June 14, 2017 View in browser

Note From the Editor

Score one for the complainers this week: After American Airlines got an earful (or several) about plans to shrink seat pitch, the carrier changed course. We won't get used to this kind of response from airlines, but it's refreshing when one takes notice of something that travelers really hate.

Hotel CEOs, who have historically brushed off the threat of Airbnb, are talking more — to Skift, of course — about their views on the homesharing competitor. Not surprisingly, the consensus seems to be that alternative accommodations should play by the same rules as traditional hotels. Will a more vocal stance, backed by an industry group, lead to change?
Top Stories
New Research Report: A Deep Dive Into TripAdvisor’s Competitive Position in Travel 2017
TripAdvisor has potential to become more than a hotel booking engine, but it needs to get hotels humming and profitable to give management additional runway to fulfill that vision.

American Airlines Reverses Plan to Shrink Legroom on Some Planes
In today's airline landscape, legacy carriers generally offer between 30 and 32 inches of seat pitch. Discount airlines give customers 28 or 29 inches. American Airlines had planned to shrink some seats to 29 inches, but customers complained. The plan is off. That's good news.

TripAdvisor Returns to TV Advertising With Bathrobe-Clad Owl as Spokesperson
TripAdvisor's new ad campaign comes at a momentous time for the company, although TripAdvisor views it as part of a long-term TV advertising enterprise. With $70 million behind it and an empathetic bent it will probably do well. You can expect Trivago to up its game as well.

Most Hotel CEOs Dismiss Airbnb’s Impact But Demand Level Playing Field
Most CEOs said the same thing they’ve said about Airbnb countless times before — ‘We need a level playing field’ — but there are signs that some are starting to take the $31 billion alternative accommodations provider a bit more seriously.

Why Scandinavia’s SAS Is Creating a New Airline With the Same Name in Ireland
To the average flyer this makes little sense. Why would a Swedish airline build a new airline with the same name in Ireland? But many consumers expect to pay 30 or 35 Euros to fly from Copenhagen to London. If an airline is going to offer those prices, it needs to control costs.

WTTC Says Trump Should Make Tourism Job Growth a Priority
U.S. tourism job growth is already projected to be smaller than the rest of the world without the full impact of some of the Trump administration's policies. The travel industry is asking for a seat at the table to convince Washington why that means bad news.

A Scenario-Based Guide to Hotels for Business Travel in Hong Kong
A quick, no-nonsense guide to where to stay for business trips in one of the world's most spectacular cities: Hong Kong.
New Luxury Stories
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Upscale Hotel Brands Are Forgoing FitTech to Focus on Holistic Wellness
Hotel brands are developing more all-encompassing wellness retreats and partnering with trendy health brands in an attempt to deliver transformative travel experiences.

How to Tell the Difference Between Luxury and Affluent Travelers
The quick takeaway: Not all wealthy U.S. travelers travel the same way.

California Tourism Leaders Get Lessons on the Road From High-End Brands
California is in a unique position because it both has a product every traveler is after and it knows how to speak luxury from the start. Trips like these are just icing on the cake.
Still Popular
A Passenger Wish List When Designing an Airline From Scratch
What would the Casper or Warby Parker of the aviation world look like? We take a stab at outlining the characteristics.

Interview: Copa Airlines CEO on Building the ‘Hub of the Americas’ in Panama
Panama's Copa Airlines is not well-known in most of North America, but it's among the most profitable airlines in the Americas. Its secret? Like Southwest Airlines, it keeps its model simple.

Travel Tech CEO Series: Farelogix Tries to Profit From Airline Distribution Turmoil
Lufthansa Group and IAG (the parent of British Airways) are striving to shake up airline distribution. One of the tech providers that they've hired to do this is Farelogix, whose boss, Jim Davidson, has a provocative vision of the future that's running into commercial resistance.
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