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travel tech insights

5 Important Travel Industry Trends of 2016

As 2016 comes to a close, it’s important for travel agencies, travel management, tour operators, and mother major players in today’s travel industry to stop and reflect on the past 12 months in order to get a better understanding of what the coming year might have in store. With everything from technology to shifting demographics to new and emerging markets, 2016 was an influential year for the travel industry driven in large part by travel companies reimagining how they function on a daily basis - and that’s not to mention a host of global, political, and environmental events, each of which presented challenges and opportunities for travel companies worldwide.

Topics: travel travel trends 2016

How Technology Can Support Travel Management Company Growth

Technology has been changing at a revolutionary pace in recent decades, with the result being changes in the way travel companies operate in nearly every sphere of the business world, including corporate travel. This new rate of change is already having significant repercussions for travel management companies, many of whom now do business with corporate clients who are increasingly wrapped up in the culture of increased technological growth.

While staying relevant and discovering new value can seem daunting under circumstances such as these, the same types of innovative thinking and new technological systems can and should be applied to managing business travel.

Topics: travel erp technology erp system

How to Delight Customers with the Right Travel App

The word ‘delight’ may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of boarding passes, rental car vouchers, or confirmation e-mails - each of which are are elements of modern travel with its ever-increasing complexity. Replacing that complexity with simplicity, however, is a delightful proposition indeed, to say nothing of a major value proposition. And one of the best ways of cutting through this complexity can take the form of the right mobile travel app.   

Increasingly, modern travelers rely on their mobile devices for managing their travel, from bookings and scheduling to managing documents like boarding passes and rental car reservations.

Topics: Travel App Mobile Device Mobile App Mobile Travel

Why Shopping Baskets Are a Winning Proposition for Tour Operators

Flexibility is the cornerstone of modern travel. In an era where consumers are given more options and more freedom when it comes to booking travel than ever before, travelers are growing increasingly accustomed to the idea that their itineraries should be personalized to their exact desires.

Of course, such a high degree of freedom and such a tremendous wealth of travel options can become daunting, or even disorienting, especially when it comes to booking tours, attractions, and other activities as part of a trip. However, today’s tour operators are well-equipped to provide value to their customers by helping them make sense of the infinite options available to them.

This is where the shopping basket comes in. In this context, a shopping basket simply refers to the mechanism by which travelers are able to customize their own itineraries, selecting and purchasing transport and accommodations for a tour that would not necessarily have been packaged together otherwise.

Topics: Tour Companies Tour Operators shopping baskets shopping carts

The Flow in Workflows: Back-Office Automation for Travel Agencies

It would be an understatement to say travel agencies must work harder, faster, and more efficiently in today’s global travel industry to remain competitive among the variety of methods travelers have to complete bookings. Today’s travelers demand agile, transparent, and highly visible value chains that cut through the complexity of an industry with a wide variety of suppliers, tour operators, travel management companies, and other key players. As a result, travel agencies must leverage efficient, productive workflows and operational platforms to meet customer demands, especially in the back-office even though many customers might not be aware of these non-customer facing tasks.

But the question is: How can travel agencies improve their workflows and streamline their back-office processes to remain competitive on a global stage? The answer lies in workflows and back-office automation solutions that allow travel agencies to eliminate manual, time-consuming processes that once divided an agent’s attention from interacting with and positioning the right products to the right customer.

Topics: travel agency workflow back office automation process automation automated processes

Product Updates - December 2016

TBS travel booking system updates

New car supplier

  • A new car provider is now available in TBS: Ofran. For this supplier, the price which needs to be paid at the agency is composed of the car offer price + Excess refund insurance. All other extra services need to be paid at reception, when picking-up the car.

    For Ofran, the administrator can configure its own cancellation policy based on the contract the agency has with the supplier (Suppliers/Ofran/Cancellation contract). After the voucher is issued, the reservation can no longer be cancelled from TBS.

Established in 1990, Ofran is one of the leading car rental brokers in Europe serving millions of people around the world. Ofran has successful branches also in Switzerland, Sweden, South Africa, Russia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Greece & Cyprus.

Farelogix upgrade 

  • The connection for supplier Farelogix has a new option called 'Branded Fares'. Depending on the feature configuration, 'Branded Fares' will be requested/or not from the supplier at search time.

'Branded fares' refers to the option that provides the airlines the possibility to merchandise their products in a different way through the travel agencies, with features that go beyond basic fare rules (including certain services and facilities).

