MAY 18, 2022

Officials from AAA Travel (AAA) have announced that 39.2 million Americans are expected to travel 50 miles or more this Memorial Day holiday weekend, reports Travel Pulse. The estimates for this holiday, which runs from May 26-30, indicate an increase of 8.3 percent growth over 2021, with air travel up 25 percent over last year and additionally surpassing 2019 levels. Despite gas prices reaching historical totals, AAA expects 34.9 million Americans plan to travel by car, an increase of 4.6 percent over 2021. “Memorial Day is always a good predictor of what’s to come for summer travel,” stated AAA Travel senior vice president Paula Twidale. “Based on our projections, summer travel isn’t just heating up, it will be on fire.” AAA predicts that busiest days for traveling by car will be May 26 and 27, while the Thursday before the holiday will be the busiest for air travelers.

US airlines are pressing the Biden administration to lift a rule requiring nearly all international air passengers to show proof of a negative COVID-19 test before entering the country reports Skift. Airline executives say many Americans are not traveling abroad due to concerns they will test positive in a foreign country and become stranded. Last Friday, industry group Airlines for America, noted a survey of its carriers estimated that dropping COVID-19 testing requirements would bring in an additional 4.3 million international passengers and $1.7 billion in incremental revenue. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg stated that while he did not think the testing rule would “be there forever,” lifting it would require the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to be confident “relaxing it would not harm the progress that we’ve made against the virus.” After a meeting with Buttigieg in Washington DC last Thursday, British Transport Secretary Grant Shapps noted, “My sense is that it’s moving towards endgame […] My sense is that by the summer.”

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on Monday issued the final paperwork on United Airlines' Pratt & Whitney-powered Boeing 777s, allowing the aircraft to resume flights, reports Business Travel News. The aircraft, grounded since February 2021, is now on schedule for May 26, with expectations to ramp up to between 30 and 35 aircraft by July. United SVP and CCO Andrew Nocella stated, “We have 52 of [the 777s], which represents about 10 percent of our capacity. So it’s really, really material.” Nocella noted an initial concern for this summer that both business and leisure demand was "coming too quickly," so it made changes to "slow it down" to keep it within the capacity available. While summer will be busy, United predicts this fall will show a large increase in business travel, with demand "maybe even go beyond 2019 levels, particularly for domestic, Latin and Europe.”

Miami International Airport (MIA) will begin offering biometric boarding via facial recognition on all international flights sometime in 2023, reports Travel Weekly. According to MIA officials and technology partner SITA, the installation will cover all of MIA’s 130-plus gates and will be the largest implementation of biometric exit technology at a US airport. At biometric gates, departing international travelers are not required to show a passport or boarding pass. Instead, a biometric facial-recognition system takes a photo, which is then matched to passport photos that the Department of Homeland Security keeps on file. This week, MIA released a video from biometric testing trials, showing that the process takes only a few seconds per passenger. Since 2020, MIA has used this technology to document checks for arriving international passengers.

