Travel Technology: What You Should Look Forward To In 2017?

Apurva Jaiswal's picture

The travel industry undergoing a transformational change, thanks to rapid advances in technology. Innovations such as mobile applications, digital transactions, and online bookings are creating efficiency at an operational level. Plus, they add convenience to both the travel companies and customers alike. Here is examining a few game-changing trends that could potentially change the way travel industry operates.

Gigantic strides in technology over the last few years have begun changing the way people travel and how businesses operate. Technological innovations such as mobile applications, digital transactions, and online bookings have been a ‘shot-in-the-arm’ for the travel industry. These innovations or trends are creating efficiency at an operational level and convenience to both the travel companies and customers alike. As the New Year dawn on us,let’s look at a few game-changing trends that could potentially change the way travel industry operates:

More Mobile: An increasing number of ticket bookings are happening through the mobile phone. Pre-travel activities such as search for flights, prices, destinations, hotels and even checking for tourist attractions are being done on the mobile. Users are more likely to use mobile phones to book tickets for flight and accommodation in ‘’on-demand’’ or urgent situations. Ticket booking companies have begun to collaborate with hotels using travel agency software or tour operator software to provide discounts to mobile users based on their real time location and need. This initiative by the booking companies canhelp forge a stronger customer relationship.

Big Data: A fast growing trend, big data is being adopted by several industries as we speak. With the aim to collect valuable data about customers’ preferences that can be translated into plausible solutions for business growth, big data is indeed creating waves.Travel industry is hoping to benefit a lot from big data; we now have mobile applications and software solutions that predict airfare pricing.Some hotels have startedusing data to understand a guest’s preferences to make the experience more personalized.

Cloud Passport: Sometime in the future, passengers may not be required to carry their passports to board the flight. Technology might just help establish the concept of Cloud passport that will store all the relevant and required information necessary for a travel. This will help save a lot on time and make the travel experience even more effortless and pleasant. It will also reduce the number of stolen passports.

Blockchain Technology:A new technology in the field of financial transactions, Blockchain has caught the attention of quite a few industries including travel. In the current scenario, there is a lack of transparency across the several intermediaries in the travel industry such as credit card, settlement services, and travel management companies leading to mistrust. The payment process is lengthy and costly too. Blockchain solves the problem by making commercial transactions more transparent and by preventing fraud.

Artificial Intelligence:When it comes to personalized communication, Chatbots are fast becoming the ‘’in-thing’’. With the deadly combination of their ability to operate everywhere and their higher language processing capabilities, chatbots may well be the next big things for travel brandsin their efforts to pep-up the customer interaction experience. You might as well be prepared to interface with what we can term as a ‘virtual travel agent’ which would carry out tasks such as finding the best airfare, hotel prices and even book tickets upon confirmation.

Virtual Reality (VR) & Augmented Reality (AR): These concepts have captured the imagination of stakeholders across industries including those of airlines and hotels. It is only a matter of time before travel brands embrace these concepts that could help them with brand promotion and customer experience. Imagine a traveller benefiting with a ‘’taste’’ of his trip and accommodation virtually,before actually experiencing it.Enticing enough, isn’t it?

Internet of Things (IoT): The IoT with the inter-connectivity of devices has managed to move closer into the lives of human beings. With its huge dependency on devices and applications it’sonly a matter of time the travel industry will begin upgrading itself by embracing IoT. Eventually, we might see more efficiency in the processes - from ticket booking to information on travel delays and to the travel experience as a wholedue to IoT. Intelligent systems will enable faster detection of malfunctions and predict issues an operator could otherwise miss. 
The travel industry undergoing a transformational change, thanks to rapid advances in technology. Technological changes mentioned above and other exciting ideas from start-ups wouldinevitably spread their influence to the travel industry to redefine travel for both business and pleasure.