Yes, it is time again for Topaz to make those earth shattering corporate travel predictions for the upcoming year. It is time for all of us to get back to the grind of work and leave all the thoughts of holiday festivities behind us. So let's do this:
a) A new business travel industry association will emerge that leverages the collective power of the industry and meets the needs of the membership.
b) Concur will fulfill their destiny and will purchase one of the top five travel agencies to become an end to end solution for corporations worldwide.
c) Justin Beiber will unretire before the end of February, tour for six months, and then retire again. Ugly baggy pants will sweep the world in a fashion storm that creates widespread supply issues.
d) Most of the Topaz team will blog happily all year long. The subjects could be corporate travel, travel in general, or just those obscure subjects that need to be written about.
e) The Olympics in Sochi Russia will be dominated by the US team, demonstrating a support for democracy and personal freedoms for all individuals in the world.
f) Car rental companies will see a decline in rental days and revenue because of relentless rising of rates and tactics of leveraging fees on unsuspecting customers.
g) Travel 2.0 will quietly disappear, confirming that managed travel is all about value to corporations.
h) The NY Rangers and Washington Capitals will NOT win the Stanley Cup, solidifying another year of pain and suffering for some fans.
i) Hotel rates will stay flat for the year, confirming that there is a glut of hotel rooms worldwide and building will slow - making growth only possible via acquisition.
j) Corporate Travel Departments will finally realize that a quality travel program does not assume that perfection takes place but now understands that independent third party assessments will in fact make them better in the long run.
k) Some travel agencies will not realize that treating the company that audits them with disrespect, anger, spite, and venom is a bad thing. They will just keep on doing it. Resulting in angry auditors.
l) Forrest Gump was right - life is like a box of chocolates.
m) Clemson and Texas play for the college football national championship game in 2014 (well really it is played in 2015 for the 2014 season).
n) Tony D. and his beloved Yankees miss the playoffs again, resulting in a switch of allegiance to the NY Mets, who always suck.
o) The Boss tours in 2014 resulting in way too much time off and bankruptcy for Brad.
p) Everyone in the travel industry will have a personally successful year!