One of my favorite occurrences at the beginning of each year are the predictions that are bandied about; those who are in the know, share with us what we need to know in order to prepare for the coming year.
I recently received an email from Executive Travel with their travel predictions for the year, and many of these are need-to-knows for you, dear Meeting Manager. So let’s take a look:
- Free Wi-Fi! Hyatt, Starwood Hotels and more are jumping on the free wi-fi bandwagon, which has many of us jumping for joy! Just in case you want to know how fit the Wi-Fi is at any given hotel, check out the hotel wifi test site.
- Goodbye $199 Domestic RT, Hello $999 Europe RT: Fuel costs are on the decline, yet domestic airfare remains at higher than comfy pricing. Fares to and from Europe, however, look pretty nice from the gateway cities.
- More reasons to think Europe: The Euro has fallen to its lowest level in 9 years, this will more than likely mean great deals for us.
- International travel consideration: If you go to Europe or travel anywhere internationally, consider spending $100 for a 5-year Global Entry Pass. This will put you in the express lane for immigration when re-entering the US.
- Fly and get work accomplished: Wi-Fi on international flights will now allow Skype calls, meaning you’ll be able to get all kinds of work done. This is good if you feel flights can be a time waster and keep you away from furthering along work projects. This is not-so-good for those that like to have the perfect excuse for reading and napping.
- Show up for car rental and hotel reservations: If you forget to cancel your reservation you may face a non-refundable no-show fee.
- Skip long security check lines: For $85 you can use the express lane for security checks, not a bad investment for the frequent flyer.
- Frequent flyer programs update: One important item to note here is that programs will change from mileage based to dollar based earnings. Also, though your miles should be easier to use, they will cost almost twice as many miles as before and also cost you money. Flights will not be free; you could be charged a fuel surcharge and other fees.
- A missed connection could put you in The Terminal. Okay, if you miss your connection you will not be trapped at the airport for months, but you could be trapped for days. This is due to the fact that most airlines are flying at 90% full. Then again, you could be this guy, he shared a Delta flight with only one other passenger.
- Bundle up! Luggage fees, seat upgrades, priority boarding, Wi-Fi and all those other inventive fees the airlines have come up are now being sold in packages with names like the Ascend Package.
Happy Travels, Meeting Managers! See you in Europe? If you are going to take advantage of those amazing European deals, make sure you seek out amazing site selection services from Your Meeting Matchmaker Fairy Godmother!