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March was truly a month that many of us would remember, but for the wrong reasons. As Covid19 wrecked global markets, the travel industry was first to take the blow. Also, in just a few weeks the conversation shifted from worrying about an Amex shutdown to thinking about loosening of welcome bonus restrictions. Here’s a quick recap of some of the top stories we covered during this month.
This seems like aeons ago, when I wrote this at the start of the month. Amex is in the midst of making its tech operations even more robust. While this may not be an imminent threat any more, I’d sure not take risks when it comes to Amex and inviting a possible account shutdown.
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Industry associations were already sounding warnings about the travel industry grinding to a halt. With the stimulus package, we might see a temporary band aid but we’re still not sure what the picture would look like in September.
I wrote about how the bailouts are set to reignite a debate about corporate welfare and workers’ rights. Also, elections are looming, so travel industry bailouts are all set to dominate the discussion.
Social distancing is the new normal. Even when the travel industry reopens, people will still be skeptical. I opine that it will take much longer than what many people are predicting in order for travel to bounce back to ‘normal’.
While we all feel for the workers who are suddenly unemployed, this letter aims to address management issues and sets forth a few recommendations for the way forward. The travel industry cannot operate in isolation from the government, regulations, environment or the community. They should be doing more than just making the right marketing noises.
While it may be gloomy right now, there’s light at the end of the tunnel. The industry will eventually make a comeback. However, which airlines and hotels will survive this phase and thrive later?
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I put forth the point whether Chase will relax restrictions on credit card applications or go one step further and remove the 5/24 rule, albeit temporarily.
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