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Quest Means Business
Joyous Reunions As U.S. Allows Vaccinated Travelers; British Airways CEO Says This Is A Very Important Moment For Aviation; COVID-19 Surges In Europe As The U.S. Reopens Borders; NYC Attractions Ready For Return In International Tourism; Empire State Building Welcomes Back International Tourists; CNN's Richard Quest And His Male Lover Tie The Knot. Aired 3-4p ET
Aired November 08, 2021 - 15:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
RICHARD QUEST, CNN BUSINESS ANCHOR, QUEST MEANS BUSINESS: An hour to go before the closing bell on Wall Street, just an hour of trading, and it
looks like we've got records all around -- records on the Dow and the other major indices, and a good reason why. If you look at what's happening in
the market, and you see what we're talking about today, the main events, the bonhomie and good cheer.
Welcome to America. Vaccinated travelers rejoice as they are admitted and can now visit the United States. British Airways Chief Executive tells me
it is a momentous day for aviation. The U.S. Commerce Secretary tells me it's a shot in the arm for U.S. economy.
So live from the 86th floor of the Empire State Building in New York City on Monday, it's November the 8th. I'm Richard Quest, and of course, from
the top of the Empire State, where else would I mean business.
Good evening. A warm welcome to the program tonight, which we've decided to bring from the top of the Empire State Building for good reason. It is the
most visited tourist attraction in New York, and it comes on a momentous day in global travel.
We are live from the building because after months of waiting, in fact, you can just about see us over there. We'll zoom in over the course of the
program. I'll give you a quick wave behind -- after months of waiting, worrying, and political wrangling. Today, this is what it was all about.
[VIDEO CLIP PLAYS]
QUEST: Vaccinated travelers finally allowed into the United States from the European Union. In total, more than 33 countries can now send vaxxed
passengers to the U.S. The scenes are heartwarming, tear-jerking, families reunited, hugs, people that they've not seen for 20 months or more, or
maybe never, for those who have come to see newborns.
Here in New York, where of course was the center of it, even though that was happening across the United States, it was a time for personal
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It is no longer on a screen, it's going to be hugs, it is going to be in-person catching up, a lot of stories to tell.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It feels nice to be kind of seeing your scan and seeing New York again and seeing people than e-mailing and Zooming, you can
see them now.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, I love the States. It's one of my favorite countries. I go here quite regularly. I'm spending the whole of January,
I'll be back in January to the States. So yes, this is a great moment for U.S.-U.K. relations. The special relationship is back on.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
QUEST: Now the airlines are also celebrating. You can tell how important today is and was. Great rivalries between British Airways and Virgin
Atlantic were put aside as they did simultaneous takeoffs on the two runways at Heathrow on opposite sides of the airport, both heading across
the Atlantic to JFK.
It has taken 600 days to get to this point, a special day for airlines, passengers and business.
QUEST (voice over): These are the routes that keep the global economy moving. For more than 18 months, they've been painfully quiet.
Back at the start of the COVID pandemic, then President Donald Trump announced he was banning most travel into the United States. Few would have
predicted that ban would last for most of 2021 as well.
Most travelers, some from the United States' closest allies, barred from visiting. For loved ones, that means separated by borders, months of
heartache. And for the airlines it's spelt financial disaster.
SEAN DOYLE, CEO, BRITISH AIRWAYS: We keep outlining the economic impact of staying closed and the human impact. So, there is a lot of people who
haven't been able to visit family in the U.S. They haven't been able to reunite.
You know, both countries have huge amounts of foreign direct investment going both ways, and that's going to be impacted by this impasse.
QUEST (voice over): As COVID levels ebbed and flowed, and vaccinations began to be rolled out, the U.S. position did not change much to the
frustration of European leaders.
"The travel ban seriously harms vital economic and human ties at a time when they are most needed," tweeted the E.U. Ambassador in Washington, and
Americans were able to travel overseas with some restrictions like vaccination, testing, or quarantines.
