Direct Travel News Brief Header
May 30, 2023

In This Edition… flight service updates, two airlines launch improved onboard WIFI, more in REAL ID, facial recognition for TSA, visa wait times improve, updates on ride share service options, Millennium launches M Social, Hilton extended stay brand, Apple’s digital ID, traveler tips, and much more

Dans cette édition... des mises à jour sur les services de vol, deux compagnies aériennes lancent un service Wi-Fi amélioré à bord, plus d’informations sur REAL ID, la reconnaissance faciale pour la TSA, l’amélioration des temps d’attente pour les visas, des mises à jour sur les options de service de covoiturage, Millennium lance M Social, la marque de séjour prolongé du Hilton, l’identification numérique d’Apple, des conseils aux voyageurs, et bien plus encore!

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Tips for Going Green With Your Business Travel

Efforts to prioritize sustainability have continued to grow as a focus for most businesses, particularly as it relates to employee travel and reducing carbon emissions. Read More

5 Reasons to Make the Move to a Managed Travel Program

For small to mid-sized companies that have struggled with implementing consistent travel policies and processes, the continually shifting post-COVID landscape has further shown the importance of transitioning to a managed corporate travel program. Read More


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United Expands in Denver with 35 More Flights, Six More Routes, 12 More Gates

Insider Travel Report — United announced plans to significantly grow its position as Denver's leading airline, adding 35 flights, six new routes, a dozen new gates and three clubs, including the largest ones in the carrier's network. Read More

Air Canada, Flydubai Reach Codeshare, Interline Deal

Business Travel News — Air Canada and Flydubai have partnered to form a codeshare and interline agreement, pending regulatory approval. Read More

Icelandair Launches Nonstop Detroit Service

Business Travel News — Icelandair launched nonstop seasonal service between Reykjavik and Detroit. Read More

Delta Air Lines Launching Innovative New Digital Platform for Onboard Wi-Fi

Travel Pulse — Delta Air Lines is about to integrate a new, first-of-its-kind platform on flights equipped with fast, free in-flight Wi-Fi, enhancing onboard internet connectivity and elevating the customer experience. Read More

Emirates Extends Free Inflight Wi-Fi to Loyalty Members

Business Travel News — Emirates has become the latest airline to extend its inflight Wi-Fi capabilities, joining the likes of Singapore Airlines, Delta and Etihad in offering free internet access and inflight messaging to passengers. Read More

Delta Reduces Late-Summer NYC Flights, Following Other Carriers

The Points Guy — After American and United trimmed their summer schedules, Delta will cut more than 6 percent of its flights to and from New York City-area airports in August in response to a shortage of air traffic controller. Read More

The New Longest Flight in the World Is 20 Hours

Afar Magazine — The route, which will connect Sydney to London, is expected to launch in 2025. Read More

Air Canada to Launch New Vancouver-Dubai Service

Recommend — The new route will operate four times weekly beginning Oct. 28, 2023 onboard Air Canada’s flagship Dreamliner fleet. Read More

New Study Reveals US Cities With the Highest Airfare Increases

Travel Pulse — A new study by CheapAir shows that, while no American city has been spared from continued inflation of airline ticket costs, the smallest among them are suffering the most. Read More

Domestic Airfare Prices Down, International Flights Up Ahead of Summer Travel Season

Travel Pulse — Now is a good time to take to the skies for a U.S. flight. Read More

Transatlantic Flights Approaching Pre-Pandemic Levels

Business Traveler — More than 15,000 transatlantic flights are scheduled to depart Europe for the United States in May, just 240 fewer than the same month in 2019. Read More

Which Airlines Have The Highest Levels of Customer Satisfaction?

