TRAVEL TECHNOLOGY, DESTINATION AND TOURISM
AMERICAN EXPRESS | October 20, 2022
American Express® (NYSE: AXP) and Cvent® (Nasdaq: CVT), a market-leading meetings, events, and hospitality technology provider, introduced enhanced features to the Cvent Event Marketing & Management platform that further expand virtual payment capabilities, leveraging American Express’ integrated budget management and payment automation solutions.The enhanced features provide a seamless meetings & events (M&E) payment experience for American Express Corporate Meeting Card and vPayment clients using the Cvent Event Marketing & Management platform, by:
Streamlining onboarding and improving the user experience, including a step-by-step escalation process to provide additional support
Simplifying M&E expense allocation with American Express @ Work Reconciliation®, a free 24/7 tool that eases the invoicing process
Increasing virtual funding account options with vPayment, an American Express® payment solution that assigns a single-use account number to each transaction to help increase billing efficiency, expected to be available in the US and UK late 2022
Incorporating an automated reconciliation process, providing users with greater budget visibility, more audit controls, and better data consistency, expected to be available early in 2023
“As large companies increasingly look to bring people back together for client events or internal gatherings, they want more simplification, efficiency and automation, and managing their budgets has become more important, That’s why we partnered with Cvent to deliver an enhanced virtual payment and automation solution that helps provide a seamless user experience and better serves our clients’ needs.”
-Dean Henry, Executive Vice President, Global Business Financing, Payments & Digital Experiences at American Express
According to the new American Express Meeting & Events Trendex1, 97% of corporate event planners believe company events and meetings are equally or more important compared to pre-pandemic, with about three-fourths (74%) saying they expect their 2023 meetings and events budget to increase. While over eight in ten (81%) planners are already using an automated payment process, 82% say they plan to further automate their payment processes within the next six months.
Looking deeper into the main attributes corporate event planners are looking for in a spend management software platform, the top five are:
Simple user experience (50%)
Enhanced security (48%)
One integrated meeting & expense budget platform (39%)
Greater budget visibility (37%)
Automated end-to-end reconciliation (37%)
Since 2018, American Express and Cvent’s virtual payments integration has allowed event managers to pay suppliers and manage meetings and events budgets with American Express virtual account numbers via the Cvent Event Marketing & Management platform. These new American Express and Cvent enhancements aim to address growing needs as companies continue to reimagine what returning to the office, M&E planning, and business travel look like.
“Capturing actual meetings and events spend has long been an organizational pain-point with cumbersome invoices, manual spreadsheets, and siloed processes – which ultimately leads to decreased visibility and reduced budget control, For over two decades, Cvent has helped thousands of companies gain greater control over these expenditures, and with our American Express® payment enhancements, organizations can streamline their payment and reconciliation processes to deliver greater visibility and insights into their total meeting and event spend. In today’s environment, controlling costs is essential for event programs to maximize ROI and prove their value to the organization.”
-Anil Punyapu, Cvent Senior Vice President of Sales
1The Morning Consult poll was conducted between September 1-September 5, 2022 among a sample of 305 Corporate Meeting Planners & Event Organizers employed full time or part time, with one of their main responsibilities including organizing/planning/marketing events. The interviews were conducted online. Results from the full survey have a margin of error of plus or minus 6 percentage points.
ABOUT AMERICAN EXPRESS
American Express is a globally integrated payments company, providing customers with access to products, insights and experiences that enrich lives and build business success. Learn more at americanexpress.com and connect with us on facebook.com/americanexpress, instagram.com/americanexpress, linkedin.com/company/american-express, twitter.com/americanexpress, and youtube.com/americanexpress. Key links to products, services and corporate responsibility information: personal cards, business cards, travel services, gift cards, prepaid cards, merchant services, Accertify, Kabbage, Resy, corporate card, business travel, diversity and inclusion, corporate responsibility and Environmental, Social, and Governance reports.
Cvent Holding Corp. (Nasdaq: CVT), is a leading meetings, events, and hospitality technology provider with more than 4,700 employees and approximately 21,000 customers worldwide. Founded in 1999, the company delivers a comprehensive event marketing and management platform and offers a global marketplace where event professionals collaborate with venues to create engaging, impactful experiences. Cvent is headquartered in Tysons, Virginia, just outside of Washington D.C., and has additional offices around the world to support its growing global customer base. The comprehensive Cvent event marketing and management platform offers software solutions to event organizers and marketers for online event registration, venue selection, event marketing and management, virtual and onsite solutions, and attendee engagement. Cvent’s suite of products automate and simplify the event management process and maximize the impact of in-person, virtual, and hybrid events. Hotels and venues use Cvent’s supplier and venue solutions to win more group and corporate travel business through Cvent’s sourcing platforms. Cvent solutions optimize the event management value chain and have enabled clients around the world to manage millions of meetings and events. For more information, please visit Cvent.com.
