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The Skift Corporate Travel Innovation Report is our weekly newsletter focused on the future of corporate travel, the big fault lines of disruption for travel managers and buyers, the innovations emerging from the sector, and the changing business traveler habits that are upending how corporate travel is packaged, bought, and sold.
New security technology has the potential to speed up security checkpoints and enhance the ability of business travelers to get through airport security quickly.
This week we take a look at the ways that different forms of biometric security methods, ranging from face-scanning to fingerprint verification, could make business travel simpler and safer in the future. We also explore the privacy ramifications of such technology and the questions the travel industry should be considering as security measures continue to evolve.
Check below for the other news you need to know, like an expense giant’s move into the travel booking arena and ways that European airlines are innovating.
— Andrew Sheivachman, Senior Writer
Business of Buying
Certify Buys Booking Tool in Latest Travel and Expense Tie-Up: Expense providers, which have typically connected with clients and their travel management companies, are moving deeper into the business travel booking arena. Read more at Skift
EasyJet Beats Rival Ryanair to Long-Haul Connections: Ryanair has been talking about offering long-haul connections for some time, so it is a coup for EasyJet to get there first. Read more at Skift
United Backtracks on Basic Economy Fares as American Expands Them: As one carrier, United, backs off on basic economy, another, American Airlines, doubles down. Will this clear the field for American? Perhaps. Read more at Skift
Short-Term Rental Ban in Berlin for Airbnb and Others Appears to Be Eroding: Despite the latest court ruling loosening restrictions on short-term rentals in Berlin, there are still plenty of questions left regarding what the city’s laws on home-sharing really mean. Read more at Skift
Safety + Security
Supreme Court Agrees to Retain Trump Ban on Most Refugees: The Trump administration’s travel and refugee bans are set to expire within weeks. If the federal government ends up renewing them, we expect the cycle of executive orders and litigation to play out again. Read more at Skift
UK and France Step Up Hurricane Irma Relief After Criticism From Tourists and Residents: The UK and France are snapping into action and sending aid to their overseas territories that suffered destruction from Hurricane Irma. That’s good news, but both countries probably should have mobilized sooner and planned out their responses more effectively. Read more at Skift
Disruption + Innovation
Business Travelers Weigh Ease of Biometrics Against Privacy Concerns: Business travelers are embracing the increasing use of facial-recognition software and fingerprint reading at airports to speed lines, but privacy advocates raise concerns about the security of information and its potential use. Employees eventually may be required to divulge their biometric data in order to do their job. Read more at Skift
Supersonic Flights Could Be a Thing Again If the Market Is Large Enough: We think there’s probably demand for this airplane for transatlantic routes. Wouldn’t it be great to fly between London and New York in fewer than three hours? But the airplane would have to make a fuel stop on longer routes, so it might be less useful from, say, Tokyo to Los Angeles or London. Read more at Skift
Google Sues to Block EU Antitrust Fine as Travel Probe Could Be on the Agenda: Google’s move to appeal the fine will tie up the matter in litigation for an extended period. Meanwhile, much of the travel industry is waiting for the other boot to drop — a probe into Google’s travel practices, as EU officials have hinted. Read more at Skift
Virgin Atlantic CEO on Loyalty and Low-Cost Competition: Virgin Atlantic has a strong brand, but for years it has lagged far behind British Airways in most categories. The upstart has just been too small to be a bona fide competitor. But Virgin Atlantic is finally taking action to ensure it will be more nimble going forward. Read more at Skift