Will AI Change the Travel Industry? As with nearly all businesses, technology offers the travel industry endless opportunities.
The pandemic only increased the speed of tech adoption in all industries, travel included. A survey by McKinsey shared that because of COVID-19, “companies have accelerated the digitization of their customer and supply-chain interactions and their internal operations by three to four years.”
Room service robots
Two Chinese hotel giants invested in ExcelLand, a manufacturer of 3,000 robots. Hotel robots are already being used in a small number of hotels.
BTG Homeinnes is looking at these robots to control costs and safeguard guests.
Travelers can chat with providers during every stage of their journey. And they won’t (always) feel like they’re talking to a robot like in the past. Advances in AI have made this type of communication hassle-free and more realistic.
United Airlines has launched an “Agent on Demand” service that allows travelers at the airport to video chat with a customer service representative simply by scanning a QR code. (Remember when QR codes were a thing of the past and now see them everywhere).
More and more airlines and airports are deploying facial recognition technology. How do you feel about this technology? Will it save you time in the airport at check-in?
Tech Adoption Accelerates
Travel Tech Adoption Accelerates refers to the increasing rate at which technology is adopted within the travel industry. Technological advancements have significantly impacted the travel industry, leading to various innovations and improvements in how people plan, book, and experience their trips. Here are some key points about the accelerating adoption of travel tech:
- Mobile Applications: The widespread use of smartphones has revolutionized travel planning and booking. Mobile applications have become famous for travelers to research destinations, book flights, and accommodations, access digital boarding passes, and receive real-time travel updates. Travel companies have invested heavily in developing user-friendly mobile apps to cater to the growing demand.
- Online Travel Agencies (OTAs): Online platforms like Expedia, Booking.com, and Airbnb have transformed how people book travel arrangements. These platforms offer various options, competitive prices, and user reviews, empowering travelers to make informed decisions. As a result, OTAs have witnessed significant growth, and traditional brick-and-mortar travel agencies have had to adapt or face challenges.
- Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML): AI and ML technologies have found applications in various aspects of travel, including personalized recommendations, chatbots for customer service, and predictive analytics for demand forecasting. AI-powered virtual assistants help travelers with their queries and assist in their journey, making travel more convenient and efficient.
How do you feel about AI?
- Internet of Things (IoT): The IoT has enabled the development of intelligent travel experiences. From connected luggage that can be tracked remotely to bright hotel rooms with automated controls and personalized preferences, IoT devices enhance the convenience and streamline the travel process.
- Virtual and Augmented Reality (VR/AR): VR and AR technologies have revolutionized how people research and experience destinations. Virtual tours and 360-degree videos provide immersive experiences, allowing travelers to preview locations before booking. AR applications help travelers navigate unfamiliar places and provide real-time information about attractions, transportation, etc.
- Contactless Solutions: The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the adoption of contactless technologies within the travel industry. Digital payments, touchless check-ins, and biometric authentication systems minimize physical contact, enhance safety, and improve efficiency at airports, hotels, and other travel-related establishments.
Will it make travel easier?
- Big Data and Analytics: Travel companies leverage big data and analytics to gain insights into customer preferences, market trends, and operational efficiencies. This data-driven approach helps tailor travel experiences, optimize pricing strategies, and improve customer service.
- Sustainability and Eco-friendly Solutions: With growing environmental concerns, travel tech adoption also focuses on sustainable and eco-friendly solutions. This includes initiatives like carbon offset programs, digital ticketing to reduce paper waste, and using renewable energy sources in transportation and accommodations.
The accelerated adoption of travel tech has transformed the travel industry already, empowering travelers with greater control and convenience while allowing travel companies to enhance their offerings and provide personalized experiences.
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