I'm a UK citizen. So I could fly from New York to London, on JetBlue's inaugural trip, and it was packed. The return journey, because I'm a green
card holder, I could travel, not so --
QUEST (on camera): Because Brits, even those fully vaccinated are not allowed into the United States. Well, this plane, it's about a quarter
QUEST (voice over): All in all, all changed on Monday. Vaccinated travelers finally able to visit the land of the free; separated families, a
moment to cherish.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I have been waiting for this moment for two years.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Our grandsons are here since the beginning of the pandemic, and we are not allowed to come to see them.
QUEST (voice over): And the global economy, a sign that things may be getting closer to normal.
QUEST: Now, we're in New York and we're on the Empire State Building. New York to London, of course, is the world's most valuable travel route. It's
worth a billion dollars a year to British Airways alone.
But what we're seeing here in New York was replicated -- all the emotional scenes -- across the United States.
Atlanta's Hartsfield, for instance, America's busiest airport, where we saw 30-year-old Ivana Pedroso, reunited with her parents who are coming up from
Brazil. Brazil was one of the banned countries. Ivana could visit them, this was the first time they could visit her.
Pete Muntean is our aviation correspondent. He's at Washington's Dulles Airport, and Pete, now you and I look at the business of it. The mechanics
-- this is a day of human interests, human nature. This is about bringing people back together again.
It's taken the U.S. a long time to do it. We thought they were going to do it in July. They've done it now. What happens next?
PETE MUNTEAN, CNN AVIATION CORRESPONDENT: Emotional reunion after emotional reunion here at Dulles, Richard, in fact, I have been here
throughout the pandemic. It is maybe one of the busiest days we have seen here for those 33 countries arriving here at Dulles International Airport.
Travelers from those countries, not only from Europe, or standing by for a flight from London Heathrow, another one later this evening, one from
Brussels from United Airlines, one from Frankfurt. I just caught up with a mother-in-law and son-in-law. The mother-in-law was from Hungary. That was
a big emotional reunion here.
We have also seen those reunions in Atlanta. In fact, Delta had one of the first flights arriving on U.S. soil from that South American contingent of
those 33 countries of flight from Sao Paulo, Brazil. And I just want you to listen now to the fact that these families have been separated by these
restrictions for some 600 days.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's very exciting. And I have been waiting for this moment for two years because she doesn't know my house. Because we bought
our house and they don't know my house, my home. They don't know where I live, you know, so I've been waiting for this moment for two years.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
MUNTEAN: Back here at Dulles, United Airlines tells me some 300 people were on that Frankfurt -- the Dulles flight that just arrived here, very
nearly full, Richard, which is such a huge comparison to where we were only a year ago when those flights were mostly empty. United says about 30,000
international travelers will fly on that carrier today, an increase of about 50 percent compared to last Monday.
Delta Airlines has seen a 450 percent increase in international bookings, but we are only at the start of all of this, Richard. You know, the U.S.
Travel Association says it will take until 2024 for us to get back to 2019 levels for international travel.
QUEST: Pete Muntean at Washington's Dulles. Pete, thank you.
So you want to come to the United States, maybe a bit of Christmas shopping, or even looking into next year. These are the rules that replace
The country specific, the old amber, green -- all of that, that's gone. U.S. land borders are open and these are the rules. Okay, here we go.
Firstly, adult travelers must be fully vaccinated. That's two vaccines at least 14 days since it happened. Under 18, there is no vaccine requirement.
Adults and children must test negative, antigen will do. It doesn't have to be PCR.
QUEST: Any vaccine approved by the W.H.O., so the AstraZeneca, even though not administered in the United States is valid. And airlines are enforcing
it because the one thing the U.S. does is if an airline brings somebody over who shouldn't have been brought over, they fine the airline, and
that's $35,000.00 fines.
So the service from the U.K. is up 21 percent with the three-day weekend, air fares. A sigh of relief, basically right across. The shares in airlines
-- we are a business program -- and U.S. carriers are all -- by the way, look at those fares. That's how the fares are looking.
The shares are higher as well. Shares in U.S. carriers, all higher right at the moment. A year ago, international routes seriously were restricted.
This is what Flightradar looked like, the Flightradar map looked like a year ago, and compare it to today and you will see quite a big difference.
A year ago, it was seriously restricted. Compare it to today, and you have a much greater number of options and flights coming across the Atlantic.