Japan has announced that it will test a limited reopening to some tourists from Australia, Singapore, Thailand, and the United States later this month, marking the first time the country has welcomed tourists since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, reports Travel Market Report. According to a spokesperson from the Japan Tourism Agency, the plan is to start with 50 tourists traveling on a fixed travel itinerary. Tourists must be fully vaccinated and boosted, have travel insurance, show proof of a negative COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours of departure, and test again upon arrival. Japan currently accepts about 10,000 travelers per day, most of whom are foreign nationals entering the country under the supervision of receiving organizations and not for tourist purposes. The government is considering doubling this cap to 20,000 in June, with a further reopening to tourists at that time should the current test go well.
It is officially patio season in Boston and there is no better place to enjoy seasonal fare and refreshing libations al fresco than at Precinct Kitchen + Bar. Located in the heart of Back Bay, PK+B features two below street level outdoor patios ideal for drinks, dinner, or a next meeting or event. Take in the sights and sounds of the city while enjoying the menu, focused on seasonality and locality giving guests and diners the opportunity to enjoy New England seafood favorites like the New England Fish & Chips, Lobster Roll and Crab Cakes alongside elevated American cuisine including our famous Precinct Burger and charcuterie boards. Precinct Kitchen + Bar’s beverage program features a robust wine and beer selection and classic cocktails with elevated twists. Housed in the historic Police Headquarters on Berkeley Street, Precinct Kitchen + Bar is a true celebration of Boston's past and culinary future. Offering both indoor and outdoor space, guests will find the restaurant matches the sophisticated Back Bay neighborhood.
Located in the heart of midtown Manhattan, the Lotte New York Palace Hotel is best known for its breathtaking views, spacious accommodations, and unrivaled service. The Palace is a premier landmark hotel with a prime Midtown location. Following a recent $140 million renovation, Lotte New York Palace Hotel has introduced an entirely new level of sophistication and style. Featuring thoughtful amenities, each guestroom and suite offers the perfect blend of modern conveniences and historic charm to ensure a comfortable stay. From complimentary shoeshine and valet pressing services to impressive in-room workspace, guests can enjoy panoramic views of the Manhattan skyline amid guestrooms 25% larger than other luxury hotels in the city. Enjoy cocktails, shared plates, and a celebration of history at the one and only Gold Room at Lotte New York Palace.
When guests stay at Omni Los Angeles Hotel, they’ll enjoy endless possibilities for things to do in and around the hotel. Perfectly situated in downtown Los Angeles, atop historic Bunker Hill, the Omni Los Angeles Hotel at California Plaza provides easy access to cultural attractions, sporting venues, courthouses, and world class dining.

Ovation clients will receive a $20 Uber credit per stay valid for Uber rides or Uber Eats until May 31, 2022.

*Valid for reservations booked under the negotiated rate. Does not apply to groups, conventions, or packages and cannot be combined with other discounts.
Located right on the shopping and entertainment strip of the Königsallee, the 5-star Steigenberger Parkhotel Düsseldorf offers guests a warm welcome. Here in the center of the city, they can easily reach all the cultural and entertainment highlights on foot. The promenade on the banks of the Rhine is around 10-minute walk away.

The hotel has 130 luxurious hotel rooms and suites with high ceilings and modern comforts, including a flat-screen TV, minibar, safe, work desk, and air-conditioning, as well as free access to the spa area.
Located in the heart of Silicon Valley, The Ameswell Hotel is a one-stop destination.

With all-day dining options guests will never go hungry. With options available from 7 a.m. to midnight, they can start their day with cafe fare at The Flyby, enjoy California cuisine at Roger Bar & Restaurant, or snack at the custom Airstream bar.

With an array of amenities guests can work hard, play hard. The Ameswell offers a 24/7 fitness center, spa services and convenient access to the nearest hiking and cycling trails.

With ample room space guests won’t have any interruptions. With suites as large as 955 square feet, they’ll have plenty of room to spread out between Zoom meetings.
With an established reputation as Washington’s most discerning hotel, just blocks from the White House and historic DC landmarks, The Jefferson, Washington, D.C. is a 99-room luxury boutique hotel featuring an intricately thought-out design, elegantly appointed suites, modern amenities, experiential dining, and exceptional personalized service. In addition, an in-house historian is available on Saturday mornings to enhance guest’s experience at The Jefferson and in the nation’s capital.

Areas of discovery unfold at every turn – including private cabinet rooms and a cozy Book Room that offers guests a place to sit for morning coffee or an after-dinner cocktail surrounded by volumes of books on an array of subjects in addition to signed editions by our resident authors.
Rediscover Chicago located in River North and steps to the exclusive shops of the Magnificent Mile and historic sites along the Riverwalk, Trump Hotel Chicago brings sophistication and elegance to the heart of downtown Chicago.

Ovation clients can make it a summer getaway to remember with a $25 food & beverage credit and a one category upgrade based upon availability at check-in.
Ovation Travel Group is wholly owned by American Express Global Business Travel (Amex GBT). Amex GBT is a joint venture that is not wholly owned by American Express Company or any of its subsidiaries (American Express). “American Express Global Business Travel”, “American Express", and the American Express logo are trademarks of American Express and are used under limited license. “American Express Meetings & Events” is a division of Amex GBT.