Travel is increasingly becoming more concerned about depth rather than the breadth of experience as we keep experiencing places collaboratively, through our friends and peers. Technology is enhancing travel by layering information about history and culture over physical locations, enriching the experience of travel.
Technology will shape our experience in two distinctive ways
At the grass root level, it will help people make the most of an unfamiliar place. Intelligent translation services and augmented reality applications that educate us about the physical world around us are currently available in only a small number of areas and used only by a small number of people.
Over the next decade, however, improvements in both technology – for example, natural language processing – and the enabling infrastructure should significantly expand their use. There is a strong market for mobile devices as travel tools. The technologies rated most highly were those that tell you more in real-time about the world around you (including translation services) and help improve efficiency in transit.
Technology will be able to offer an alternative experience of a place/city/monument/location. AR and game based apps can make a difference at a qualitative level in travel.Through a simple camera in our smart phones a place can be seen from a completely different perspective. The REAL Appearance can be augmented by videos, photos & sounds. Even the past may be viewed through digital media!
Example: To see what the monument was like in old times – Red Fort in 1947, Gwalior Fort in its Prime condition.
Experiential Apps on social media platforms can provide the much needed engagement in the OTA besides just the hard selling of deals and promotions. Plan out your trip within the app on your preferred social media platform and get suggestions on which places to visit, shopping points, hotel reviews etc. from friends who have been there, all under one connected app which utilizes your connections and their respective travel check-ins.
There are also some innovative hotels which give perks to their customers on check ins and tweets. Specific online profiles and portals were set up to interface with customers, often providing a shortcut to customer service and more personalized support. Delta Air Lines was one of the first pioneers in this field, launching the @DeltaAssist Twitter feed, allowing a user to book hotel rooms totally through Twitter, hence removing the need for an online booking portal. According to USA Today, users need to only tweet to @Loews_hotels and use the hashtag #bookloews for an online agent to respond to the tweet and sort out the details. When a rate and dates are settled, the booking agent will send over a secure form for credit card processing.
Nowadays, you’re much more likely to use mobile apps or websites if you can book and pay in three taps rather than keying in a 16-digit credit card number with your thumbs! Also fueling the boom is the maturation of the social generation. As young adults born in the digital and mobile age graduate out of school and enter the mainstream economy, they’re bringing a mobile-first mentality to online booking and travel.