With all the disruptive technologies promising to revolutionise the travel industry -- biometrics, blockchain, virtual reality, predictive analytics and supersonic planes, to name a few -- it can be hard to separate hype from reality. A few innovations, like biometric fingerprint and iris scanning, have already started to stick, while only time will tell if newer concepts, like virtual reality, will move past the hype phase.
A clear rising star in the tech landscape: Artificial and predictive intelligence. Findings from OAG’s new travel tech report, based on a survey of more than 2,000 leisure and business travellers, show the outlook for AI adoption is extremely positive. The technology has tremendous potential for streamlining the end-to-end travel experience:
- More than half (60 percent) of all travelers and 72 percent of millennials said using AI to predict flight cancellations and delays would be valuable on the day-of-travel.
- 73 percent of all travelers and 89 percent of millennials said using AI to predict flight pricing during the booking process would positively impact their travel endeavors.
- 26 percent of all travelers said AI-based travel booking and itinerary management systems would improve their travel experience.
Business travellers’ appetite for AI makes complete sense -- convenience, efficiency, and reliability rule their worlds, and artificial intelligence technology delivers against these needs with higher levels of predictability.
On a broader level, today’s passengers care more about on-time performance than ever before. So much so, that according to our survey, an airline’s on-time performance, along with travel providers’ ability to predict delays and cancellations, may start to impact the booking process – from which airline a traveller chooses (assuming all other factors are similar) to where they purchase the ticket.
While AI is not as pervasive or traveller-facing within the industry today as biometrics, which has been implemented globally and is already showing promising results, the technology holds tremendous potential for travel tech companies. We are already seeing more airports gravitate toward AI applications to help travellers find gates and answer questions about the airport’s restaurants and shops, and many airlines are using AI-powered tools to help customer service teams better cater to passengers.
Beyond the hype and media intrigue, AI makes business sense. Discover how new technologies like AI, biometrics and blockchain are gaining momentum and changing the travel experience.