Since we skipped last week’s newsletter thanks to the July 4 holiday, I’m going with a Greatest Hits approach to this week’s newsletter.

Skift Travel Tech Editor Sean O’Neill took an in-depth look at how online booking sites are doing more to assist travelers with disabilities.

We’ve covered accessibility before from the meetings side, but it is also important to think about the challenges and experiences faced by attendees when they are booking the lodging for your event, which can cloud the whole experience.

If you have any feedback about the newsletter or news tips, feel free to reach out to me via email at as@skift.com or tweet me @sheivach.

I’ll be attending CVENT Connect 2018 in two weeks; if you would like to meet up just let me know.

— Andrew Sheivachman, Business Travel Editor

The Future of Events and Meetings

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Online Travel Players Boost Accessibility for Travelers With Disabilities: People who want to select a non-smoking room are shown options at most booking sites. The industry needs to be just as helpful for travelers with specific needs for mobility, hearing, or visual challenges. Thankfully several online booking sites are trying to help.

Accor Follows Marriott in Unifying Its Loyalty Program: Accor is walking on thin ice with its most lucrative customers as it merges together the loyalty programs of Accor, Fairmont, Raffles, and Swissôtel. So far, the integration has been nearly flawless.

Amazon’s Alexa for Business Travel Doesn’t Compute Right Now: The big global travel management companies have pivoted to become more like technology companies in recent years. Despite the usual bromides about innovation and user experience, they’re unlikely to invest in voice-powered automation right now. Personalization needs to come first.

Around the Industry

Why Some Events Become Disasters: A lack of adequate planning and misleading marketing can help ruin an event. Don’t do these things.

How Brands Create Authentic Women-Centric Events: Too often, including women in an event comes off as an unwelcome form of tokenism. Here are some examples of organizations that are doing it right.

Facebook Enters Augmented Reality Marketing Game: Snapchat and Instagram have been the leaders in augmented reality on social networks, and now Facebook itself wants a piece of the growing pie.

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Skift Business Travel Editor Andrew Sheivachman [as@skift.com] curates the Skift Meetings Innovation Report. Skift emails the newsletter every Wednesday.

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Photo Credit: Volunteers on an accessibility mapping tour in Berlin. Andi Weiland | SOZIALHELDEN e.V / Flickr