The global travel industry is facing a lot of unforeseen challenges and is rapidly adjusting their approach to the customers to stay in line with the latest tech trends. In a race to provide customers the unique experience, travel companies are training professionals to meet and exceed expectations both in-person and online. We put together a list with the latest progressive technologies that will help you out navigate through the recent industry tendencies.
Personalization has become one of the most important things customers are looking for when planning their trip. “One size fits all” approach hasn’t been enough for a regular traveler for a long time. It began as personalized ads popping up on the side of the screen with the latest offerings based on a person’s searches and purchases. Corporate customers are especially valued in the traveling business since they travel often and the price is usually not a deciding factor for them. Airline companies started giving business people specialized, personalized offers, and accesses to special discounts and offers. With the personalized approach customers are more likely to come back making the investment profitable and effective.
2. Online booking
Two-thirds of all reservations are made online, including lodging, flights, and vacation activities. People are turning more and more to online bookings since it’s super convenient and they can organize every detail of their trip upfront. So, if you are renting rooms, make sure you have virtual tours and plenty of photos included; if you are an airliner your customers would love to not only purchase tickets online but to pick their seat, to book a lounge at the airport or take a look at the entertaining features of the flight. In fact, put online everything you possibly can, it will pay off in the long run.
3. Solo travelers
More and more people every year decide to go on a trip or various trips around the globe. A couple of decades ago this used to be highly unusual, but today the trend has changed. Solo travelers have a very broad range of needs and demands. Some people simply enjoy traveling alone without having to compromise with a companion. Others have a specific goal in mind when travel, like meeting their soulmates going on particular social events. The vast majority of young people travel around the world just to explore new cultures, like Bashar Ibrahim, while documenting their experiences in online platforms like blogs, video blogs, or YouTube channels. Read more about Bashar Ibrahim’s traveling adventures and fascinating journeys.
Besides young people, solo travels have become more popular among senior citizens too. Instead of going to traditional elderly homes, they prefer to book long cruises around the world or long-term stays in hotels and private lodgings. This is a new way people spend their golden years and it represents a huge opportunity for travel companies on this whole new market.
4. Local experience
If you type in “local experience” in a search engine online, you will get thousands of results offering you to wine and dine with locals on every destination imaginable. Tourists today don’t want to be seen in Hawaiian shirts with Kodak around their neck. Rather, they want to truly experience local life, eat locally grown food, and interact with the residents. One of the new trends is connecting travelers with local families with whom they would spend a week or two, eating, sleeping, and just soaking in native culture. This is quickly becoming one of the top tendencies among leisure travelers, as well as the ones looking for an adventure.
5. Eco-friendly travelers
Caring about the environment has become very popular among travelers. Being aware of pollution travel can cause, they are trying to give back to nature as much as they can. This triggered an eco-friendly movement across the globe. Customers now demand electric cars more often or go sightseeing using electric scooters. Some have even gone a step further, turning their vacations into a volunteering affair in caring for wildlife.
6. Chatbots and AI
These days it’s hard to come by a live person to talk to. Chatbots overtook the customer service support field completely. Chatbots are always available, kind, smiling, and never late. It’s a traveling industry’s perfect answer for demanding customers. This kind of Artificial intelligence registers consumers’ behaviors and gives feedback accordingly. It’s also able to interact with customers giving them bits of advice and making intelligent and sometimes even funny comments. One more advantage of the AI is that it doesn’t need any additional training; the more it engages in conversations the more it learns, it’s capable to draw conclusions based on the customer’s answers.
7. Virtual reality
VR has found its way to the travel industry providing customers with a unique experience. Some tourist sites are too risky to visit, or maybe a customer is not physically able to enjoy some activities, but with Virtual reality tours that is no longer an issue. It allows travelers to digitally visit any locality, enjoy the pyramids in Egypt or enter a stadium for a baseball game. It’s a very promising concept that hasn’t been fully utilized by tourist workers just yet, but it’s quickly making its way to become a standard, expected feature instead of being an extraordinary one.
8. Blockchain technology
Blockchain technology is mostly connected to cryptocurrencies, but recently it has been implemented in different industries, including tourism. When a travel agency is booking a hotel for a customer, it has to give out all of its information to various platforms. If the customer needs a flight also, the security level drops leaving customer’s details very vulnerable. This is where blockchain technology comes in. Since the data is decentralized, this can add multiple layers of security. It is especially useful when it comes to international financial transactions, where there is no trust from either side, to make transferring funds more transparent.
New technologies are affecting every industry, including tourism. What today sounds like science fiction, tomorrow is probably going to be a common feature. Whether you are serving adventurers or business people, tourist workers have to keep up with the rigorous demands of the new age travelers.