British Airways Chief Executive has described this as a day to remember and you can see perfectly how he means it. Sean Doyle told me after he just
flown across the Atlantic, it was an important moment for airlines and its passengers.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DOYLE: The first of the deployments was fantastic, stories of people reunited with loved ones they haven't seen for over 600 days is very
touching. But from a business perspective, this is very important for aviation, but also for the economies of the U.K. and the U.S.
QUEST: So, how are we seeing that in terms of British Airways? You've already put on an extra two flights, there is more to come. How will you --
what are your bookings looking like towards the end of the year and Christmas? They must be strong.
DOYLE: Yes, we're very encouraged. We're flying to 17 cities in the U.S. today. That would be 23 by December. So we're building quickly back the
network that we had. We're seeing a lot of bookings, a lot of bookings in every cabin from every sector. So premium is leisure strong, visiting
friends and relatives are strong, but corporates are traveling again and that's very encouraging.
QUEST: Are you seeing that? Do you think that this will -- I mean, obviously, with the pent up demand of customers, do you think that will
DOYLE: Well, I think we can look to the U.S. here in what we saw, which was a very strong rebound -- maybe a rebound, which confounded
expectations. So, we're hoping the same will happen, and then I think after that rebound, we'll figure out what the underlying trends are.
QUEST: Right. That underlying trend, and let's talk about the capacity, because capacity is still down.
QUEST: When do you hope to bring that back up fully? I mean, obviously, it's going to be demand driven.
DOYLE: Yes, of course, it will. I think we would like to reinstate most of the frequencies across the North Atlantic that we had by quarter three. But
in terms of absolute capacity terms, it could be '23 to '24 before we see the airline back to the size it was in 2019.
QUEST: On both sides of the Atlantic, what do you now need from regulators and governments?
DOYLE: Well, I think we've just got to keep on moving forward. You know, we can simplify this to the point where we have frictionless travel for
people who are vaccinated. That's what Europe is doing. We'd encourage the U.K. and the U.S. to take that one further step.
And I think, you know, then we can get back to doing business the way we used to, which I think is what everybody wants.
QUEST: Pricing is always a difficult one. Do you expect -- I mean, I suppose some people will say, between now and Christmas, make off like a
DOYLE: Well, no, I think we're offering great value. You know, we're adding capacity, adding seats, restoring routes. You know, people have
plans to make them know and book early.
QUEST: Two other thoughts. Firstly, January will be the litmus test there, won't it? I mean, this place is going to explode during Christmas with
visitors. With January and February --
DOYLE: Yes, but I think what we are seeing is fantastic progress in a number of fronts. You know, even the news last week about therapeutics and
booster shots, all of that tells us we're on the way out of this.
So, you know, my sense is that, you know, the winter marks a real turning point, and we're getting ready for summer there.
QUEST: Finally, the rest of the world, Asia, Southeast Asia, it's a much slower story there.
DOYLE: Well, it is. And at the same time, I think, it's a smaller part of our business. But if we look at our business in Africa, the Middle East, we
look at Europe and the U.S., we have a huge amount of network that we will be restoring and services to rebuild on.
I think you're right, parts of the world will recover a bit more slowly. But I think, you know, the core of our business model, which are those
markets is certainly rebuild time.
QUEST: And finally, you and I can get lost up in all the talk of capacity and this, but today was about more than that, wasn't it?
DOYLE: Yes. Today was about historical links between two great countries and the role the British Airways plays in forging those links and
maintaining them and connecting people. This is about people.
You know, there are some lovely stories on this flight. We're delighted to be part of it because it's what we do. You know, we create stories and
connect human beings across the world, and today is just, you know, one of those days that we'd remember for a long time.
QUEST: Remember for a long time.
Coming up after the break, you're going to hear from the President of United Airlines and also the U.S. Commerce Secretary. He says it's a shot
in the arm for American business.
Meanwhile, I'm on the 86th floor of the Empire State Building looking that way, but if I turn around and I look that way, look closely, I'm giving you
a wave. Now, I am there. Keep looking.
After the break.