 

Amadeus connection update

  • For Amadeus supplier, when creating a reservation on a corporate fare, details regarding the fare will be saved later in the admin interface, in Reservations List, under Reservation details – References.

GoGlobal connection update

  • For GoGlobal supplier, the parameter MaxResponses is now visible in the supplier configuration panel. The value set for this option indicates the number of maximum results which GoGlobal will display in the search results.

Offer showcase

  • The Admin of TBS is now able to include in the offer showcase a certain hotel - 'Edit search parameters for offer' - which later can be searched by the reseller only by clicking on the offer showcase in reseller interface. The admin can also set here the dates for which the search will be made.

Topics: travel booking system Product updates travlist smart mobile app

Cutting the Complexity: The Importance of A Travel ERP Solution

Today’s global travel industry is awash in complex actions and tasks travel management companies must undertake to remain competitive and acquire and retain customers. But with so many players in the travel and tourism landscape - travel agents, tour operators, and more - customers too can find themselves struggling to navigate the wealth of options, methods, and modes when it comes to researching, comparing, and completing bookings. While the needs of the customer and TMC might vary, the desire for responsive, agile, and transparent operational platforms is key.

This is where a travel ERP solution is an important value proposition on both sides of the equation, for TMCs and customers alike. The capacity of a travel ERP solution to automated workflows and back-office tasks, and fast, accurate invoicing and documentation reduce headaches for both parties by streamlining once manual, time-consuming activities and providing TMCs and customers with greater visibility across each touch point of the value chain.

Topics: travel erp Travel Management Company TMC travel erp system

Why Travel Agencies Need Continuously Mapped Content Databases

Think about the concept of spring cleaning. That one day every spring when you go through your house, organize your possessions, give every room a good cleaning, and clear out any clutter that has accumulated during the past year, Without this yearly ritual, it’s not hard to imagine a scenario where you can’t find certain possessions, where important documents like bills go missing, and your house falls into complete disarray.

The same is true for agencies when it comes to continuously cleaning and mapping their content databases to ensure updated, accurate information about the products and services available from suppliers and for customers. Much like how spring cleaning makes for a better overall living situation in your home where things are neat and organized, continuously mapped databases means travel agency operators won’t miss out on the latest and greatest offers from suppliers, book inaccurate allocated hotels or accommodations, or be bogged down by slow search response times in their booking engine, travel ERP suite, or other technologies.

Topics: Tour Operator travel agents Static databases static content Content mapping content matching

4 Reasons Why Millennials Are Taking Over Corporate Travel

It’s no secret that millennials are a driving force in today’s travel industry. Whether we’re talking about adventure of budget travelers, the buying power and influence millennial travelers have is increasing each and every year, particularly as more and more travel markets emerge and mature, especially in Asia and Central Europe. What’s more, millennials are now set to emerge as a critical customer pool in yet another burgeoning travel and tourism market: Corporate travel.

According to a recent released earlier this year titled The Portrait of Business Travelers by travel industry group MMGY Global, millennials are poised to become the largest segment of the corporate travel sphere in 2017 and beyond. The report indicated the average business traveler booked about 6.8 trips per year, while millennials completed roughly 7.4 bookings per year in 2016 - a figure that is only expected to increase in the next 12 months.

Topics: Business Travel travel trends Millennials Corporate Travel trends

The Link Between Menus and Vouchers: The Importance of Offer Templates

Imagine a restaurant without a menu where the chef and kitchen staff simply presented diners with a list of available ingredients with the intent of making customers whatever dishes they desired. This means the kitchen staff could, at any given moment, be making a wide variety of dishes from meatloaf and roasted chicken to salads and stews. This might sound great from a diner’s perspective, but from the point of the view chef, it would be chaos. A menu not only help diners dial-in on what meal they’d like prepared, but it also allows a restaurant to limit its number of offerings, which helps drive down cost, increase efficiency, and enhance the overall quality of product it provides to its customers.

Just like menus in the restaurant world, the same is true of voucher and offer templates in today’s travel industry. Because travel agencies and travel management companies work with so many suppliers on the back-end and customers on the front-end, the importance of a streamlined offer and voucher system cannot be overstated in leveraging optimal productivity and efficiency. Utilizing a flexible, agile voucher and offer template platform is increasingly an important value proposition as travel agencies must complete more and more transactions each day to remain competitive and relevant in today’s global travel landscape.

Topics: travel travel agent Templates travel agencies offers vouchers