TRAVEL TECHNOLOGY, AIRLINES AND AIRPORTS
Allegiant | September 23, 2022
Uplift, the only enterprise Buy Now Pay Later (BNPL) solution serving the world's top travel and retail brands, has grown its long standing partnership with Allegiant by introducing Allegiant Pay Powered by Uplift on all flights, hotel and car rental bookings making it even easier for customers to pay over time.The new brand Allegiant Pay Powered by Uplift aligns with Allegiant's company mission to offer value and affordability to customers, creating memories that last forever. This enhanced way to pay also now offers customers one easy click to estimate how much they can spend and pay over time, making the booking of their next getaway even easier and more budget friendly.
Since 1999, Allegiant has been connecting customers to the people, places and experiences that matter most. Focused on taking travelers from small to mid-sized cities and jet setting to popular leisure destinations, Allegiant now offers service into more than 30 airports across the country. Allegiant is also a travel company at heart offering easy bookings for all the necessities of a memorable family trip or group getaway.
"From inception, Allegiant has remained committed to affordable and accessible travel. That's why we're introducing Allegiant Pay Powered by Uplift, allowing our customers to go now and rest easy knowing they can pay it with low monthly installments. Our extended partnership with Uplift means Allegiant customers will have a flexible payment option for flights, hotels and car rentals as we continue to grow,"
-Scott DeAngelo, Allegiant Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer.
From the beginning of our partnership, Allegiant believed in the power of Uplift's pay over time solution to create yet another way for consumers to associate Allegiant with accessibility and value," said Tom Botts, Uplift Chief Commercial Officer. "One of the many reasons we enjoy our growing relationship with Allegiant is their commitment to consumer value, for not only flights but complete vacation packages as well.
Uplift partners with over 200 of the world's leading airlines, cruise lines, resorts and other major travel providers to offer BNPL payment options to help more consumers make meaningful purchases and experience the travel that they deserve.
Allegiant Pay, Powered by Uplift - is now available for purchases beginning as low as $49 and for 3 to 11 month terms, with no late fees or prepayment penalties. Customers can book today and fly as soon as tomorrow – even before they are finished making their payments. For more information, visit Allegiant Pay Powered by Uplift.
Down payment may be required. Actual terms are based on your credit score and other factors and may vary. Not everyone is eligible, and some states are not served, including IA and WV. Loans made through Uplift are offered by these lending partners: www.uplift.com/lenders.
Allegiant – Together We Fly™
Las Vegas-based Allegiant (NASDAQ: ALGT) is an integrated travel company with an airline at its heart, focused on connecting customers with the people, places and experiences that matter most. Since 1999, Allegiant Air has linked travelers in small-to-medium cities to world-class vacation destinations with all-nonstop flights and industry-low average fares. Today, Allegiant's fleet serves communities across the nation, with base airfares less than half the cost of the average domestic round trip ticket. For more information, visit us at Allegiant.com. Media information, including photos, is available at http://gofly.us/iiFa303wrtF
Uplift is the leading Buy Now Pay Later solution empowering people to get more out of life, one thoughtful purchase at a time. Serving the world's top enterprise level travel and retail brands, Uplift's complete range of flexible payment options drive higher conversion and loyalty for partners, while giving customers a simple, surprise-free way to pay over time with no late fees or prepayment penalties. Uplift is currently available throughout the United States and Canada. To learn more, visit Uplift.com.
TRAVEL TECHNOLOGY, INDUSTRY OUTLOOK
Expedia Group | September 14, 2022
Expedia Group announced its new global social impact and sustainability strategy to advance a travel ecosystem that is responsible, open, and accessible to all. Combining the company’s mission, purpose, and values with its traveler-centric mindset, the Open World™ social impact and sustainability strategy is focused on three priorities – increasing access for underserved travelers, democratizing the travel economy, and innovating sustainable solutions for the future of travel.
Earlier this year, the company announced its Open World technology platform – created for partners of all sizes to leverage and configure products and services needed to succeed in the travel ecosystem. Aligned with this innovation, and the belief that travel is a force for good, the next iteration of Open World extends to the traveler experience, community engagement, and environmental impact.
“Travel is transformative. It broadens horizons, strengthens connections and changes perspectives. With our new Open World™ social impact and sustainability forward-looking plans, we will further our mission to power travel for everyone, everywhere,Travel needs to lighten its footprint on the planet, and everyone should be able to experience it and receive the associated benefits. Now is the time to innovate the existing model. We have a responsibility to enable a stronger, more sustainable industry.”
