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travel tech insights

The Time is Now For Emerging Market Travelers

“If I'm an advocate for anything, it's to move. As far as you can, as much as you can. Across the ocean, or simply across the river. Walk in someone else's shoes or at least eat their food. It's a plus for everybody." - writer, traveler, and documentarian Anthony Bourdain.

As today’s world becomes more interconnected and technology makes it easier for people to travel to parts of the world previously unknown, more and more people are taking the above advice of Anthony Bourdain and traveling to and from new and emerging markets - for example, those in Asia, Eastern Europe, South America, and others. Masses of international travelers are flooding emerging markets across a wide variety of cultural spectrums such as Mexico, Malaysia, Turkey, and the Philippines, which is opening new and varied value chains for travel companies.  

Topics: travel trends Emerging markets Emerging market travelers

Click to Cart: Conversion and Comparison in the Travel Industry

You’re in an aisle at your local megamart looking at a product and trying to decide whether to purchase it. You read the description, examine the packaging, weigh the value proposition of buying it, whether it will actually perform the way you hope or help you accomplish the task you’re seeking complete. You’ve done the research on this product, spent a fair amount of time reading about it, seeking recommendations and opinions from others, yet you’re still unsure about putting it in your shopping cart. You wonder about the price, whether it may be less expensive at a different retailer, or, even after all this consideration, the product is a want or a need.

Topics: Travel website abandonment travel website conversion abandoned travel bookings trends Comparison shopping

Message Received: The Travel Industry and the Rise of Instant Messaging Technology

There’s been something of an arms race during the last few years in the travel industry as travel companies seek new, exciting, and innovative ways to invigorate customer engagement and relations leveraging technology as a method to reach more people more quickly. With an eye to technological advancements at all touch points in the value chain - from customer service to operations and planning - the name of the game in the last 5 to 10 years has been streamlining ways of managing the communication of products and services for the good of the travel company and customer alike.    

Topics: Travel App travel trends customer retention Travel customers Digital Technology Instant messaging

Mega Marts and the Value of a Travel ERP System

There was a time, though it may be difficult to imagine now, before the advent of the mega mart when shopping for groceries, home goods, hardware, and other domestic necessities was an all-day affair. Multiple stops at different specialty stores would be required, which would be costly, time-consuming, and you’d often end up overlooking or even opting out of some items on your list because of inconvenience or time constraints associated with visiting so many different retailers. 

But with the modern mega mart - you know which big name chain to which I’m referring - it’s easier than ever to obtain all the items on your shopping list by simply going to one place.

Groceries? New bath towels? Wood glue? DVDs? Clothing? All these items can be found under one roof, saving the customer time, money, and hassle. No longer do you have to drive all over town to complete your errands or sacrifice necessary items because of inconvenience, time-efficiency, or cost.

Topics: travel erp travel agency technology Travel App erp system trends

4 Must-Have Features for Tour Operator Software

Managing your tour operator software solution, like nearly all strategy solutions in the travel industry, is not a one-size-fits-all proposition. Different companies of different sizes with different business and customer engagement goals require a variety of solutions that are aligned with their scale, potential for growth, resource availability, and market share. Simply put, you wouldn’t pick-up your child from school in a moving van, nor would you attempt to haul a large camper or recreational vehicle with a small sedan. In order to complete certain tasks properly, you need to utilize the tools and methodologies that will ensure success and make it easy for you to repeat that success in the future. 

The choices tour operators have in selecting the proper software solutions is no different than deciding what kind of vehicle is best for any given situation. Cost, ease of integration with existing systems - ERP, Global Distribution Systems (GDS), and other optimized solutions - efficiency, agility, and the ability to collaborate with individuals across all points of the value chain are all factors to take into account when selecting a software solution - though, once again, the scale and degree of these factors varies heavily depending on the size of the company and its overall financial and customer-relation goals.

Topics: travel software Tour Operator Tour Operator Software trends

3 Ways Digital Technology is Changing the Travel Industry

The next time you’re at your local supermarket, take a moment and look around at the checkout lines. Sure, you’ll see your standard POS set-up, cashiers, and baggers, but what you’ll probably also notice a handful of self-serve check-out lanes where shoppers have the capability to scan, bag, and pay for their items without the assistance of a store employee.

These kiosks have seen a huge growth in popularity during the last few years - particularly in large chain retailers like Walmart, Target, and others - for the speed, efficiency, and convenience they offer consumers in the ability to customize and control their shopping experience from the moment they enter the store to the moment they exit.

Topics: Travel Industry travel trends Digital Technology Digital Innovation

How Lifestyle Branding is Reshaping the Travel Industry

It’s no secret that we as humans like to surround ourselves with like-minded individuals - people we can identify with and who look, act, speak, and think in a similar fashion. And for years now, companies have marketed products leveraging this desire for identification and connection to build scaleable customer bases and establish brand loyalty. Reshaping the travel industry

For example, a company looking to target urban professionals might create a magazine ad highlighting a young, sleek, well-dressed man or woman in a bustling, big-city landscape in which the company’s product significantly adds or assists the subject’s overall way of life.

Known as lifestyle branding, it’s perhaps one of the hottest trends in the travel industry in the last few years.

Topics: travel marketing trends Branding

Going Small: How Mobile Apps Impact the Travel and Tourism Industry

The travel industry is shrinking. Well, not necessarily the industry per se - in fact, reports from business groups and publications indicate travel was one of the most burgeoning industries in 2015 - but rather one of the primary ways travel companies interact with customers is getting smaller and smaller, more and more agile, in an effort to reach new customers and markets and maintain diversification and growth in 2016 and beyond.

We’re talking about mobile applications and how travel companies are leveraging the devices in your pocket right now to enhance their efficiency and agility in an increasing competitive global marketplace. Smartphones, tablets, laptops, and other mobile devices have not only changed the way customers research and book their travel arrangements, but they’ve also fundamentally shifted the way travel companies view devices as tools for continued interaction and communication with would-be travelers.

Topics: Mobile Device Mobile App trends Apps Internet

The Comeback of the Cruise

Ask any number of travel industry insiders and they’ll all tell you the same thing: Cruises are back.

According to a recent poll by Cruise Line International Association, 83 percent of the group’s agents expect to see sharp increases in cruise packages sales throughout the rest of 2016 and beyond. In addition, 77 percent expect travelers will spend more money on cruise packages this year than in 2015. 

But what’s even more staggering is that 24 million people are expected to take a cruise of some manner during 2016 - a huge increase from just 15 million in 2006. That jump equates to the cruise sector clocking in at a $119 billion industry, a figure which is only expected to rise as cruise lines expand into new and emerging markets such as Asia, Cuba, and others.

Topics: Travel Industry travel travel packages Demographics Cruise