QUEST: Welcome back. A spectacular day here in New York, top of the Empire State Building in the middle of Manhattan. It's beautiful weather, a
perfect day to be celebrating the reopening of the United States and the significance of that to the travel industry simply cannot be overstated,
because it's not just from Europe or the Middle East, it is also large parts of Southern America also opened up back to the U.S.
The United Airlines President told me that transatlantic bookings for the first time are now exceeding those of 2019. Brett Hart said that the
reopening will be a catalyst for both leisure and business.
I was joined by Brett Hart and the U.S. Commerce Secretary from Chicago. The Commerce Secretary said that this was just a shot in the arm economies
on both sides needed.
GINA RAIMONDO, U.S. COMMERCE SECRETARY: We are ready, Richard. We've been planning for this day for months and we are all very excited. As I have
said, America is open for business.
We are ready. We are excited, and it's a huge shot in the arm to the economy overall, but especially to the travel and tourism industry.
QUEST: Brett, we look at what United is doing. You've added flights. What can you tell me as best you can about the way the bookings look towards
BRETT HART, PRESIDENT, UNITED AIRLINES: Yes, thank you, Richard. Our bookings are looking really good towards the Holidays. Within a matter of
days of the announcement that the U.S. was reopening, our transatlantic bookings exceeded 2019 levels for the first time since the start of the
We're seeing similar numbers for Latin -- for the Latin market as well and clearly our domestic market has been doing extremely well. So we think this
is going to be a real catalyst for international travel quite frankly in all parts of the world.
QUEST: Madam Secretary, I was at WTM -- World Travel Market -- in London last week and what the U.S. is doing is a shift in policy in a sense. It is
no longer geographic when it comes to restrictions. It's all about the individual, and whether the individual is vaccinated. It seems to be a much
better way to proceed than these blanket red, green, amber countries. Would you agree?
RAIMONDO: Yes, I would agree. Thank you for acknowledging that. The old system was always meant to be temporary, and this system is we think,
better, it's easier to administer. It's clearer, it is science based. It is fact based -- based on advice of medical experts. So we believe it's not
only the right way, and of course, the safest to do, but we think it will be easier to administer, which is very important, given what we are
predicting a surge.
QUEST: And that surge, Madam Secretary that you are predicting, where -- I mean, we're going to get Europe and we're going to get traffic transit
traffic by Europe. But Asia where I know you're going later in the month, Asia still remains a problem, doesn't it?
RAIMONDO: Asia will take a bit of time. I think we won't see robust travel to and from Asia until well into next year. The Asian countries are still
I'll be going to Japan on Sunday of next week, still very restrictive. So, it will take some time before they -- before people can go and feel
comfortable going. It will require those countries to lift some of the restrictions in a science-based, methodical way in order for folks to
travel and also for people to feel comfortable when they do travel there.
QUEST: Brett, I noticed last week, and obviously I have a personal interest in this since London is my other home. I noticed that you're going
to 22 flights next year. You've already increased to London from the United States. When you look now at the growth of United's international profile,
where are you going to put the resources?
HART: Yes, so it's a great point, and as you may have noticed, in the spring, not only will we have growth to London, because we are adding five
additional flights into London, we've announced the largest increase in flying across the Atlantic in our company's history.
So what you're going to see is very strategic and opportunistic approaches to flying to different parts of the world that we have not flown to before.
But we think that we have a really unique fleet type, and that we can make some of these flights work where in the past they have not, and where quite
frankly, some other airlines cannot.
So you will see us being very strategic and thoughtful about how we utilize our aircraft and some of that aircraft, in particular, our wide-body
aircraft or aircraft that we would have otherwise been using in Asia, in the short term. But this presents a tremendous opportunity for us to try
If you look at Africa, we will have four direct flights to the continent of Africa from the U.S., Ghana, and Nigeria, and two flights to South Africa.
So this is a time when we have a real opportunity to try some flights and some routes that previously, other airlines may not have tried, but we're
confident that we can make it work.
QUEST: Madam Secretary, finally to you. You can't see the scenes behind me at the moment here at Kennedy. Families are now starting to arrive to greet
people. We saw in Sydney last week, of course, as the first LA-Sydney flights were at, you and I can get very tied up in the economics of it,
Madam Secretary, can't we?
