BTN’s High 10 Tales of 2021


2021 was a yr of fixed recalibration within the turbulent floor of the pandemic, with the incessant back-and-forth of the Covid-19 virus’ unfold and variants upending everyone’s plans and forecasts. Nonetheless, if previous is prologue, a evaluate of the enterprise journey business’s prime tales of 2021, as measured by the variety of distinctive readers for every report, can solely assist put together for 2022, a yr beginning off steeped in uncertainty and concern.

1. Enterprise Vacationers Dealing with a Potential Rental Automotive Scarcity (Feb. 26)

BTN’s most-read report of 2021 was a warning to journey managers and vacationers {that a} semiconductor scarcity might have an effect on the provision of automobiles accessible for rental later within the yr. This proved prescient, though the explanations for the restricted provide have developed, as provide chain difficulties plagued many sectors within the latter half of the yr. Vacationers’ satisfaction with the sector has declined consequently. 

2. Enterprise Journey Has Peaked. This is Our Future (Jan. 22)

Scott Gillespie, founding father of the tClara information consultancy, at first of 2021 wrote an op-ed for BTN that declared “our business won’t ever return to its pre-Covid degree” and that “we’re coming into a brand new paradigm, one grounded by questioning the necessity for journey.” Practically 12 months later, the jury stays out, however Gillespie’s prediction hasn’t been confirmed incorrect, both. Gillespie later in 2021 urged permitting business-class journey for everybody to restrict lower-value journeys. 

3. American Specific GBT Agrees to Purchase Egencia (Might 4)

Arguably the enterprise journey business’s greatest deal was American Specific International Enterprise Journey’s acquisition of Egencia from Expedia. After the deal was finalized in December, Amex GBT introduced it could go public by a merger with a particular function acquisition firm. The offers weren’t Amex GBT’s solely M&A strikes of 2021, because the journey administration firm introduced the acquisition of Ovation Journey Group in 2021. The strikes heralded a spate of TMC consolidation throughout the yr. 

RELATED: Who Purchased Whom in 2021

4. After Brexit, Main Restrictions Hit EU-U.Ok. Enterprise Journey (Dec. 31, 2020)

Fudging the foundations a bit to incorporate a report posted within the ultimate hours of 2020, BTN famous the post-Brexit commerce settlement between the UK and European Union held important implications for enterprise journey. Maybe most notably, work permits could be required for some short-term enterprise vacationers, elevating the extent of consideration and paperwork required for even fast journey. A subsequent report detailed the tumult, mitigated to some extent by restricted pandemic-era enterprise journey demand

5. U.Ok. Says It Will Ease Quarantine for U.S., Different Arrivals (June 25)

The federal government-mandated quarantines and limits on worldwide journey annoyed many corners of the business at instances of 2021, notably after Covid-19 vaccines turned broadly accessible within the spring. Whereas airways explored testing protocols to keep away from quarantines and touted research that vouched for the protection of air journey, it nonetheless took the UK till late summer season to permit totally vaccinated U.S. residents to go to with out quarantine. It might take a bit longer for the U.S. to do likewise. 

6. U.S. Commerce Secretary Calls Corp. Journey Restart ‘High Precedence,’ Particulars Few (June 23)

U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo in June throughout an American Lodge & Lodging Affiliation webinar stated restarting enterprise and worldwide the Biden administration’s “prime precedence.” However one month later, the administration indicated it could preserve such restrictions. Solely in November would the U.S. start to permit totally vaccinated guests from the U.Ok., Europe and elsewhere the power to enter with out quarantine.

7. GBTA Seems to be to 2025 for Enterprise Journey Restoration (Feb. 3)

Few actions are as fraught with uncertainty as forecasting future enterprise journey demand amid the pandemic. The challenges of returning to workplaces in colleges as new variants emerge considerably complicate any efforts to mission the long run, as do the evolving notion of the office and altering attitudes towards distant conferencing. The International Enterprise Journey Affiliation urged 2025 might signify one thing of a full return to normalcy, at the least when it comes to enterprise journey quantity. 

8. U.S. Tightens Worldwide Journey Protocols, Extends Masks Mandate (Dec. 2)

The omicron variant of Covid-19 emerged in late November and has proved the most important story within the enterprise journey business since. The very transmissible variant has wreaked havoc on flight schedules, closed some colleges and workplaces and prompted some firms to rethink journey plans. Proof factors to presumably milder infections resulting from omicron, providing the business one thing of a silver lining. 

9. Company Journey Prepares for Put up-Vaccine Realities (April 8)

The rollout of the Covid-19 vaccines proved a turning level within the pandemic’s position in journey, with leisure journey spiking and enterprise journey simply starting to get better. However vaccine refusal and hesitancy remained in a minority of the inhabitants, and a few patrons started to contemplate the likelihood that they may prohibit enterprise journey to the vaccinated. Later within the yr, this proved to be the case.

10. Firms Pumping the Brakes on Return to Journey (Aug. 26)

Earlier than the omicron variant of Covid-19, there was the delta variant, a notably deadly mutation that challenged the nascent restoration of enterprise journey because it expanded worldwide within the late summer season. It’s but unclear how omicron will have an effect on delta, however some scientists have pointed to the likelihood that the latter could possibly be outcompeted by its milder cousin.

Bonus! 11. Robust Demand for Assembly Area Might Set off 2022 ‘Compression’ (July 13)

The pre-delta pleasure over the potential of in-person occasions that coursed by some companies within the early summer season led to hypothesis concerning the conferences shopping for setting in 2022 and past. With a lot pent-up demand and plenty of patrons focusing on the latter half of this yr, suppliers might have a measure of pricing energy they have not seen since earlier than the pandemic. 

RELATED: BTN’s 25 Most Influential of 2021

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