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We took last Thursday off to gorge on turkey and stuffing, but we’re back today with the latest in corporate travel.
Lyft’s first major foray into corporate travel, through a partnership with Carlson Wagonlit Travel, has finally been unveiled. Travel managers will have access to better analytics about what their travelers are up to, so that’s good.
Uber has a commanding lead in popularity among business travelers, but when has Uber’s scale ever stopped Lyft from making pragmatic, useful upgrades to its service? We’ll see where Lyft goes from here as it gets ready for an IPO sometime in the future.
There’s a lot more below, ranging from a look at Hogg Robinson Group’s airline distribution aspirations to updates on how global airlines are (finally) making business class better for travelers again. Check it out.
— Andrew Sheivachman, Business Travel Editor
Business of Buying
Lyft Finally Goes Corporate With Carlson Wagonlit Travel Deal: Lyft is playing catch up in the corporate travel sector, and partnerships with the major global travel management companies are a good way to increase adoption. Uber’s lead, however, remains enormous.
IAG Is Bringing Discount Airline Level to Paris: IAG is obviously pleased with Level’s performance in Barcelona, but Paris is likely to be a bigger challenge given the strength of Air France-KLM in that market and its new millennial-focused airline Joon.
Lufthansa to Offer Revamped Business Class With Seats 7 Feet Long: Lufthansa had nothing approaching an on-time arrival when it came to introducing lie-flat seats in 2013, and now it hopes to get a leg or two up on the competition. We’ll leave it to the reviewers to give us the pros and cons once the new seats are airborne.
Delta Brings Back Complimentary Upgrades for Frequent Flyers: Delta is slowly restoring benefits once-lost to SkyMiles members, but it’s more of a competitive move against other carriers than an olive branch for passengers.
Airline Food Conundrum – Paid Meals Winning Out Over Freebies: Airline food isn’t always tasty, but passengers probably shouldn’t compare it to what they find in a restaurant. Delivering food to an aircraft is a logistical challenge, and it’s amazing the system works as well as it does.
Safety + Security
New Expensify Feature Raises Privacy Concerns: Maybe using a marketplace to scan receipts isn’t a good idea if any of its workers can access your customers’ data. Just a thought.
Disruption + Innovation
Blockchain for Hotel Distribution Will Come Down to the Economics: Decentralized applications for hotel distribution will soon live side-by-side with existing channels.
Onefinestay CEO Views Hyper Personalization as Next Stage of Luxury Rentals: In other words, don’t expect AccorHotels to be vying for Wyndham’s European vacation rental business anytime soon.
Hogg Robinson Thinks It Has a Technology Edge on Its Corporate Travel Competitors: IATA’s New Distribution Capability appears to finally be gaining traction in corporate travel. Airlines want it to succeed as much as travel management companies, which will have access to a greater amount of content like seat upgrades and other ancillary products.
Airbnb Will Finally Let You Split Payments Among Multiple People: Paying for Airbnb rentals just got easier for small-to-medium sized businesses.
Skift Business Travel Editor Andrew Sheivachman [firstname.lastname@example.org] curates the Skift Corporate Travel Innovation Report. Skift emails the newsletter every Thursday.