SI LIVE — How satisfied you are with your chosen airline may depend on which class you are sitting in. Read More

U.K. Aims to Work More Closely with U.S. on SAF

Business Travel News — The U.K. is vowing to work more closely with the U.S. on the development of sustainable aviation fuel as the countries host a summit on investment in producing more of the biofuel. Read More

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REAL ID Is Coming: Here’s What Travelers Need to Know

Travel Market Report — It’s been a long time coming, but the REAL ID deadline is approaching, whether travelers like it or not. Read More

TSA Using Facial Recognition Technology to Speed Up Airport Wait Times

Travel Pulse — The technology tests have been largely positive, with few instances of bias found. Read More

Visa Wait Times Improving, But Not Enough

Prevue Meetings — Although wait times for applicants in India dropped from 669 days in mid-March to 337 days in early April, that's far from good enough. Read More

Government Travel Warnings & Alerts

U.S. Department of State — Information on current government issued travel warnings and alerts. Read More

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Uber to Launch Group Rides

Business Travel News — Ride-hailing provider Uber will launch a new feature enabling group trips. Read More

Lyft Launches New Feature for Airport Pre-Orders

Travel Market Report — The new feature will help travelers avoid waiting at passenger pickup areas. Read More

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Millennium Hotels Launches M Social in Suzhou

Business Traveller — The bold and stylish brand, M Social is heralding its maiden foray in China with the opening of M Social Suzhou on 26 April. Read More

Hilton to Launch Lower-Midscale U.S. Ext.-Stay Brand

Business Travel News — Hilton Worldwide plans to launch next year a new extended-stay brand in the U.S. in the lower midscale sector, the company announced Tuesday. The brand, using the working title Project H3, will cater to the "vastly underserved group looking for apartment-style accommodations for 20 nights or more." Read More

Choice Hotels EMEA Signs Strategic Partnership Deal with Borealis Hotel Group

Insider Travel Report — Choice Hotels EMEA, the 100 percent franchise-focused hotel company, and Borealis Hotel Group, a European hospitality company, have signed a strategic partnership agreement to expand their European portfolios. Read More

New Accommodations Coming to Las Vegas

Recommend — Caesars Entertainment has announced plans to renovate the Jubilee Tower at Horseshoe Las Vegas and integrate it into Paris Las Vegas with a new name, Versailles Tower. Read More

The Four Seasons Hotel Boston Officially Reopens

Travel Market Report — The hotel has been closed for renovations since the beginning of January. Read More

Choice Hotels Reportedly Interested in Acquiring Wyndham

Travel Pulse — A new report suggests that Choice Hotels International, Inc. has expressed interest in acquiring Wyndham Hotels & Resorts, Inc. Read More

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Apple’s New TSA-Approved ID Has Launched—and Is Coming to an Airport Near You

Afar Magazine — No more rummaging through your belongings to dig out your ID. Read More

Summer Travel Likely to Involve Sold-Out Food and Full Lounges

The Points Guy — Be prepared to navigate understaffed airport restaurants and overbooked airline clubs as summer travel kicks into high gear. Read More

Minimum Connection Times: What Are They & Why Are They Important?

Simple Flying — A few tips and tricks on how to navigate a tight connection. Read More

US Airports Renovate, Expand to Improve Traveler Satisfaction

Travel Pulse — Facilities around the country are taking advantage of a bipartisan infrastructure bill. Read More

Biden Admin Proposes Compensation for Delayed, Stranded Air Travelers

Recommend — Airlines have long offered compensation to air travelers who are delayed or stranded, but the system has been largely voluntary. Now, the Biden administration is proposing to establish mandatory rules—a plan already being opposed by the airline industry. Read More

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Speaker Diversity: The Meetings Industry Still Falls Short

Prevue Meetings — There are signs that our industry associations are focusing more on speaker diversity than used to be the case—but we still have a long way to go. Read More

Why Outdoor Events in California Are 'In'

Northstar Meetings Group — Flexibility, fresh ocean air and fantastic options — being outside definitely is in. With near-perfect weather year-round, San Diego in particular features a wealth of event venues overlooking beaches, bays and gorgeous landscapes dotted with palm trees. Read More

Looking for guidance on planning your next convention, incentive, or group trip? Direct Travel will assist with all your meetings and event details!  Whatever your needs may be when it comes to your event, you can always depend on us to design streamlined travel arrangements, plan strategic meetings, and deliver real-time results. For details, please send a message to: