Much of the rationale for a managed travel program is providing appropriate and satisfactory service to corporate travelers. That means working with airlines, hotels, ground transport firms, travel management companies, tech providers and others to optimize each step of a trip, from booking and planning through to post-trip reports and surveys.

Coverage areas include:
• Travel agents, both real and virtual
• Employee engagement
Mobile technologies for travelers
• Variability in hotel services
Personalizing travel
Visa processing travel

Ninety-Nine (NDC) Problems And The Tweaks Aren’t Done

Airline officials and other proponents of the New Distribution Capability have described its servicing challenges as “edge cases,” but travel management companies are finding more than that. Limitations on exchanges and unused ticket tracking are the most crucial on growing lists of issues. It’s no wonder that, by most accounts, corporate adoption of American’s NDC…

Looking To Meet An Acute Need, ASTA Creates Corporate Travel Agent Training

The American Society of Travel Advisors this month plans to offer training for those interested in the corporate travel agency environment. ASTA SVP of industry affairs and education Mark Meader called it a “missing component in the industry today.”  Travel management companies do their own training, but the industry needs all the help it can…

Southwest To Take Advantage As American Backs Off, Right? Maybe

Are American and Southwest switching places? No, the low-fare flag bearer isn’t going global, adding business class or assigning seats. But in some critical ways for the corporate market, Southwest is behaving more like its crosstown rival, while that rival is moving in the other direction. As it does for Delta and United, American’s strategy…

Buyers Labor Over How To Inform Travelers About American’s Plans

What should travel managers tell company employees about the distribution changes American Airlines is making?  As one communicator who works in the weeds of airline distribution said, it’s clear as mud. But there’s only so much that travelers need to know. A few travel managers offered some ideas, but for the most part, crafting a…

American Airlines: No Fees For Agent Access To Sales Support Team

American Airlines will not charge fees when travel counselors call sales support for help, a press official confirmed. This was an open question when AA in February described NDC-specific support capabilities it intended to offer travel management companies.  AA does charge $50 to travelers who are not AAdvantage Executive Platinum or ConciergeKey members when they…

At Travel Incorporated, Amgine’s AI Platform Pushes Agent Productivity 

Under pressure to improve efficiency, travel management companies are working to automate responses to travel planning requests from travelers sent by email. Contacts of this type make up a significant portion of incoming requests for many TMCs.  That figure is 60 percent at Atlanta-based Travel Inc., one of 10 TMCs that has installed Amgine’s technology…

American Airlines Builds NDC Service Desk

American Airlines is assembling a special servicing desk to help travel agencies with “NDC bookings,” a spokesperson confirmed. AA’s plan to make upwards of 40 percent of its content non-bookable through legacy indirect distribution has generated apprehension regarding post-booking tasks. How will TMCs deliver sufficient service when new connections between themselves, the airline and global…

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