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

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…

American Express Global Business Travel Sets Minimum NDC Requirements

American Express Global Business Travel developed guidance for a “minimum marketable product” using New Distribution Capability-compliant connections with airlines and distribution partners. The MMP has 162 use cases and helps demonstrate the depth of change management underway in airline distribution and retailing.  GBT, which eventually may donate the “living document” to the industry, has shared…

As Navan (Née TripActions) Releases Trojan Horse, Clients Say Branding Isn’t The Problem

During its eight years, TripActions required some administrative work for clients to sign up. They would need contact with a representative and a contract. With its rebranding, that’s gone and non-client travel managers face the prospect of fending off employees who sign up on their own, agree to terms and policies on their company’s behalf,…

TMCs Still Need More People, GBTA Poll Finds

Ninety percent of about 60 travel management company personnel polled in January by GBTA expected their firms to increase staff size in 2023 compared with last year. Forty-six percent said their companies were still smaller than they were before Covid. TMC staffing shortages and resulting service problems are not as widespread as they were several…

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