Skift Take

This week in digital, Expedia's senior executive Barry Diller has major changes to juggle going into 2020, starting with finding a new CEO. Meanwhile, in an unexpected turn, the younger generation is more likely to seek aid from travel advisors.

Digital Travel News Weekly Roundup

Throughout the week we post dozens of original stories, connecting the dots across the travel industry, and every weekend we sum it all up. This weekend roundup examines digital trends.

For all of our weekend roundups, go here.

Who Will Be Expedia’s New CEO? Facing intense competition and a company in disarray, the Expedia Group board and senior executive Barry Diller have no time to dillydally. No one can forecast what the online travel market will look like in the next five years, but Diller et al need to find a couple of top executives who can quickly figure out Expedia’s path forward.

The Way Forward for Expedia May Include Selling Off Businesses: The strategy and vision for the next stage in Expedia Group’s life should include sharp departures from the status quo, but rest assured that the company line for the time being will be stability to keep the peace.

Who Loves Travel Advisors the Most? It’s Millennials, Not Boomers: Emerging destinations and changes in travel styles are fueling a need for human interaction in the travel planning process among younger generations. Companies would be wise not to neglect the human element instead of betting the bank on booking and personalization technology alone.

Survey: Millennials Prefer Travel Advisor Expertise When It Comes to Planning: The experiential travel that millennials and other younger people crave may be best provided by professionals, not booking tools.

Puerto Rico Aims to Boost Biz Travel With High-Tech Entertainment District: El Distrito is an ambitious plan, and the island is throwing an extraordinary amount of effort toward making it a success. This is something that matters to business leaders. Hopefully, visitors will have the same enthusiasm.

Qantas, Expedia and Others Eye This Australian Luxury Online Travel Agency: Here’s Why: Luxury Escapes, which is expanding next into the U.S. and China, is drawing not just more affluent travelers but potential investors, with Qantas Airways being tipped to be making an offer.

How Thomas Cook’s European Businesses Are Now Divvied Up Among Rivals: Thomas Cook collected its fair share of brands over the years. Now rivals are picking over what remains of the group.

Zeus Raises $55 Million for Extended-Stay Rentals: Travel Startup Funding This Week: This week, travel startups announced more than $139 million in funding for concepts including extended-stay corporate housing, short-term rental-style pop-up hotels, co-living spaces, and landing ports for flying taxis.

Asian Travelers to Go Slow and Solo in 2020, Online Searches Reveal: Asian tourist behavior is changing, reflecting a more mindful — and responsible — traveler overall.

TUI Looks Set for a Challenging 2020 Even Without Competitor Thomas Cook: TUI continues to have ambitious plans, and its quest to move away from the traditional tour operating market seems sensible given the problems endured by one of its biggest competitors. But good intentions often get derailed by outside circumstances. Can it stay the course in 2020?

Why More Travel Managers Still Aren’t Offering Text Messaging — in 2019: When it comes to tech, most travel management companies have focused on improving the user interface or putting in more automated features. Instant messaging hasn’t been high on the list, but thankfully that’s starting to change.

Travel Managers Still Fall Way Behind on Instant Messaging: Texting is central to most people’s everyday lives, so it’s surprising that most travel agencies are so sluggish to adopt it. At this point, it’s only a matter of time before it becomes a key part of every corporate travel program.

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Tags: digital, Travel Trends, trends roundups

Photo credit: Expedia senior executive is looking for a new CEO for Expedia Group following the resignation of Mark Okerstrom. Kris Krug / Flickr

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