How AI is reshaping the travel industry? | Tangled AI

How AI is reshaping the travel industry? | Tangled AI

Digital transformation is often associated with #AI. AI has already sprawled across a wide array of industries; it has impacted several conventional industries that had little to no exposure to powerful technologies in the past.

An industry like travel is no stranger to digital transformation. Some of us would recall the massive shift that we all experienced when the ticketing system moved away from manual to online in most travel modes, be it air, rail, or road.

The next massive shift was in the area of AI. AI has already begun to unleash its full potential by providing astounding experience and hospitality to the travel industry users. From booking hotels, flights, and renting cars to helping you plan trips to places, #artificialintelligence has begun to establish its roots firmly in the travel industry.

From the customer’s perspective, AI is all about better travel experiences. And from the travel agent’s or the service provider’s perspective, AI is all about making their lives easier and providing an enhanced experience of travel to customers. In a survey by Booking.com, it is revealed that about 29% of global travelers are comfortable with a computer planning an upcoming trip based on their past travel experiences while 55% of people do not care if it is a real person or computers who answer their queries, as long as it is responded.

Let us now explore how AI is reshaping the travel and tourism industry.

How AI is reshaping the travel industry? | Tangled AI

AI recommendation algorithms

Every person visiting a travel website or platform is likely to leave their pattern behind. AI algorithms make use of such patterns by utilizing the data in it to fetch the interests of the person. Typically, an AI recommendation algorithm offers the following suggestions for your upcoming trip -

  1. Give personalized recommendations to your next destination.
  2. Create a budget and plan the trip accordingly by analyzing your past trips.
  3. Gives better insight into inexpensive hotels and lounges around.
  4. Offer better car rental deals.

Interestingly, a recommendation application called UtripPRO combines all these features into one platform. It is developed by Utrip, a Seattle based company. The UtripPro uses #machinelearning algorithms to offer a personalized itinerary to travelers that also offer recommendations on places to visit, lounges to eat, flight schedules, and historical monuments around their itinerary. Such recommendations help travelers reduce their burden on planning and choosing places to visit while they travel.

Virtual tours of destinations

#augmentedreality blended with AI is being used to provide virtual tours of the places that are on your bucket list. These virtual tours offer a visual appeal and help customers by providing a preview of the place that is next on their bucket list. It even offers walk-in tours of hotels and destinations based on their past preferences.

Customer loyalty programs

Retaining customers in the travel industry has always been a challenging task. People tend to change their loyalty towards a service provider frequently for better offers and rewards. Therefore to retain the loyalty of customers, travel agencies are making use of stored data and offering personalized offers to their customers. These offers are sent through emails. They could be discounts on travel packages, complimentary gift certificates, or simply a better check-in experience. These gestures and putting special efforts to prepare a personalized experience are done using AI analysis.

Traveling companion — chatbots

Want a friend for your next trip? You are in for luck as there are several AI-powered chatbots that provide you a great company and assist you along your expedition. And if you are a tour operator, then you should definitely consider investing in chatbots because 58% of customers believe that technologies such as chatbots and voice assistants have changed their perception of a brand in a good way. Chatbots are the new face of the travel industry which can provide quick and intelligent replies to customer queries. For instance, Sam is an AI-powered chatbot that has been built to ease traveling queries related to places to eat, historical places to visit in the vicinity, etc. It even integrates all your trip details into an organized itinerary.

AI price forecasting

If you have booked flight tickets, you must have seen the high fluctuations in ticket prices. It is hard for most of us to keep tabs on fares while planning trips. Thankfully, AI offers price forecasting to manage flight fares and other miscellaneous expenses within your budget.

Travel aggregators often rely upon dynamic pricing tools along with predictive analytics to retain customers and expand their travel business. AI helps these travel companies by collecting customer data and their past trip details and uses a self-learning algorithm to offer dynamic pricing based on seasonal offers, demands, and other concessions.

Travel security

Besides providing customer satisfaction and increasing revenue, AI is also playing a part in travel safety. Airports, busy tourist hubs, and stations are secured to a greater extent today with the help of AI-driven technologies. In the past, we only had body scanners and X-Rays to detect weapons and other dangerous stuff in a person. But today, there are several AI-driven devices, like the Evolve Edge checkpoint system that is capable of automatically detecting hazardous stuff and weapons possessed by a person. It does so by performing a facial analysis and recognizing the mood of a person. The best part is it performs a quicker analysis than the X-Ray machines.

Breaking language barriers

Audio translators have cemented their place in most international travelers’ arsenal. It is not uncommon these days to see #NLP(Natural language processing) used in text to speech recognition or vice versa. Also, with the launch of several AI translators, people have become closer and communication barriers have been shattered. With Google Assistant’s interpreter mode, Google has taken a step closer to enabling communication between people speaking 44 languages. With these advancements by AI, tourists no longer have to fear unknown lands and they can safely embark on a journey to various parts of the world.

Prevent ‘over-tourism’

Over-tourism is nothing but the tendency of different people to visit the same place again and again just because it is popular. AI can avoid this by tapping into less explored regions around the area and reducing the crowd at the main touristy places. AI firms are developing self-learning AI algorithms that are capable of recommending less explored places and distribute them evenly across a traveler’s itinerary. Also, over-tourism is becoming a pressing issue for locals due to the damage to the ecology and is also responsible for the wear and tear of popular monuments.

How AI is reshaping the travel industry? | Tangled AI

Final thoughts

Travel and tourism companies are constantly reinventing themselves in a bid to stay ahead of their rival companies. The emphasis to incorporate AI and data science technologies into the travel industry will propel the growth of the travel industry in the next few years. In fact, by 2024, the global travel AI market is expected to surpass $11 million. Most companies are gradually becoming more AI conscious to transform themselves digitally and want to keep customer satisfaction as their main USP.

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