Welcome to Digital Luxembourg’s " What The Tech?!" series! As the tech landscape gets vaster and more advanced by the second, most sectors are turning towards tech solutions to provide 21st century services. Stay in the know this summer as we break it down for you tech-by-tech, and show you the Luxembourg innovators making technology happen.
This Week: TravelTech
Travelling today is a far cry from what it was 50, or even 15, years ago.
Remember “before”? We would visit our local travel agency, flick through a few brochures, watch the agent make a couple calls, and leave with a packet of paper and everything booked for us: from flights and hotels, to airport transfers and excursions.
Now, thanks to traveltech (the use of technology in the travel, tourism and hospitality industry) we have the whole world - quite literally - in our hands as we tailor-make our own vacations on our smartphones.
Wherever you may be headed this summer, chances are technology played some role in the research or booking process. AirBnB, TripAdvisor, Kayak, Skyscanner, and thousands more, enable us to make extremely informed decisions on our next destination, whether a remote village in the Andes or a noodle bar in Shanghai.
Business travelers opt for the fastest, most seamless door-to-door combos; millenials make it their mission to hunt down unique, Instagrammable experiences at affordable prices.
Needless to say, with so many destinations and experiences to choose from, we are demanding more and more from our precious vacation time. Inevitably, as our expectations grow, so must technology.
We have already come a long way with online booking and review sites, as well as mobile boarding passes and automated passport control. Even with the usual tech suspects (chatbots, conversational commerce, AI, blockchain and big data) onboard, traveltech’s development has only just begun.
Air travel in particular is seeing a significant shift as airports go biometric. Farewell to long lines at bag drop, and thanks to Single Token Travel, which captures passengers' biometrics and travel information in a single digital record, hours spent in immigration lines will soon be a distant memory.
And we are certainly going to be thankful for these advancements in the not too distant future…IATA expects 7.8 billion passengers to travel in 2036 – that is almost double the 2017 figures.
Amadeus, a transaction processor for the global travel and tourism industry, created the advanced Amadeus Schedule Recovery, which enables airlines to make quick decisions, including whether to cancel flights or switch aircrafts. Developed in partnership with Qantas, it has helped the airline achieve an impressive 60 percent decrease in air traffic delays.
For those who decide to avoid airports and delays altogether, they need look no further than VR and AR technology. Fly inside an active volcano, go on safari, brave the world’s highest bungee jump or even visit places that no longer exist, like Ancient Egypt! VR and AR also give customers a “test-drive” of high-end adventure trips before they commit to investing.
Smart hotels, automated customer service, digital concierge…it’s all taking off. Now let’s take a look at some of the innovative companies putting Luxembourg on the traveltech map.