We can discuss the policy issues until the cows come home. But this is really about people, isn't it? People visiting families and relatives and
people doing business?
RAIMONDO: That's exactly right, Richard. Exactly right. So many people haven't seen their family in almost two years, or maybe more than two
years. So with the Holidays coming upon us, it is so much more than just the economy. It's bringing families and loved ones back together again and
doing it in a way that everybody feels safe.
QUEST: The U.S. Commerce Secretary. We will be mistaken, of course if we took all the hoopla of today to believe that the crisis is over. It is not
by any means and the health officials say that Europe is now the latest COVID epicenter.
Look at the graph. Look at the chart -- and it shows the U.K. in red, the numbers of falling. The E.U. in blue where the numbers are rising, and the
U.S. in orange, which is now the lowest of them all.
QUEST: Cyril Vanier is with me from Paris. The problem now is of course that they're saying this. That A, either people don't care; B, they believe
they're vaccinated, Cyril, and C, they say, well, we've just got to get on with it.
CYRIL VANIER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Richard, I think it's undeniable that there is quite a bit of COVID fatigue here, and people feel they've been
through two years and heavy restrictions of vaccine mandates, mask mandates, and now people want to get back to normal life.
Normal life is pretty much what things have felt like at least here in France, for the last several months. That is, if you accept the basic
notion of the Vaccine Pass, which you need this pass, it's an app that shows you've been fully vaccinated, you need this to do pretty much
anything in France to go to the restaurant, to go to the cinema, to undertake any kind of leisure activity.
If you accept that principle, and if you have been fully vaccinated, then life feels pretty normal. But there is a concern, because cases have been
growing across Europe for the last five weeks or so, and multiple countries are now re-imposing mask mandates or social restrictions, social distancing
measures that they had been able to lift over the last few months.
So what is this winter going to look like in Europe? Still a big question mark, Richard. Really, it's going to depend I think a lot on the
vaccination rate in individual countries.
Overall, France has about 75 percent vaccinated adult population, that is, but that belies a vast disparity between Eastern European countries, which
sometimes have very low vaccination rates and Western European countries -- Richard.
QUEST: Cyril Vanier in Paris, thank you. Good evening to you.
As QUEST MEANS BUSINESS continues tonight from the Empire State Building, the city that never sleeps, is now about to stay awake a great deal more,
if you will.
We will talk to the man responsible for getting people here and tell you more about this magnificent building.
QUEST MEANS BUSINESS live from the ESB.
QUEST: I make absolutely no apology for showing you again and again, on this glorious November day in New York. The Empire State Building. It's
actually the world's most -- the world's most visited Uber destination in 2019. Take your pick. 102 floors with nearly three million square feet of
office space and it's an occupation at the moment, the rate is 16-1/2 percent for all of the owner's properties.
The Empire State Building is one of those places when visitors come to New York, I always say I'm not taking you to the top of the Empire State
Building. So for me to be here now is a real achievement, and I couldn't be anywhere else.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
QUEST: The highest structure raised by the hand of man. So said the New York Times when the Empire State Building opened in 1931. It opened as the
depression got underway. The building had the nickname of the Empty State Building, it was only a quarter full.
That nickname the Empty State Building could have been used again last year, when the pandemic it.
TONY MALKIN, CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, EMPIRE STATE REALITY TRUST: Well, there was a ban on all non-essential workers from the entrance into office
buildings. By the middle of March of 2020 to about 3-1/2 percent of the turnstile swipes into our buildings that we had in the year earlier period
QUEST: We surprised that more people didn't just hand out leases and finish it. Go out of business.
MALKIN: Let's put it this way. There was a lot of surprise in March, April, May of 2020. It was what we like to call the land of pivot and flex.
Constant fluidity in the situation.
QUEST: For nine decades, the building has stood in the center of Manhattan, a defining feature of New York's budgeting skyline.
MALKIN: It's bulletproof.
QUEST: $165 million renovation had just been completed when COVID arrived, and tourism revenues went to zero. But the owners held their nerve. And in
the spirit that this building was first conceived they planned for the future.
Now to this building itself magnificent. The tourists are back.
