Frequent business travelers just want a good night of sleep and more comfortable flights. There's a big upside for companies that pay for a better, more restful travel experience as well: Their employees won't quit out of existential despair.
How much business travel is too much for the seasoned road warrior? Well, the evidence shows it’s less the frequency of travel than the travel experience itself that leads to botched meetings and self-destructive behavior.
This week I explored a report polling road warriors on what is ruining their lives. Balancing work and life remains a major hurdle, although the elements that improve a business trip aren’t too hard to predict: More sleep and more comfortable flights lead the pack.
There is also evidence that pushing business travelers too hard is leading them to leave their jobs for something requiring less soul-crushing travel that distances them from their families and leads to gluttonous In-N-Out Burger binges (just speaking from recent experience here).
We’ve also got the latest on how U.S. airlines are jacking up fares to outrun rising fuel prices, courtesy of Senior Aviation Business Editor Brian Sumers. Could the recent era of low fares driven by competition be coming to a close? Looks like it, although the airlines have complex arbitrage methods to deal with fluctuations in fuel prices.
— Andrew Sheivachman, Senior Editor
Airlines, Hotels, and Innovation
Frequent Business Travelers Need More Sleep to Survive: I’m tired, you’re tired, we’re all tired when we travel for work. It’s leading employees to burn out and quit, causing problems for travel managers and companies that push their workers too hard. Some sleep and nicer flights can help.
Group Booking Pace Slows in Tight Market for Meetings: New research from Cvent shows that group business is declining for U.S. hotels, and planners are booking room blocks closer to the date of their event than before. This is bad news for hotels, which rely on group bookings to boost business.
Delta Air Lines Sees Premium Profit: Travelers hoping for more free first-class upgrades should probably root for a recession. The economy is too strong for airlines to give away their best seats for free.
United Airlines Avoids Fuel Cost Hit to Earnings With Higher Ticket Prices: We told you United would probably turn things around on finances when it hired revenue whiz Scott Kirby back in August 2016. And look what’s happening. Now, it’s time for the airline to improve its customer service, too.
The Future of Travel
Cvent Buys Social Tables as Event Tech Consolidation Escalates: Cvent is working methodically to expand its offerings in the small meeting space by acquiring Kapow and now Social Tables. Social Tables found success streamlining obvious pain points for planners, which is something Cvent can learn from.
Measuring the Value of Wellness to a Hotel Brand: Every time you turn around these days, a major hotel company is announcing that it has hired a chief wellness officer. But will this wave of devotion to wellness be a phase or a long-lasting phenomenon? Look to the return on investment for that answer.
The TSA Plans to Use More Biometrics at Airport Security Checkpoints: We hear good things about the reliability of facial scans at airports with one exception. JetBlue Airways reports that the system in place at its terminals is not as effective with the oldest travelers as it is with everyone else.
Skift Senior Editor Andrew Sheivachman [[email protected]] curates the Skift Corporate Travel Innovation Report. Skift emails the newsletter every Thursday.
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Photo credit: In this March 17, 2016, file photo, travelers wait in line for security screening at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport in Seattle. Ted S. Warren / Associated Press