Ovation's weekly client e-newsletter, the Informed Traveler, keeps readers updated on travel industry news and trends.
Following is a recap of January's Top 5 (most clicked by Ovation clients) e-newsletter stories.
1. Business Travel is Taking a Hit From Partial Government Shutdown
The partial government shutdown has begun hurting business travel, and insiders expect the impact to grow if the impasse continues, reports Skift. According to a poll conducted by the Global Business Travel Association, nearly half of respondents said they had dealt with canceled bookings and concern from travelers about airline delays and cancellations. Airport security delays had hit 45 percent of respondents, while nearly 40 percent reported canceled meetings or business opportunities in the U.S. as well as greater uncertainty about the economy. Two-thirds of respondents said they expect a negative impact if the shutdown stretches past the end of the week. To read more, click here.
2. TSA Screener Call Outs Hit 10 Percent
The percentage of TSA airport screeners missing work hit 10 percent last weekend as the partial government shutdown stretches into its fifth week, reports Travel Weekly. According to the TSA, many security screeners say that financial hardship is preventing them from reporting to work. January 20th's 10% absence rate indicates that more than 3,000 airport screeners missed work, topping the previous high of 8% on January 19th. The TSA says the national average waiting time in airport checkpoint lines is still within the normal limit of 30 minutes, but there are longer lines at some airports. The agency has dispatched extra screeners to airports in Atlanta, LaGuardia Airport in New York and Newark. To read more, click here.
3. Newark to Singapore Tops Longest Non-Stop Flight List
In 2018, airlines from around the world introduced new long-haul routes made possible by the next generation of aircraft and which focus on passenger comfort and health, reports Forbes. Among the longest of these new routes is Newark to Singapore, which tops the list for longest non-stop flights available in 2019 at nearly 19 hours and a distance of over 9,500 miles. Coming in as the second longest flight is Auckland to Doha at just under 18 hours and over 9,032 miles, while Perth to London is the third longest, topping out at 17 hours, 25 minutes and covering 9,009 miles. To read more, click here.
4. American to Offer Free Apple Music Streaming on Flights
American Airlines has announced a partnership with Apple Music that will allow Apple Music subscribers to stream songs, playlists and music videos on any domestic flight equipped with ViaSat satellite Wi-Fi for free, reports CNBC. The agreement makes American the first commercial airline to provide exclusive access to Apple Music through complimentary Wi-Fi. Those who subscribe to Apple Music will be able to access the service on Apple devices equipped with the platform, including iPhones, iPads, Macs and Android phones. Those who don't have a subscription can sign up for a free three-month trial once on board. The new deal begins Friday, February 1st. To read more, click here.
5. Amtrak Improves Service on Northeast Corridor; Seeks Fund for Larger Infrastructure Project
Amtrak is spending billions of dollars on new stations and faster tracks along the Northeast U.S. corridor, the nation's busiest train route, reports Skift. Roughly $3.4 billion in improvements are underway to bring faster, more reliable service to the Northeast corridor, yet the region's biggest and most important infrastructure project remains unfunded. Amtrak needs at least $37 billion for improvements from New York to Washington, D.C., with the bulk of it being used to replace a bridge, build a second tunnel linking New Jersey to Manhattan and overhaul an older, existing tunnel. To read more, click here.