Retail may not be restarting where you are, but now’s the time to prepare so you’re ready when re-opening day comes. There’s a lot more to it than simply outfitting employees with masks and placing 6-foot spacing indicators in the checkout line. Look for pointers and sources in Restarting Retail: The Unofficial Guide to Reopening Your Store, just one of the useful links on TGA’s COVID-19 industry updates and resources page.
Retailers are slowly prepping to re-open – maybe not immediately, but hopefully soon – and the time to reach them is now, while they’re gearing up. Let them know you’re in this with them; put your brand top of mind, and you could find your goods at the front of the store. Advertise in Travel Goods Showcase, which reaches more industry retailers than any other publication. Contact Cathy Trecartin, email@example.com; 877-842-1938, x-702.
Last week, TGA endorsed H.R. 7011, legislation that would require pandemics to be added to covered issues under business interruption insurance. Many travel goods companies with business interruption insurance received no benefits because pandemics were not covered.
On May 28, the House approved by a vote of 417-1 the TGA-supported Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act, which would make much-needed fixes to the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), including: extending the expense forgiveness period from eight weeks to twenty-four weeks; reducing the 75% payroll ratio requirement; eliminating 2-year loan repayment restrictions for future borrowers; allowing payroll tax deferment for PPP recipients; and extending the June 30 rehiring deadline. The Senate is expected to approve the legislation shortly.
News that Beijing has ordered state firms to halt purchases of farm products could well be an opportunistic political maneuver stemming from fundamental weakness on the demand side in China, said analysts. Earlier this week, Reuters reported that China has asked main state firms to suspend large-scale purchases of major U.S. farm products like soybeans and pork. That came in response to President Donald Trump, who said last week he would strip Hong Kong of its special status with the U.S. But soybean demand has not been strong in China anyway. READ MORE
THE NEW YORK TIMES
Airlines and airports around the world are doing everything they can to instill confidence that it is safe to fly again, despite the coronavirus pandemic. Airlines are requiring face masks, imposing new cleaning procedures, and using social distancing to board flights. As to the airports, they are screening passengers’ temperatures, using biometric screening to speed check-in, and using autonomous robots to clean terminal floors. But none of it is consistent. And it’s unclear whether the measures are enough. READ MORE
Use it or lose it. For workers lucky enough to receive paid time off, that phrase is shorthand for corporate policies that don’t allow employees to carry unused PTO days into the next year. During the coronavirus pandemic, it also carries a mental health warning. Time away from work – even if you don’t go anywhere – is more important than ever in managing stress and maintaining a sense of well-being. READ MORE
As governments call time on coronavirus and wind down financial aid for furloughed workers, the jobs market is set to become flooded with corporate travel consultants and account managers. As a result, industry observers predict a new type of so-called “micro agency” will appear – independent consultancies formed by laid-off corporate travel agency staff. They’ll embrace the work-from-home model, be well connected, and well placed to cater to those corporates downsizing their own travel programs. READ MORE
Online shopping continues to grow exponentially. Most recently, that is due in part to shoppers having desperate needs during quarantine for things like groceries and toilet paper. James Thomson, a partner at Buy Box Experts – a company that helps build brands on Amazon – said the COVID-19 pandemic helped speed up many people’s perceived resistance to online shopping. READ MORE
With countries starting to loosen lockdown restrictions, many nations are beginning to show spending improvements, according to Visa. Total U.S. payments volume dropped 5% in May from a year earlier. That’s a 13 percentage point improvement from April. Debit grew 12% and credit declined 21% year-over-year in the period. That’s a 17 percentage point and 9 percentage point improvement over April, respectively. READ MORE
These Harvard Business School co-authors of a forthcoming case study on the Cuban Missile Crisis argue that current U.S. leaders are neglecting three essential tactics that enabled the Kennedy administration to avoid global annihilation nearly 60 years ago. READ MORE
As more businesses turn to Facebook for marketing campaigns, the more expensive it will cost advertisers to advertise, based on Facebook’s auctioning algorithm, and the more difficult it will be to capture attention on social media. Here are three powerful reasons why video marketing is important in 2020 and how you can get better results with less of a marketing budget. READ MORE
THE NEW YORK TIMES
According to the American Hotel & Lodging Association, an industry group, the coronavirus outbreak has cost hotels in the United States more than $23 billion in room revenue since mid-February. As these properties prepare for a new operational reality – one that must balance federal, state and local laws and consumer anxiety about getting sick – the world’s largest hotel companies have all come forward in recent weeks to announce new cleaning playbooks. READ MORE
GOOD NEWS NETWORK
In what is being hailed “the ultimate form of social distancing”, a trio of autonomous cars are set to begin delivering thousands of meals to families suffering from food insecurity in Washington, DC. Optimus Rides, a startup that specializes in developing driverless vehicles for urban transportation, has announced that they will be deploying three of their cars for contactless grocery deliveries to low-income households. READ MORE
Missed last week’s issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.
- Prepare for the Future (TGA)
- How to Sanitize Your Luggage (PETER GREENBERG WORLDWIDE)
- The Latest Trend in Vacation Rentals: Long-term Stays (THE NEW YORK TIMES)
- Beyond Vanity Metrics: Measuring Social Media Success (CMS WIRE)
- Who Decides When Employees Are Fit Enough to Travel Again – And How? (SKIFT)