In response to today's article in The Beat
about year-over-year increases this month in business travel bookings
, here is what we are seeing and thinking.
This October is very near October 2008 levels. This is the first month we have been able to say that all year. While existing business is still off dramatically from last year's levels, we have won a large amount of new business in the past two months. We are now seeing this business make a positive impact on our numbers.
Incentive business is gone, meeting business is stronger and leisure is about the same. Our battle cry this year has been to "Hang on to the business we have and win new!" This seems to be working.
We believe 2010 will be a positive year. However, we do not expect to see long-time customers traveling at 2007 levels until late 2010 at the earliest, and most likely not until 2011. We have to continue to "Hang on the business we have and to win new business" to get where we need to go.