Top 5 Things We’re Thankful for in a Corporate Travel Comeback

Thanksgiving dinner

As we approach Thanksgiving season in the US, the topic of gratitude should be at the top of everyone’s mind…or at least near the top, somewhere between the gravy boat and sweet potato casserole. 

Here at FCM, we like to use this time of year to pause from our busy routines and reflect on the goodness all around us – even in times of uncertainty. And these past few years have certainly been uncertain. Since the start of the pandemic, we (like so many others in the corporate travel industry) have seen our fair share of setbacks. Yet despite all of that, we’ve been lucky enough to have some bright lights amidst the bleak. 

So whether or not you plan on putting yourself in a turkey coma this year, here are the top 5 things we at FCM are thankful for all year round. 

1. Corporate Travel Agents 

Our customer-facing agents are out on the front lines, working hard and long hours to answer travelers’ calls. Even though things have been a little crazy with staffing shortages, we know we can count on our agents to be there for our travelers, whether they’re booking the best deals or offering support should plans go disarray. We know it’s hard work, but they make it seem so effortless…kind of like Grandma prepping Thanksgiving dinner.  

Account manager

2. Account Managers 

Our account managers are dedicated to using their expert knowledge to help clients find the best solutions for their travel programs and make travelers’ lives easier (no wishbone necessary). While we’ve always been grateful for our account managers, we now appreciate now more than ever how they’ve guided unsure clients toward realizing and achieving their travel goals. 

3. Corporate Travel Recovery 

When the Omicron variant hit this time last year, it was another gut punch to an already injured industry. We didn't know what was next or when things would get back to normal…or if they ever would.  

But thankfully, things are finally starting to look up. 

With global airline passenger loads currently at 82% of 2019 levels, seat numbers are just 13% shy of their pre-pandemic levels – and the gap continues to close! It's been a long time coming, but it looks like we might finally be seeing the light at the end of its tunnel.  

Couple at reception

4. Travel Suppliers 

You can’t serve a Thanksgiving dinner without turkey – and we definitely can’t do what we do without our travel suppliers!  

These past few years have been disruptive, stressful, and (if we’re being honest) frustrating for everyone involved. But that didn’t faze our air, car, and hotel suppliers. Since the beginning, they have been committed to getting service ramped up and back online while still remaining dedicated to the health and safety of their travelers. From investing in mobile apps for contactless check-ins, to ramping up cleaning initiatives, we’re so grateful for their efforts.  

5. Travel Managers 

Last (and most certainly not least), we are so grateful for the travel managers who worked alongside us through the difficulties of the pandemic. Together, we had to make tough calls and navigate the unprecedented; but in the end, our partnership got their program (and people) back in the air. Throughout it all, they were committed to working together to find new (and better!) ways forward. 

We know it’s been a challenging time for the entire corporate travel industry. We might not ever get back to “normal,” but we’re going somewhere different – and we’re getting there together.  

So above all else, we at FCM are thankful for each other: an industry that banded together, weathered the pandemic and came out even stronger. 

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