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July 30, 2014 - 12:50 PM ET

Hilton Worldwide plans to equip nearly all of its hotels globally with digital check-in and room-selection capabilities by the end of this year, the company announced this week. The technology enables Hilton HHonors members to check in via their mobile devices or computers at 6 a.m. on the day before their stays and choose their rooms from either a floor-plan map or room list. Hilton plans to have the capabilities at U.S. properties in the Waldorf Astoria, Conrad, Hilton, Hilton Garden Inn, Homewood Suites and Home2 Suites brands by the end of the summer and at more than 4,000 of its more than 4,100 properties worldwide by the end of 2014. Next year, Hilton also will begin to equip rooms with technology enabling guests to use smartphones as their room keys upon arrival, with most rooms across its portfolio equipped with the technology by the end of 2016, according to Hilton. During that same period, Hilton will expand digital check-out capabilities currently available at U.S. hotels to its properties worldwide.

July 30, 2014 - 12:45 PM ET

FCm Travel Solutions partnered with the Dominican Republic's Emely Tours, which will help to create "a consolidated presence throughout the Americas," according to FCm Latin America and Caribbean Network director Maren Hanschke.

July 30, 2014 - 11:55 AM ET

The average daily rate at Marriott International properties worldwide increased 3.5 percent year over year to $151.39 during the second quarter, the company reported on Tuesday. In North America, ADR increased 3.7 percent year over year to $144.37, including a 3.5 percent increase in full-service ADR and a 4.1 percent increase in limited-service ADR. Outside of North America, second-quarter ADR increased 2.5 percent to $187.53. Global occupancy increased by 1.7 percentage points to 77 percent. Marriott's second-quarter net income was $192 million, up from $179 million reported in the second quarter of 2013.

July 30, 2014 - 11:35 AM ET

American Express reported a 1 percent decrease in global corporate travel sales versus the prior year-year period, to $4.9 billion. The slight decline followed three consecutive quarters of growth. The company also reported a $626 million gain from the closing of its business travel joint venture with investment firm Certares, which helped boost net income for the quarter by 9 percent to $1.5 billion. Total expenses decreased 58 percent to $361 million compared to last year, also attributed to the joint venture. Card-billed business in the Global Commercial Services division rose 7 percent year over year to $47.6 billion. GCS cards in force remained flat at seven million, but average cardholder spending rose 7 percent to $6,781.

July 29, 2014 - 02:10 PM ET

Hyatt Hotels Corp. has signed a multi-year agreement to add its global portfolio to the Egencia Preferred Rate program, the companies announced on Tuesday. Hyatt will begin adding its more than 500 properties to the program—which includes offering such benefits as rate discounts and free amenities—in August. The addition of the Hyatt portfolio brings EPR participation to more than 10,000 hotels.

July 29, 2014 - 01:35 PM ET

BCD Travel announced that it migrated "every client" to its DecisionSource business intelligence platform, replacing "multiple legacy tools" as part of an "ongoing multimillion dollar investment." The travel management company said the BI tool provides traveler monitoring, reporting and analytics.

July 28, 2014 - 03:15 PM ET

Customers now can use U.S. Bank's virtual card product to purchase air tickets, the bank announced Monday at the Global Business Travel Association's annual conference in Los Angeles. Launched in 2012 and in partnership with global distribution system Sabre and payments technology provider Conferma, U.S. Bank Travel VirtualPay previously could create single-use account numbers only for lodging bookings. U.S. retailer Macy's piloted the service in the United States, according to U.S. Bank. The bank also announced other virtual card enhancements, including the ability to instantly adjust credit limits and reimburse third-party service providers.

July 28, 2014 - 02:45 PM ET

Overall committed occupancy at North American hotels during the next 12 months is up 3 percent, and the average daily rate on those bookings is up 4.1 percent, according to data from TravelClick. Transient business bookings are up 5.1 percent year over year with a 4.2 percent increase in ADR, while group occupancy is up 2.1 percent year over year with a 1 percent increase in ADR. TravelClick's data is based on group sales commitments and individual reservations on the books from July 2014 through June 2015 in 25 major North American markets.

July 28, 2014 - 02:35 PM ET

Yapta launched a hotel rate tracking system "with early adopter customers" and a couple of travel management companies, including Travizon and Ultramar. RoomIQ is a companion tool to Yapta's FareIQ corporate airfare tracking system. Yapta's hotel offering, which has been in development for more than a year, "automatically tracks corporate hotel reservations and sends price drop alerts when room rate savings are available," according to Yapta. Clients can tailor the system "to identify a variety of specific cost-cutting scenarios." In addition to looking for rate drops at a booked property, RoomIQ also can track rebooking opportunities for "comparable room types, non-preferred properties to preferred properties, and like-to-like amenities such as parking, Internet access and breakfast," according to Yapta.

July 28, 2014 - 09:50 AM ET

Virgin America on Monday filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission a registration statement for an initial public offering. Virgin has yet to determine "the number of shares to be offered and the price range for the proposed offering." In the filing the airline indicated it provides "contractual travel discounts for over 175 major corporate customers," but acknowledged, "our smaller point-to-point route network and lack of connecting traffic and marketing alliances puts us at a competitive disadvantage to legacy carriers, particularly with respect to our appeal to higher-fare business travelers." Even so, the airline touts as a strength its blending of legacy airline and low-cost-carrier business models. The privately held company, which for years has publicly filed core financials, reported a $22.4 million net loss for the three months ending March 31, compared with a $46.4 million loss for the same period last year. Meanwhile, 2013 represented the airline's "first full year of profitability."