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Week in Review

GBTA sounded the alarm about the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) funding battle this week. A DHS funding bill failed to pass a procedural vote this week raising concerns that it could result in serious, unintended consequences for business travel, an industry that is expected to account for $310.2 billion in spending during 2015. GBTA called on Congress to work together to fund DHS, which supports the movement of people, goods and services throughout our transportation system. Absent a full year funding bill, business travel can easily be disrupted, causing an immediate impact on our economy. For every one percent decrease in business travel spending, the U.S. economy loses an additional 71,000 jobs, nearly $5 billion in GDP, $3 billion in wages and $1.2 billion in tax collections.

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USA Today reported on the cost to airlines and fliers for cancelled flights in the wake of latest winter storm which saw thousands of flights cancelled. GBTA’s VP of Research Joe Bates talked with Charisse Jones about the significant impact these types of extreme winter weather events can have on corporate travel.

Travel Pulse asked readers why should passengers pay for airport improvements in a piece opposed to an increase in the Passenger Facility Charge (PFC). Forbes tells us that one the bright side, airfares won’t be going up much anytime soon thanks largely to the big drop in crude oil prices over the last seven months.

The Business Journals takes a look at the global business travel market and reports on why China is booming saying, “it’s China’s world now and the rest of us are just traveling in it”.

Back to the airlines, the Chicago Tribune reported on a new study released Monday that offers airlines, an often-hated industry, a simple secret to further their success and pad their bottom lines: Be nice. Skift writes about Jet Blue’s future plans which include bag fees and new types of fares coming in the second quarter. In China, low cost carrier Spring Airlines is issuing a new call for approval for standing seats on planes in hopes of cutting prices on tickets for passengers willing to stand.

Finally, Matt Alderton of Successful Meetings reports on how to negotiate with hotels in a seller’s market. A hotel boom does not have to spell trouble for group travel and meetings, he says.

Check back next week for more of the latest news in business travel. You can also turn to the GBTA blog as a resource on trending issues in the industry.

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