The digital transformation happening in the tourism industry

26th September 2018

Seeing as September 27th marks World Tourism Day and tourism conferences are happening around the world, in this week's CTH News we'll be discussing... tourism as well as the topic for this year, technology.

The topic for this year's World Tourism Day is titled Tourism and Digital Transformation and it looks like it’s a heavily discussed topic throughout the industry.

Officials in Seoul, South Korea say they plan to use smart technology for virtual reality programs to prepare visitors for their trip; in Jamaica, the tourism secretary, Janice Griffith discussed the use technology to make the tourism industry more inclusive for guests and residence; and during a South African tourism conference, the use of technology creating new job opportunities in the travel and tourism industry was discussed.

The discussions throughout the industry globally show that technology is a huge factor for the tourism industry. However, the impact of technology globally and more specifically, in the tourism industry is something that we're all aware of. But, let's look at one of the factors that make it a talking point today and how it is affecting the industry.

The integration of mobile devices to our travel experiences

The use of mobile devices is present throughout our travel experience. From using airline apps to book flights; to storing our passport details on the app; and then storing our scannable boarding passes on our mobile phones; mobile devices are certainly becoming a feature in the tourism industry.

In fact, travel companies are going further to integrate mobile phones into their processes. For example, in order to reduce passenger’s luggage related stresses, German airline, Lufthansa have enabled passengers to track their luggage by using a link found on their mobile boarding pass. This feature gives passengers both the accessibility and the peace of mind. However, it’s not just travellers being affected by the use of mobile devices, but employees too.

Employees working in the travel industry are seeing the change, for example, Emirates are using smart phones to take in-flight food and beverage orders of business class passengers. The more tourism and mobile devices continue to work hand-in-hand, the higher the demand will be for tech savvy recruits.

the-digital-transformation-happening-in-the-tourism-industry-image-two Images from PaddleYourOwnKanoo

The value of staff who can deal with the use of technology both by travellers and as an employee; on the back end and the front end will surely become more prevalent. From a customer standpoint, staff who can handle the maintenance of apps and any potential operational issues will be in demand and also staff who have the skill to deal with face-to-face customers who may be using their mobile devices. Promoting employees to be technology literate is a step that the industry will take if the trends towards mobile friendly travel continues.

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