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Tourism Big Data

fhotels, Flickr (CC license)

It’s no secret that technology is changing the way in which we do tourism. It’s possible to research, plan, pay for and execute a trip using little more than a mobile device. Large tourism enterprises across the globe are snapping up apps, business solutions and more to ensure that they’re part of the digital revolution, but are these emerging technologies translating to an excellent visitor experience?

The hotel that talked

Internationally, large hotel groups are in the process of introducing smart hotel rooms and other forms of technology designed to make the visitor experience a streamlined one, reducing the need for human interactions. These range from website and app chatbots, keyless entry via mobile devices and even the smart hotel room, in which voice commands can arrange everything from a wake-up time (with gentle blue lighting) to music or blinds being opened. Visitors can even select what artwork they’d like to have on the walls. The truth is, it’s not the hotel speaking, but the guest, and that’s essential to recognise since your guest must still have the facility to provide feedback.

These kinds of experiences reduce the need for human interactions, but not entirely – behind the scenes, a dedicated team will be monitoring and actioning anything that needs to get done. The team is as important to the execution of such a strategy as the solutions, since the team can work in response to insights derived from data, as well as emotional responses to challenges that the visitor may have. In short, the technology is there to enhance what is, at its heart, a very human experience.

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