-Peter Kern, Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Expedia Group.
The Open World™ social impact and sustainability strategy will tackle inequities in travel, accelerate meaningful change for the mosaic of travelers and communities that power the global industry, and ensure a healthy planet.
Expedia Group’s social impact and sustainability strategic framework includes:
Inclusive pathways for underserved travelers
Unfortunately, historic and social barriers still too often limit equitable and accessible travel. Per Expedia Group Media Solutions’ recent Inclusive Travel Insights Report1, demand is increasing as consumers are seeking more inclusive travel offerings when searching and booking. Expedia Group is increasing its own capabilities to improve the experience of underserved travelers by identifying and helping to lessen gaps. For example, Expedia.com has made improvements to accessibility filters to include options like elevators, service animal accommodations, roll-in showers, sign-language staff availability, and also expanded search features for travelers such as LGBTQIA+ welcoming properties.
What’s Next? To ensure more people are able to experience all that travel has to offer, Expedia Group will focus a portion of its giving to provide grants to impact-driven organizations working to remove barriers to travel for underserved communities around the world.
Economic advancement for communities underrepresented in travel
Expedia Group is strengthening economic opportunity across the travel ecosystem to ensure more people and communities can benefit from the industry’s growth and associated benefits. Using the power of its technology platform to help diversify the business of travel, Expedia Group will support small and local businesses, particularly those focused on improving the representation and experience of underrepresented travelers.
What’s Next? To help diversify the business of travel and meet traveler demand for more responsible options, Expedia Group will soon launch a program aimed at start-ups and small and medium-sized businesses in travel.
Prosperous planet for generations to come
Expedia Group recognizes the environmental toll that today’s travel industry often has on the planet and is committed to mobilizing its vast network of travelers, partners, and peers to innovate more sustainable business models and empower travelers to make more responsible choices. Fostering a healthy planet and a travel industry that mitigates and adapts to climate change is central to the Open World social impact and sustainability strategy.
Expedia Group recently joined the Travalyst Coalition and signed the Glasgow Declaration for Climate Action in Tourism. Under the Glasgow Declaration, Expedia Group has committed to deliver plans that will support the global goals of cutting emissions in half over the next decade and allowing the travel industry to reach Net Zero emissions as soon as possible before 2050. The Travalyst Coalition enables these goals by allowing travel companies like Expedia Group to deliver unified sustainability frameworks and methodologies to travelers across the globe.
What’s Next? Expedia Group is currently developing a long-term climate action plan and associated roadmap for greening its own operations while driving industry-wide change. A new program being developed in partnership with The Travel Foundation will offer training and practical guidance to destination marketing organizations (DMOs), enabling them to lead the way on climate action in tourism and catalyze meaningful change at a local level.
These three priorities build upon Expedia Group’s foundation and ongoing commitment to philanthropy. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic Expedia Group led programs including the Give the World a Shot initiative – a joint endeavor with UNICEF to enhance COVID-19 vaccination rates in communities around the world – as global, equitable access to the vaccine is in line with traveler values and essential to reopening the world to travel. Expedia Group donated approximately $10.5 million – vaccinating three million people and moving the travel industry one step closer to recovery.
Learn more about Expedia Group’s past impact work in its 2021 Global Impact Report and latest Inclusion and Diversity Report. For additional information, visit www.expediagroup.com/who-we-are/Impact--Sustainability.
The research for the Inclusive Travel Insights Report was conducted in collaboration with Wakefield Research, which included an online survey of 11,000 representatives, general population adults ages 18+ in 11 global markets – Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Japan, Mexico, the UK and U.S. – fielded between February 11 and March 6, 2022.
About Expedia Group
Expedia Group, Inc. companies power travel for everyone, everywhere through our global platform. Driven by the core belief that travel is a force for good, we help people experience the world in new ways and build lasting connections. We provide industry-leading technology solutions to fuel partner growth and success, while facilitating memorable experiences for travelers. Our organization is made up of three pillars: Expedia Product & Technology, focused on the group’s product and technical strategy and offerings; Expedia Brands, housing all our consumer brands; and Expedia for Business, consisting of business-to-business solutions and relationships throughout the travel ecosystem. The Expedia Group family of brands includes: Expedia®, Hotels.com®, Expedia® Partner Solutions, Vrbo®, trivago®, Orbitz®, Travelocity®, Hotwire®, Wotif®, ebookers®, CheapTickets®, Expedia Group™ Media Solutions, CarRentals.com™, and Expedia Cruises™.