Direct Travel News Brief - June 20, 2017

TRAVEL MANAGEMENT NEWS

PLEASE BE AWARE    Marriott Cancels Its 24-hour Cancellation Policy   CNN

The world's largest hotel chain announced on Thursday that customers must give at least 48-hours notice if they plan to cancel a reservation -- or cough up a fee equivalent to one night's stay.

An SME Travel Policy That Has Teeth    Business Travel News

Want a travel policy that has some power behind it? Keep it simple…

AIRLINE/FLIGHT UPDATES

Alitalia Files for Bankruptcy in U.S.    Business Travel News

Alitalia has filed for Chapter 15 bankruptcy protection in the U.S. to prevent its services from being cut off at New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport.

American Reverses Plan to Cut an Inch of Legroom – in Three Rows    CNN

American Airlines has nixed its plans to cut legroom in three rows on its new Boeing 737 Max jets.

Virgin Atlantic Offering Free Gold and Silver Status Match     The Points Guy

Virgin Atlantic Flying Club is offering frequent flyers of other programs the chance to give its elite status a try.

American Airlines to Splash Out on LAX Upgrades     Travel Mole

Carrier will commit USD1.6 billion to 10-year upgrade plan in Los Angeles

United Airlines Suspends Flights to Venezuela Starting July 1     Chicago Tribune

United Airlines Inc. will suspend flights to Venezuela next month, a move that further cuts off access to the Latin American nation engulfed in violent political protests and economic chaos.

Delta, American to Continue Flights to Venezuela, For Now  Fox Business

While some major U.S. airlines have shut down routes to Venezuela amid the severe economic crisis and political turmoil gripping the South American country, Delta Airlines and American Airlines said they will continue to offer flights there – for now.

Understanding the Qatar Ban and Its Implications for Qatar Airways    The Dilla Press

The Qatar diplomatic ban is a nightmare for Qatar airways. Its routings and market share will undoubtedly suffer in the near and medium term.

SAFETY & SECURITY

TSA and American Test New Screening Technology     Travel Pulse

The airline and TSA are collaborating at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport.

The Five Pillars of Travel Risk Management     4Hoteliers

A sound travel risk management program would have an all-encompassing duty of care strategy and crisis management process to identify the business travelers involved in situations and protect them from harm.

Delta, TSA Test Fingerprints as Boarding Passes    Travel Skills

TSA is testing fingerprint ID verification for PreCheck members at Denver and Atlanta.

Airport Security Lines May Get Longer Ahead of the Summer Season as TSA Tests Tighter Security     CNBC

A new policy change being weighed could make airport checkpoint security a bit longer – and may result in unhappier passengers.

U.S. Might Expand Laptop Ban to 71 Airports     CNBC

The U.S. might expand a ban on larger electronics like laptops in cabins to flights originating from dozens of airports in Europe, the Middle East and Africa...

U.S. Travelers See Airport Security Improvements     Travel Market Report

United States airport security has seemingly improved for travelers, as satisfaction with wait times and screening measures is gaining.

Packing These Items Will Slow Down Your Summer Travel, TSA Warns     WTVR-TV (Richmond, Va.)

Transportation Security Administration spokesperson Lisa Farbstein offers packing advice to help travelers sail through security screening, starting with the 3-1-1 rule for liquids: "It's 3.4 ounces, one quart-sized bag, one bag per person," she said.

State Department Issues Travel Alert for Typhoon, Hurricane Season     Condé Nast Traveler

Last week, the U.S. State Department issued its 2017 hurricane and typhoon season travel alert, including a number of forecasts and warnings for the months ahead.

Government Travel Warnings & Alerts    U.S. Department of State

Click here for information on current government issued travel warnings and alerts.

TRAVELER TIPS, TRIPS & CONVENIENCE

11 Tools You Should Always Carry in Your Car    USA Today

Be prepared! With just a few items you can handle car emergencies like a pro.

President Trump Rolls Back Cuba Detente but Keeps Cruise And Air Travel Open     Travel Market Report

Though the news will limit travel, there will be exceptions for some air and sea travel to Cuba

Hotel Rooms May Soon Come Equipped With Digital Assistants    The Points Guys

For voice-activated virtual assistants like Apple’s Siri and Amazon’s Alexa, hotels are the next frontier.

Frankfurt Airport Opens “Quiet Room”    Frankfurt Airport

In these days of being constantly available thanks to modern technology, many people long for a place to take refuge from the hustle and bustle of everyday life and turn inward. And now Frankfurt Airport has added a Quiet Room where travelers can do exactly that.

What to Do When the Airline Needs Your Seat     Las Vegas Sun

The truth is passengers do not have a lot of recourse when an airline decides to give someone else the seat they’ve already paid for.

GROUND TRANSPORTATION

Enterprise Named Most Trusted Car Rental Brand in Canada     Auto Rental News

The Gustavson Brand Trust Index (GBTI), which measures Canadian consumers’ options about 294 corporate and product brands, has named the winners for 2017.

Self-Driving Buses Are on the Way in China     Travel Pulse

Like a public transit Transformer.

Jaguar Land Rover Invests $25M in Lyft     Buying Business Travel

Jaguar Land Rover has invested $25 million in Uber rival Lyft. The British car manufacturer will support Lyft’s expansion and technology plans and provide it the opportunity to develop and test autonomous vehicles.

Car Rental Companies Get More Connected    USA Today

Car rental companies adapt their vehicles for a more connected world.

HOTEL NEWS

Marriott Announces Stricter Cancellation Policy     Travel Market Report

The world's biggest hotel company is cracking down on last-minute cancellations.

A Look at the First Tru by Hilton in Oklahoma City     USA Today

Tru by Hilton is the first mid-scale hotel brand built from the ground up in Oklahoma City.

Hotels Are Shrinking Rooms, Adding Common Areas     Quartz

Hospitality giants like Marriott and Hilton are ditching in-room amenities in favor of communal areas in hopes of attracting younger travelers...

Wyndham, Caesars Forge Loyalty-Program Partnership     Successful Meetings

Members of Wyndham's Wyndham Rewards program and Caesars' Total Rewards program can now retain their status across both companies...

Marriott to Merge Guest Loyalty Programs in 2018      Frequent Business Traveler

Marriott Hotels & Resorts announced it plans to combine its two guest loyalty programs, Marriott Rewards and Starwood Preferred Guest, in late 2018.

Redesigned Marquette Hotel is Now Part of the Curio Collection by Hilton    Minneapolis Star Tribune

The 282-room downtown Minneapolis Marquette Hotel is now the Curio Collection by Hilton's first upscale hotel in Minnesota following $25 million in renovations.

Wyndham Launching New Independent Soft Brand Collection     Travel Mole

Trademark Hotel Collection will focus on three and four star properties.

Airbnb Introduces New Tool for Business Travelers     Travel Pulse

New search filter shows business travel-ready listings.

Marriott Expands Portfolio In Asia-Pacific, Debuts Two Brands    Travel Market Report

Marriott International is on track to open 80 hotels, as well as debuting two brands, in the Asia-Pacific region in the remaining half of 2017.

New Milwaukee Hotel Is Wisconsin's First Westin    Successful Meetings

Brew City just welcomed a new member to its hotel family: The Westin Milwaukee, which is Wisconsin's first Westin hotel.

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