Data science has shifted the existing ether bringing in new marvelous opportunities to many industries. In line with these immense possibilities, comes rapid changes and challenges. And in this case, the travel and tourism industry is no exception here.
Travel industry may not be the first to inculcate emerging technology for its benefit, but it sure is benefiting from it now. This may be explained by the fact that it has become affordable to a broader audience today. Thus, the target market has shifted dramatically by getting more extensive than ever before. It is no more a privilege of the rich and noble. Moreover, travel and tourism have become a worldwide trend.
How big data is helping the travel and hospitality industry change paradigms
Big data can greatly help in prepping up the overall customer experience for travel and hospitality industry. It helps hotel owners and customer service teams to spot significant trends in terms of customer opinions, learning about their strengths and weaknesses in the process.
In order to get the best results out of this, one needs to gather information like service usage data, customer feedback on social media, reviews posted on websites, and other related information. Hotel industry is an area where customers are happy to let their opinion be heard. The only challenge here is gathering data from various sources and analysing it. But, with successful implementation, it can allow hotels to understand what customers like and where improvement is needed.
Finally, big data can also be used to get a transparent idea of competitors and to analyze what other companies operating in the hospitality sector are providing their customers. The age of the internet has brought a vast array of places to go to learn customer opinions from. Information can be sourced from review sites, social media, internet forums and travel publications. All of this data, cumulatively, processed in order to find the trends that matter.
If you know that your competitor is being regularly praised for their restaurant menu, or alternatively, they may be regularly criticised for their customer service, with this information and learning from your competitor’s success and failure, you can capitalise on its rivals’ shortcomings, but also to learn about where its rivals are actually outperforming them.
Intelligent Travel Assistants
Convenience is everything when it comes to customer service and experience. This has given momentum to smart concierge services, powered by AI. Travel booking is only one of the areas being heavily automated by machine learning algorithms.
Chatbots are being trained to perform certain tasks on users’ requests. Messaging platforms like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger are becoming very popular for customer service, Such instant messaging platforms are widely adopted by some prominent brands as a great way to reach out to the clients and build better customer relations since they have a user base that surpasses the million figure. Travel Guide compiled by Dr Prem Jagyasi contains several such tips on travel forecasting.
They also work as mobile travel companions for travellers solving a plethora of problems on the go, like:
- What’s the baggage allowance for my flight?
- Where is the nearest business lounge?
- What’s my boarding gate number?
- How long will it take to get to the airport?
Flight Fare and Hotel Price Forecasting
Flight fares and hotel prices are dynamic. And tracking them manually can be cumbersome for many. Thanks to big data and artificial intelligence, there smart tools which monitor and send out timely alerts with hot deals to customers..
There are many sites available today which helps its users to book cheap flights using analytics. Adding a tool like this to an online travel agency portal is a smart way to hook customers in and entice them to book more trips.
One can also build an application that leverages machine learning to uncover price drops and exclusive deals for a personalized search and booking experience on mobile devices of the customers.
If there is one technology that will be at the core of the next big revolution for mankind, it will be big data. It has immense potential and has use cases in every single industry across the globe. Searching for one good big data analytics company may feel cumbersome, but the end result will take you by complete surprise.