The future has arrived, and it has a strange sense of humor. Pokémon Go — an “augmented reality” game that requires players to travel to real world locations to capture imaginary monsters through apps on their mobile devices — is changing how millennials choose their travel destinations and hotels. These games have inspired a new generation of travelers, and present novel opportunities to businesses in the hospitality sector.
Our weekly client OTA & Travel Distribution Update for the week ending December 9, 2016 is below. Nothing too earth shattering this week, so we will keep things short . . .
Short-Term Rental Regulations Continue to Evolve [SHORT-TERM RENTALS]. If I were asked by a law student today to identify areas of the law most likely to need new lawyers in the future, I’d have to say the short-term rental industry. Monitoring San Francisco’s every-changing regulatory landscape alone will require at least 3 or 4 lawyers. In a surprising move, the mayor of San Francisco last week vetoed legislation that would have capped the number of nights that a host could make her residence available for nightly rentals at 60.
With the new year, we plan to post portions of the OTA & Travel Distribution Updates that I prepare and circulate among our hospitality clients each week. Although the posts will be a week or two behind the initial client updates, we hope that the information will nevertheless be relevant to those of you working in the digital marketing / e-commerce / distribution world. We hope you enjoy and benefit from these new posts. Below is the weekly update ending December 2nd, 2016.
If you had asked me one month ago to predict the winner of the presidential election, I would have been wrong. Therefore, rather than make my own [ill-fated] predictions of the changes that await employers when PEOTUS takes office, I consulted my trusty Magic 8 Ball. Here’s what it predicted:
Will the overtime rule ever become law?
MY SOURCES SAY NO.
We all have heard by now that the Department of Labor (DOL) rules extending eligibility for time-and-a-half overtime pay to some 4.2 million additional workers (including many employees in the hospitality industry) are on hold thanks to an injunction by a federal court judge in Texas. So what now? The DOL under the Obama administration was expected to appeal the ruling to the US Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit, but the Trump administration has different priorities and may decide not to pursue an appeal after all.
Greg Duff, Editor
Greg Duff founded and chairs GSB’s national Hospitality, Travel & Tourism group. His practice largely focuses on operations-oriented matters faced by hospitality industry members, including sales and marketing, distribution and e-commerce, procurement and technology. Greg also serves as counsel and legal advisor to many of the hospitality industry’s associations and trade groups, including AH&LA, HFTP and HSMAI.