If you have visited an airport recently, you must have witnessed the travel industry’s propensity to maintain archaic and outdated technologies. Dot-matrix printers and old terminals deployed by popular airlines for seat management are some of the elements that make air travel an antiqued affair. But that doesn’t mean technology has not revolutionized the travel industry. In fact, it’s changing the way people travel.
Humans have never traveled as much as they do currently. Over four billion travelers whizzed through the air in 2017. What’s more, these travelers are becoming more demanding than ever; they want everything, and they need it now! They expect speed, personalization, authenticity, security, and seamlessness.
For travel companies and other service providers in the travel industry, meeting these high demands needs a new level of service delivery – that’s where technology comes in. Technology has already reshaped the way people work, live and behave. It has revolutionized how people search for items on a travel website, review, choose, and experience travel. Here are the megatrends in technology that are reshaping the travel industry.
Blockchain, and particularly crypto-currencies, were the talk of 2017. This nascent technology allows for secure and decentralized storage and sharing of information. It has the potential of establishing and improving trust while alleviating friction and corruption. In addition to finance (the distributed ledger tech), Blockchain has the potential to streamline different operations in many industries, and travel isn’t an exception.
In the travel industry, security is an important consideration for both travelers and travel agencies, airport authorities, and other stakeholders in this industry. Biometrics is a single piece of the puzzle in achieving seamless and secure cross-border travels. Blockchain technology seems to bring a real difference in establishing interoperability, inclusivity, scalability, and even easier financing.
2. DFY (Done For You)
Every business is seeking an opportunity to automate much of its processes. As the automation increases, DIY (Do It Yourself) will gradually shift to DFY (Done For You). With the advent of Artificial Intelligence (AI) automation isn’t limited to just physical tasks; both large organizations and startups have been automating different processes and tasks including mental ones.
Automation has already taken root in the travel industry; from inventory management to seamless reservations and transaction. However, AI doesn’t stop here. Consider the possibility in travel for an automated personalization of the kind consumers get on Amazon. It’s possible to have digital concierges like Alexa and Siri, but for self-driving cars or travel.
2. No-filter experiences
In this digital world overflowing with information (and much of which is challenging to trust), consumers want unfiltered experiences that can inspire them. Currently, both novice travelers and the world-class adventurers are interested in entirely new trips, from boutique agencies providing ‘surprise’ vacations to expedition-style vessel to discover the fantastic Arctic region, everyone wants a unique experience.
Surprisingly, virtual and augmented reality content makes it possible to access these unique and exclusive experiences. In fact, you can test-drive, before paying a premium price.