Home > > Corporate travel to take a $560B hit; searches for flights up 138% | Daily Brief

Corporate travel to take a $560B hit; searches for flights up 138% | Daily Brief

03/02/2020| 4:49:38 PM| ChinaTravelNews

China allocated USD 814 million to support project construction in the cultural tourism industry; Singapore Airlines is cutting pay for management staff.

Shiji, Oracle to end major contract

>> Hospitality and retail tech stack provider Shiji announced that its major contract with Oracle Hospitality will end on May 31 this year, and the two companies will not further extend their partnership. 

All sales of Oracle Hotel and Food & Beverage software, hardware and Cloud Services in China shall occur through Hangzhou GreenCloud Software or Ai Wei Information Technology, effective June 1, 2020, according to Oracle's statement.

Virus threatens to take $560B from corporate travel

>> An industry group said the coronavirus could cut USD 560 billion from spending on corporate travel this year, a 37% drop from its 2020 global expenditure forecast, as meetings and events are canceled and companies limit travel to protect employees.

The Global Business Travel Association said two-thirds of polled members had postponed at least a few events, while 95% had suspended or canceled most or all trips to China and 23% to European countries such as France, Germany and Italy.

Coronavirus puts 100,000 tourism jobs at risk

>> The impact of coronavirus will cost Australia's tourism industry AUD 4 billion and up to 133,200 jobs, new data shows. The outbreak will mean 1.8 million fewer tourists on the shores between January and June, with the monthly hit to the industry around AUD 2 billion, modeling from the country's Tourism and Transport Forum (TTF) reveals.

EU tourism loses €1B in January

>> The European tourism sector has missed 2 million travelers due to the spread of coronavirus, which means a loss of EUR 1 billion per month, according to Thierry Breton, European Commissioner for Internal Market. 

Searches for holiday flights up 138%

>> Online travel agency Tongcheng-Elong said there’s a growing belief that the coronavirus outbreak is being better contained in China because the number of searches for flights on its online platform is soaring.

Searches for bookings during the April 4-6 Tomb Sweeping Holiday, or Qing Ming Festival, jumped 138% on Feb 23 from a week earlier, while those for flights in the Labor Day break from May 1 to 5 increased 84%, the Hong Kong-listed company said.

China invests $800M in virus-hit tourism projects

>> China's top economic planner has allocated RMB 5.7 billion (USD 814 million) to support project construction in the cultural tourism industry that has taken a hard hit by the novel coronavirus outbreak. The investment will be used on 485 projects including protection facilities of national cultural and natural heritage and tourism infrastructure, according to the National Development and Reform Commission.

China takes charge of HNA, paving way for asset sales

>> China began assuming control of debt-laden HNA Group, paving the way for a hastened selloff of the once-sprawling conglomerate’s remaining assets. The rescue of the fallen giant, once the top shareholder of Hilton Worldwide and Deutsche Bank, will probably soothe investor concerns about the group’s ability to repay debts of about $75 billion. 

Ingram Micro's CEO Alain Monié reassured partners that its indebtedness of parent company HNA Group, and a threat that it could be nationalized by China, will not spill over to the IT distributor.

AirAsia X offers a year's unlimited flights for $181

>> AirAsia X is offering unlimited international flights for a year for just 499 ringgit (AUD 181) as the coronavirus hits passenger numbers. Passengers will be able to fly from the airline's home base in Malaysia to Australia, Japan, China, India and South Korea as many times as they like.

Singapore Airlines chief, senior staff cut pay 

>> Singapore Airlines (SIA) is cutting pay for management staff as the global coronavirus outbreak continues to hit demand for air travel. From March 1, CEO Goh Choon Phong's pay will be cut by 15%. The two executive vice-presidents will take a 12% cut, and senior vice-presidents a 10% cut, The Straits Times found out. Other affected staff will take a 5%-7% cut.

Cathay Pacific parks 1/2 fleet, slashes 3/4 flights

>> Hong Kong’s flagship airline Cathay Pacific has 120 planes sitting on the tarmac at any given time, accounting for about half of its fleet, and has scrapped more than three-quarters of its weekly flights in March. Last week, Cathay said 75% of staff, or 25,000 employees of the group, would take unpaid leave.

Emirates tells cabin crew, staff to take vacation

>> Emirates airlines is encouraging tens of thousands of employees, including its pilots and cabin crew, to go on vacation without pay amid a rising number of flight cancellations and travel warnings due to the coronavirus scare.

The UAE-based carrier, which employs more than 103,000 workers worldwide, is one of the dozens of airlines that have temporarily cancelled services to and from several destinations, including China and Iran, to help contain the spread of the virus.

Global cruise association issues guidelines 

>> Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), which represents more than 90% of ocean-going cruise capacity worldwide and includes nearly every major cruise line, issued new guidance regarding how cruise lines should respond to the coronavirus.

CLIA Members are to deny boarding to all persons who have traveled from, visited or transited via airports in South Korea and China, including Hong Kong and Macao, within 14 days before embarkation.

MICE industry to hit $1.4B in five years

>> The global meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibition (MICE) industry is expected to reach over USD 1.4 billion in the next five years, with the Middle East region at the forefront, according to ITL World Company.

OYO to Donald Trump: "We expect to invest another $2B" in US

>> OYO founder Ritesh Agarwal grabbed an opportunity to tell US President Donald Trump that the budget hotel chain will spend another USD 2 billion in the United States over a couple of years ahead, in addition to the company's previous investments of USD 300 million in the country, according to the transcript released by the White House.

Mr. Agarwal spoke to Mr. Trump during a business roundtable on the latter's visit to India last week. He said OYO Hotels as a young startup entered the US market in less than a year ago and had opened one hotel per day in the US during the last eight months. OYO now manages more than 330 hotels in the country.

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