Skift Take

Good morning from Skift. It's Thursday, April 21, in New York City. Here's what you need to know about the business of travel today.

Series: Skift Daily Briefing

Skift Daily Briefing Podcast

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Today’s edition of Skift’s daily podcast looks at why travel agents are planning trips for 2024, how travel planners are struggling with an overload of carbon-related information, and why a new Icelandic airline is optimistic.

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Episode Notes

Travelers unable to hit the road during the height of the pandemic are making plans to do so in record numbers this year, but they’re not just preparing for 2022 or even 2023 trips. Editorial Assistant Rashaad Jorden reports travel agents are booking trips for 2024 as consumers concerned about inflation are looking to finalize travel plans before their planned trips become more expensive.

Sarah Kline, the president of Maryland-based agency Time For Travel, is telling customers to immediately book any trips they have planned for the end of 2023 or 2024. Why is she giving her clients that bit of advice? Kline has seen the prices of 2024 trips quickly increase just prior to customers being ready to book.

Joshua Bush, the CEO of Pennsylvania-based Avenue Two Travel, believes the concerns that consumers have about inflation are justified. He said, as a result of the war in Ukraine causing oil prices to surge, cruise lines and airlines will place fuel surcharges on base fares.

Next, as corporations are becoming increasingly vocal about their efforts to hit sustainability goals, they are looking to obtain crucial carbon emissions data. But company travel managers are frustrated about what they consider an overabundance of sources for critical pieces of information, reports Corporate Travel Editor Matthew Parsons.

Corporate travel agencies such as CWT have decided to display carbon emissions data at the point of booking, which Parsons writes is a tactic that can encourage greener travel options. But as methods for calculating carbon data vary among companies, Parsons adds that pieces of information that are useful for one corporation might not be for others.

Sabah Kahoul, a former Microsoft travel manager and current vice president of the Association of Swiss Travel Management, believes travel managers have a responsibility to organize carbon emissions data. Kahoul said if there are no standards for obtaining such data, the information won’t be useful for companies looking to reduce their carbon footprint.

We end today with a look at Icelandic startup airline Play. Despite facing challenges such as inflation and surging fuel prices, CEO Birgir Jónsson is bullish about making inroads in the United States as it launches transatlantic flights, writes Airlines Reporter Edward Russell.

Although Play faces an uphill climb as Russell writes no long-haul, low-cost carrier has ever had success with transatlantic flights, Jónsson is confident his airline will thrive in a competitive marketplace. He said that all three of Play’s initial U.S. destinations — Baltimore-Washington, Boston and New York Stewart International — are meeting expectations. In addition, the carrier will launch service to Orlando, a decision Play made because the city’s airport is connected by rail to destinations such as Miami and Fort Lauderdale.

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Tags: business travel, climate change, Play Airlines, skift podcast

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