MALKIN: The tourists are coming back. Yes.
QUEST: Are you ready for the bonanza that is about to arrive once the U.S. opens up to -- pretty much Europe on those transiting through Europe.
MALKIN: I'll tell you, Richard. We are and I'll tell you something else what's really changed a lot. When we shut down and we did shut down from
March through July here at the Empire State Building we rethought -- first time ever, we'd already redeveloped $165 million redevelopment of the
observatory attraction. But for the first time ever, we went to absolute zero and we rebuilt our business in a different way.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Welcome to the world's most famous building.
QUEST: This is 103.
MALKIN: That's right.
QUEST: All right, hold on to your hat. We can see the edge.
QUEST: We can see the rock. And we can see the summit.
QUEST: On the other side is --
MALKIN: On that way.
QUEST: I mean, you're all showing a view of each other.
MALKIN: Well, actually, no, we're at the center of it all. We're the center of New York City. There's an international recognition. It lives in the
hearts and minds of everyone from five and six year old to nine year olds.
QUEST: And how does that happen? The Empire State Building has appeared in many movies and T.V. shows. And when it comes to the holidays, it's a
colorful part of the city's culture.
MALKIN: It speaks to the concepts of hopes and dreams. Everybody has hopes and dreams. And this doesn't belong to one culture. It was built by many
cultures. And it caught the fancy and the fantasy moment of the world.
QUEST: It's 50 years since the Empire State was the tallest building in the world, but that doesn't matter. Because today there are bigger, smarter
(INAUDIBLE) taller all buildings, but none quite like this. Richard Quest, CNN, at the Empire State Building in New York.
Richard Quest CNN at the Empire State Building in New York.
QUEST: I don't know who that chap is down there but we're not letting his sawed up here.
QUEST: Instead we have NYC and Company's CEO Fred Dixon is with me. Good to see you, sir.
FRED DIXON, PRESIDENT AND CEO, NYC & COMPANY: Good to see you, Richard.
QUEST: So you're in charge of bringing people to New York. But the reality is, you need no help in this regard. And large -- that the place is packed.
DIXON: Yes. You know, we're very excited about the moment. You know, this is such a beautiful day for New York in so many ways. You know, the holiday
season just ahead of us. The pent up demand, people looking to treat themselves. There's no place in the world like New York in Christmas, and
we're ready to welcome the world back.
QUEST: I can hear some people saying well, yes, that's all very good. But the reality is prices are going to go through, hotels are already
DIXON: Yes. You know, the demand is coming back much quicker than we expected, in many ways. So --
QUEST: Because it's not -- it's not just international travels, domestically, the U.S. is absolutely pouring into the city.
DIXON: Absolutely. And we've seen that across the board in the U.S. American destinations are doing really well right now. But I think as the
borders open, more Americans are traveling out, it will stabilize. But the deals are going quickly. So people should book now, whether it's New York
or other destinations.
QUEST: What are you -- what changes are you making here? What have you learned?
DIXON: Yes, we've learned a lot. You know, I mean, the outdoor dining experience is one of the biggest takeaways, I think, in changing the
experience for visitors in New York. We've also learned that, you know, health and safety, of course, is always going to be paramount. And our
hotels and our restaurants have taken that --
QUEST: But in terms of the offering, you know, Broadway shows, I mean, has the offering changed? Have you strategically changed the direction of NYC
and causes a result?
DIXON: Yes. No, I tell you, you can't mess with perfection. You know, New York City is one of those destinations that is so well loved, and so well
known around the world. And it's back, the Broadway theaters are back. We're going to have 30 shows on by Christmas, all your great restaurants
and favorites are here and open all the great retailers. So the New York City experience is here and it's ready to welcome you back.
QUEST: Now, when you -- when you came and you took over as NYC and Co., it was a different era. What have you learned as a result of this?
DIXON: Yes. You know, I mean, the importance of international cannot be understated. I know, you've stressed that time and time again, it's what
powers this city. And it's what's really driven a lot of our success. So 20 percent of the volume is international, but it's 50 percent of the spending
and 50 percent of the room nights. So for us, International is key and always will be. Business travel as well. It's going to be a continued focus
QUEST: That business, business versus leisure. Have you got any numbers on what you think the business travel will be down?
