perfect Trip Fund, as we had incorrectly foreseen. Read more at Skift

Interview: Google on What Makes Google’s Travel Ambitions Different: Oliver Heckmann, a Google vet of nine years, took the helm of the 850-person Google Flights and Hotel Ads product teams in the fall of 2014. Heckmann gave an exclusive interview to Skift from Google’s Mountain View, California headquarters prior to the launch of Google’s new vacation-destination search in late 2015. Read more at Skift

Two Bellmen Two 2

Hotels

Exclusive: Major Hotel Chain Won Financial Protections in TripAdvisor Instant Booking: As TripAdvisor Instant Booking kicks into gear it appears as though it is breaking new ground and becoming a hotel-friendly channel — for chains that sign up, that is. Read more at Skift

These 9 hotels were made famous by major films: Just like it does with actors, Hollywood can make, or break, a hotel. Read more at Road Warrior Voices

Marriott’s Content Ambitions Grow With New Two Bellmen Movie: The new Two Bellmen Two short film by Marriott Content Studio launched last Friday, produced on-location at the JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Dubai. Read more at Skift

Why Wyndham Is Sticking With HomeAway to Move Vacation Rentals: It’s only a matter of time until more timeshare companies use sharing economy services like Airbnb to distribute their products. Read more at Skift

How Airbnb is Quietly Positioning Itself to Disrupt the Meetings Industry: As Airbnb bookings grow exponentially year-over-year, there are growing numbers of business travelers who’ve booked Airbnb previously for leisure travel, and now they want the same customized experience when they travel on business. Read more at Skift

Your Turn

Techradar has a new Editor in Chief and it’s Darren Murph, formerly from AOL/Engadget. Congratulations Darren.

Tips and Comments

Can be sent to gm[at]skift[dot]com or to @grantkmartin

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Photo Credit: A Delta Bombardier jet. Delta Air Lines