Last updated: 09:15 AM ET, Sat December 26 2015

Travel 2015: The Business Travel and Travel Technology Stories of the Year

Business Travel | Gabe Zaldivar | December 25, 2015

Travel 2015: The Business Travel and Travel Technology Stories of the Year

This is the year that we all realized technology could indeed take our travels back a step or two.

Thankfully, that’s not how the entirety of the year unfolded, just those stories that invoked the most unforgettable headlines.

Below are just a few of the tech, gadget and travel stories that mattered most to that special kind of global adventurer: the business traveler.

United Goes Down:

In “Live Free or Die Hard” something truly ridiculous happens—outside Bruce Willis still featuring as the star of an action-adventure movie. The entirety of the Internet is shut down.

On a much smaller scale but entirely remarkable in itself, the same thing seemed to play out on one rather odd day in July.

United grounded its planes on the very same day that the New York Stock Exchange and Wall Street Journal had to temporarily shutter because of computer issues.

East Coast Freeze:

While the better part of the east is enjoying unseasonably warm temperatures at the moment, we would like to remind you of the deep freeze that took place last winter.

As we found in March, despite the astounding weather, hotels saw a rise on bookings. This bodes well as the weather becomes all the more capricious and temperamental in the coming decades.

Banner Year At the TSA:

2015 wasn’t what we would call a championship year for the folks at TSA who proved more capable of causing headlines than securing airline travelers’ safety.

There really was a flood of ridiculous headlines from which we could choose, but here are just a few you might recall fondly:

TSA Continues To Keep Us Safe From Space Rangers: TSA successfully stops an obvious toy from getting through security.

Passenger brings loaded gun to airport, passes TSA and boards plane: TSA manages to miss an actual gun, however.

TSA Chief Out After Stunning Security Lapse: From Rich Thomaselli’s report: “In 67 of 70 attempts — more than 95 percent — undercover agents were able to sneak fake explosives and other banned items and weapons past TSA screeners.”

However, the TSA did manage to secure the country from a wealth of shampoo bottles one size too large to pass through security.

American Airlines Goes to Cash:

American followed suit with the rest of the industry by ditching mileage terms for its frequent flyer loyalty program in favor of the actual cost of a respective trip.

This was obviously bad news for occasional travelers who fly by economy and a fairly nice gift for those already spending a great deal annually.

It’s just a sign of the times and sadly how we the consumer will have to think about loyalty programs.

Uber Polarizing:

Uber continues to be embraced on whole by consumers who enjoy inexpensive travel around major cities.

However, it’s the bane of those used to squiring travelers around varied metropolises. Things came to a violent boiling point in June when protesters blocked and attacked Uber drivers in Paris and Marseille.

Courtney Love Cobain turned out to be your unexpected beat reporter from the immediate area turning in social media posts during a scary and turbulent moment.

Air Traffic Out of Control:

The year just wouldn’t be complete with yet another instance of technical glitches causing absolute havoc on travel.

Back in August, a few air traffic control hiccups caused near bedlam for travelers in the Northeastern part of the country.

Technology: the cause of and solution to travel conundrums.

Paris and Brussels Shutdown:

While it’s difficult to touch upon such a somber note, it’s important to remember the utter tragedy that occurred in Paris.

The violence extended into a shutdown not just in Paris but in Brussels, which affected so many, including those in the business travel industry.

The above represent just a fraction of the moments that made 2015 its one special chapter in the dramatic tome of our lives.


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