Washington – One clear takeaway from the US Travel Association’s Future of Travel Mobility conference: Sustainability and innovation are not just buzzwords, they are central pillars of industry growth over the next few years.
Leaders from America’s largest travel, transportation and technology companies join public officials at a day-long event held at Union Station in Washington, D.C. on Sept. 20 to address changing consumer demands and the environment as travel recovers. Revealed that it is evolving to address sustainability. The speaker explored issues important to travel his mobility and traveler experience over the next decade, including sustainability, frictionless and safe travel, emerging trends and innovative technologies.
The event is US Travel Association President and CEO Geoff Freeman and MGM Resorts International CEO and President Bill Hornbuckle Learn about the innovative sustainability measures the Las Vegas tourism industry has taken and the near-term policies needed to lay the groundwork for a stronger and more sustainable future for the industry nationwide.
Extending charging access to all parts of the country is a priority for the association, while sustainable travel options such as electric vehicles are becoming more common in urban areas.in a fireside chat with Executive Vice President, Public Relations and Policy, American Travel Association Tori Emerson Burns, President and CEO, Enterprise Holdings Chrissy Taylor He stressed the need for an industry-wide approach to making EV infrastructure accessible to all Americans.
“We need to make sure that the areas where people live have infrastructure.” said Taylor. “Charging and infrastructure should be fair for everyone, not just highways.”
Taylor touted Enterprise’s rapid move to electrify its rental car fleet and get its customer base accustomed to EVs. This is the realization that electrification is the future of the car rental industry.
‘Electric cars are here to stay’ Said Brendan Jones, President of Blink Chargingis a leader in the deployment of electric vehicle infrastructure.
In addition to vehicle electrification, automation was an important topic of discussion. Cruise Chief Operating Officer Gil West said:shared a compelling video of his company’s self-driving vehicles picking up passengers on the streets of San Francisco.
“It’s a great moment to see the birth of new modes of transportation.” said West.
Taylor’s call for a more interconnected and sustainable travel industry was later repeated: Mitch Landrieu, Senior White House Counselor and Infrastructure Implementation CoordinatorIn his remarks, Landrieu emphasized the role that infrastructure investment projects can play in creating jobs and strengthening communities.
“It’s not just about building the bridge, it’s about who’s building it, what it’s made of, where it’s going, and which communities have access to it.” Landrieu said. “It’s about lifting America and moving its generation forward.”
The Future of Travel Mobility conference highlighted changing consumer preferences as a imperative to drive more sustainable travel options. Panel discussion speakers discussed how companies’ environmental commitments and changing traveler expectations are impacting travel, and how the industry can thrive into a more sustainable future.
“Travelers increasingly want to do the right thing when it comes to sustainable and responsible travel.” Said Sangeeta Naik, Global Head of Strategic Partnerships and Marketing, American Express Travel. “Our customers are demanding this and it’s holding us all accountable.”
“Business traveler customers are looking at sustainability as a deciding factor.” Added Gene Garris Hand, Vice President of Global ESG at Hilton, said:. “Our corporate customers want to partner with other purpose-driven organizations.”
Implementing more sustainable travel options is especially important for the industry as business travel accelerates. Business travel is expected to recover significantly in the second half of 2022 and into 2023, according to US Travel forecasts.
Future of Travel Mobility speakers largely agreed with US Travel’s prediction that business travel will strengthen in the near term, although a full recovery will take time.in a discussion with US Travel Association National Chair and Carnival Cruise Line President Christine Duffy, American Airlines CEO Robert Isom It strongly refuted those who predicted that business travel would never return after the pandemic.
“You are wrong, wrong, wrong when it comes to business travel and aviation.” Declared Isom.
Demand for leisure travel is strong and near-term growth forecasts for business travel are robust, but the expected softening in demand, combined with high inflation and volatile fuel prices, poses a threat to future growth of the industry and its commitments. , US Travel prepares for headwinds. Achieve greater sustainability.
“As the industry continues to face obstacles to a full recovery, the Future of Travel Mobility conference was the perfect opportunity to advance policies critical to a more sustainable and innovative future for travel mobility.” Freeman said. “By bringing together travel and government thought leaders, we can ensure alignment on the key issues that will make travel more internationally competitive and sustainable in the decades to come. I can do it.”
the last speaker of the day, Rep. Sam Graves, Ranking Member of the U.S. House Transportation Infrastructure Committeethe next Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization bill, made the crowd expect something.
“We are currently gathering information and ideas from stakeholders, but we probably won’t start the process until early next year.” Graves hinted that the bill could take shape by next summer.
Click here to see the full agenda for the Future of Travel Mobility event.
Click here to watch the Future of Travel Mobility recording.
Additional event photos are available from US Travel’s communications department.
About the American Travel Association
The US Travel Association is a national non-profit organization representing all components of the travel industry. US travelers estimate that he will spend $1.1 trillion in 2022 (still 10% below his 2019 level). US Travel advocates for policies to accelerate an even recovery across the travel industry and restore growth in this economy and jobs, which are essential contributors to the nation’s success. Visit ustravel.org for information and recovery-related data.