DIXON: Yes, it's going to be down significantly for a time.
QUEST: Right. But what's your projections are going when?
DIXON: All right. 25 for business route would be fully back. We're working to accelerate that, of course. And I think we'll see, I think as more
people back on the road for leisure, they're going to be more used to traveling and all of the changes and they're going to be ready to travel
for work again.
QUEST: New York, the way in which this city -- I mean, it's difficult to say, isn't it? You know, what it means. What would you say it means?
DIXON: I mean, I think New York is everything.
QUEST: Why then?
QUEST: There are bigger cities, there are more cosmopolitan cities.
DIXON: It's true.
DIXON: Yes. New York has joie de vivre about it, you know, New York has this energy and this dynamism that you really can't find anywhere else. It
has an attitude. You know, it has a -- it has a swagger that most destinations couldn't even strive for. And it is so uniquely New York, and
people asked, has that changed, has that gone away? And it has not. I can tell you that is the city that you have known and loved forever is back.
And it's back actually in even more friendly, more welcoming way.
QUEST: I find it. So tonight, you're going to light the building up, are you?
DIXON: We are. Absolutely.
QUEST: (INAUDIBLE) because they've got these special LED lights, sort of -- can make a million different colors.
DIXON: Yes. And it's going to be beautiful tonight. So tune in and watch. We'll be working with the British back in style.
QUEST: Good to see you, sir.
DIXON: Good to see you, sir.
QUEST: I appreciate it.
DIXON: Thank you for being here.
QUEST: Fred Dixon joining me here. We talked a lot. You know, at the end of the day, I think it was Tip O'Neill who said all politics is local. Well,
it was clear for (INAUDIBLE) by the way, you said that. Former Speaker of the House. But you can also say the same thing about us and our team. And
for those of us on the QUEST MEANS BUSINESS team the story is personal. For instance, Chris, my partner and I had gone to London to get married when
Donald Trump closed the country then two days later and we had to fly back before the doors finally shut.
So lots of people on QUEST MEANS BUSINESS are looking forward to traveling again. For instance, our producer Ronan, the man who is shouting in my ear
and becomes hysterical at moments. He will soon be going to Ireland for Christmas to see his parents and he'll meet his new niece for the first
time. The first move producer Bob will see his family in Yorkshire first time since Christmas 2019.
And you've got a glimpse of Chris already. He will -- well, yes, as I say, we finally did get married but we managed to do it in Las Vegas instead of
QUEST: He will return to London and he will be reunited with his beloved Golden Retriever called Brody. And that's QUEST MEANS BUSINESS. I will be
back at the top of the hour, a short dash to the bell. More like a profitable moment. That's QUEST MEANS BUSINESS. Coming up next, Connecting
QUEST: The sun is starting to set in your golden hour and the skyline is majestic. Tonight's profitable moment from the top of the Empire State
Building. We spend a lot of time on this program, talking about travel and tourism. For good reason, it's the world's largest single industry. But
tonight, we hope you also showed just why it's important. The human nature, people meeting friends, family, seeing babies, grandparents have not seen
for nearly two years.
And of course, starting to do business. I happen to believe that business travel is going to come back further and faster than perhaps we think just
how far of course we can't really tell. And so what is now next? Well, the industry cannot be complacent as the reopening continues. Now there needs
to be much greater attention on of course, climate change, and the industry's contribution to that.
They've got the bit between the teeth, the blame that travel and tourism gets is perhaps unfair. As an emissions emitter, it is not as bad as it's
made out. And there's still plenty of room to go. But that's up to the industry to make its case and to do a better job of doing so. For the
moment though, we can now all start to plan. Where are we going to go? The pent up demand that we know exists, the places that we want to see.
The bucket list you've just been waiting to dig deep into. All of that is to come in the days and weeks ahead. The markets are at record highs
tonight across the indices. And that's QUEST MEANS BUSINESS for tonight. I'm Richard Quest in New York. Whatever you're up to in the hours ahead I
hope your travels are profitable. I'll see you tomorrow back in the studio. Jake is next.