Digital Tech Makes Future Of Travel Simple
Agoda, the online travel booking platforms, has predicted that 2018 will see consumers looking for a simpler way to book their travel accommodation. Whilst many major travel industry players continue to deliver complex products and loyalty programs, independent travelers will instead choose companies that deliver streamlined travel experiences.
Omri Morgenshtern, Chief Product Officer at Agoda, said, “Consumers today expect to get clear, straight-forward and useful information quickly. They don’t have the time or patience to do things a service can do for them. They will look to offerings that add value by simplifying the way they travel – from researching destinations to ordering room service. At agoda we are committed to drilling down to the basics so that our customers can experience the properties and services they want without weeding through unnecessary complexity.”
Here are agoda’s predictions for the travel industry in 2018:
Simplification wins over “buzzword” technology
The last few years have seen plenty of hype around developments in AR and VR, with some working to apply these interactive experiences to the travel space. Whilst the benefits of these new opportunities should be explored, there has been little consumer demand for such experiences, and the hardware isn’t advanced enough to provide real value.
“At agoda we’ve already been leveraging AI to deliver the best customer experience, from using it to deliver personalized accommodation recommendations to AI-enabled chatbots. Expect to see more of this in 2018,” said Morgenshtern.
Travel as an integrated experience
Year-on-year, agoda has seen a 60 percent overall increase in the use of its mobile app, for both researching and booking travel, suggesting consumers increasingly prefer an easy, on-the-go experience. In 2016, about 40 percent of agoda’s bookings globally were done through mobile. Fast-forward one year later, and that has increased to 50 percent.
With the rising success of multi-functional apps such as WeChat in China, in 2018 this trend is set to catch-on throughout the rest of the world to feed the increasing need for a more integrated travel experience.
Millennial as a mindset, not an age bracket
With the term ‘millennial’ beginning to take on meaning beyond just one’s age, in 2018 there will be a shift towards millennial as a mindset. agoda’s global Travel & Tech Study showed that regardless of whether a traveler is a millennial or not, what interests them is the same. For example, the top two preferred travel activities are seeking out nature or scenery (67 percent for millennials vs. 72 percent for non-millennials), and food and dining (67 percent for millennials vs. 70 percent for non-millennials).
People of the millennial mindset often live a fast-paced and demanding lifestyle, and as such, expect everything at their fingertips. Mix this with the desire to have unique, shareable experiences and we will see a rise in demand for new types of travel, delivered seamlessly.
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