Technology Trends that facilitate Smart Travel Experiences

cockpit

Technology is much like the Joneses- always up to something new. Frankly you just can’t keep up with it however much you try.

But the usage of technology is not new to Aviation. Back in the late 20’s a variety of technological navigation aids such as rotating lights or radio navigation aids would help pilots achieve a smooth and safe landing. Then towards the 40’s Instrument landing systems (ILS) used the best features of both approach lighting and radio beacons with higher frequency transmissions. Over the past few years many airports/pilots are using global positioning system (GPS) in addition to ILS. The GPS has become a primary method for navigation between airports and is exceedingly precise.

It is critical for the aviation, travel and hospitality industry to keep up-to-date with the emerging technology trends so as to nail the (CSQ) customer satisfaction quotient. Nonetheless, with such major breakthroughs in technology, it is playing a very vital role with its capability to increase the effectiveness of business operations and improve the customer experience.

 

Internet of Things (IoT)

IOT

The internet of things, or IoT, is a system of interrelated computing devices, have the ability to transfer data over a network without requiring human-to-human or human-to-computer interaction. (IoT) involves internet-based inter-connectivity between everyday devices, allowing them to both send and receive data.

To explain simply; Smart homes that are equipped with thermostats,  appliances, heating, lighting and other electronic devices can be controlled remotely via computers, Smart phones or other mobile devices, is a example of IoT.

Similarly IoT technology is being used in hotel rooms to provide customers with a device that connects to everything from the lights, to the heaters and air conditioning, allowing all to be controlled from one place. At airports, this may mean using sensors and sending information to passengers Smartphone’s, alerting them when their baggage is nearby and allowing them to locate it faster.

 Recognition Technology

biometrics

The technology includes finger print recognition, facial recognition, retina scanning and various other biometric identifiers. Such technology is already being used in some hotels to allow access to rooms via finger prints, or to allow for semi-contactless check-outs.

As the number of travellers grows, airports have started to turn to biometric technology. This speeds up various airport processes by allowing passengers to complete check-in and go through security or passport control without having to deal with a human agent.

 Robots

robot

One of the most exciting technological developments in recent years has been the increased prevalence of robots in hotels, right from text-based chatbots and robotic assistants, to security robots, being used on the front desk as customer information points. The main benefits are their ability to function 24/7, without needing breaks or motivation, providing greater consistency than humans would be capable of.

With a constant need to improve airport security, robots are being deployed in some locations to assist human security staff, for the purpose of detecting concealed weapons and other hidden items that are not permitted on flights.

Chatbots are used to guide customers through the online booking process, asking intelligent questions along the way for seamless travel bookings 24/7.

Artificial Intelligence (AI)

AI-in-Airport

Perhaps the most obvious use is with chatbots possessing the ability to deliver rapid response times to problems or queries.

In fact, one of its most popular and effective uses is for gathering and interpreting huge amounts of data quickly and accurately, in order to draw conclusions about pricing strategies, revenue management, customer feedback from surveys, reviews and online polls, and even intelligently manage inventories, in order to build a clearer picture of current opinion, in real-time.

Blockchain

Blockchain

Although blockchain technology can sound confusing at first, it is actually pretty simple. Ultimately, it is a list of public records, where transactions between parties are listed or stored.

Despite automation, payments and settlements in the travel industry continue to be challenging and time-consuming. A complex distribution system, frequent cancellations and refunds, add to the operational challenges. Blockchain can bring in the seamless integration, agility and speed required between multiple players.

One of the most crucial aspects of blockchain technology is that data is decentralized and is more secure, traceable and transparent along with being resistant to modification and unwanted tampering. The decentralised nature of the blockchain means that information can never go ‘offline’ or be lost through accidental deletion or a malicious cyber attack, ensuring transactions are always traceable.

The travel industry relies upon different companies passing information between one another. For example, travel agents pass on customer details on to flight companies and hotels by way of overseas payment or loyalty programs. Blockchain makes accessing and storing important information securely and more reliably.

Airports use blockchain technology for tracking the movements of luggage, especially when dealing with international travel especially when the passenger uses multiple carriers and journeys to arrive at a destination. Using a decentralised database makes sharing tracking data between companies a lot easier.

online

For companies operating in the travel industry, it is essential to keep up with the latest technology trends. Understanding and adopting the trends allows the businesses within the travel industry to provide a better experience for the customers as well as aid in optimizing revenue management and overall business performance.

 

-Madhavi

 

PC-Future Customer; Airport Show; Hotel Technology; Digital Trends.

 

How Hotels can be an Absolute Game Changer When Traveling with Children

legoland malaysia

Image :Legoland Hotel,Malaysia

Here’s the thing about children: They’re completely unpredictable. Situations constantly come up that are totally out of your control and when those situations happen far from home they threaten to ruin your hard-earned vacation.

Too much moving around on tours can literally make them cranky and fussy.

When I travelled with my young children I remember carrying a whole lot of paraphernalia to keep them occupied for the “in between times” of touring and other planned activities as the amenities for them at  hotels used to be relegated to cookies , uninspired children’s menus and maybe a colouring book or two.

Thankfully, young globetrotters today have much more to look forward to: luxury chains are now plying on them with perks like cooking classes with famous chefs, bird-watching expeditions, and other activities and creative gifts beyond the standard run of the mill -stuffed teddy bears.

legoland malaysia 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Image :Legoland Hotel, Malaysia

All this pampering by posh properties, other than  the full fledged resorts, are putting oomph in keeping this picky clientele entertained.

But having said that here what Hotels can do to go out of their way to accommodate and please the juniors and their parents by offering clever and meaningful amenities.

  • Providing kids with child-sized robes and slippers, and gifts throughout their visit like coloring books, Frisbees etc.
  • Parents with babies, should be able to and borrow strollers, diapers and wipes.
  • A collection of creative experiences inspired by the destination such as kid-friendly tour of the city’s museums complete with a treasure hunt
  • Elaborate arrangements such as children under five get to eat for free at the on-site restaurants.
  • Family-friendly movies in its theater room, popcorn machines and candy treats machine
  • Toddlers play area and activities for young children such as kite making, shell collecting, and painting.

When you’re taking a vacation with your family, you want it to be just that — a vacation!

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Image:Kids clubroom Four Seasons,Chicago

Before you leave make sure you have looked at a hotel that has a variety amenities suited for family travel.

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Image: Centara Karon Resort, Phuket

Resorts that offer golf-cart access to the beach, and other numerous family-friendly amenities such as kid pool, playground, on-site indoor and outdoor games, walking paths, mini golf, etc can help you enjoy the holiday for both you and your entire family.

Can you think of any other suggestion/ activities/ freebies that hotels can offer to our young voyagers? Do share in the comments section.

Madhavi

 

PC: Google Images