Technology have revolutionized every industry you can think of and travel is no different. Gone are the days when you have to go to a travel agent or book everything separately from hotels to airline tickets on your own. Today, everything is at your fingertips and you can easily book your entire with mobile apps without leaving the comfort of your home.
Do not get me wrong, we all love this transformation as it provides the convenience that most travelers are looking for. That does not mean that it is perfect or there are no loopholes or weaknesses in the online travel industry. Both the travel industry and travelers tend to ignore these weaknesses because the pros outweigh the cons.
In this article, you will learn about four weaknesses of online travel industry that they should overcome quickly to make traveling experience better for travelers.
1. Ignoring User Needs
The lines between business travel and leisure travel are blurring. The focus of traveling is slowly shifting towards self-discovery and cultural confluence. When you book your trips through your mobile apps, there is no human interaction involved. In today’s hyper connected tech world, this might not seem like a big deal.
That is why travel booking apps and websites tends to ignore the purpose of user travel. Let’s say you are going on a vacation to enjoy a marina dhow cruise Dubai dinner with your family or going on a solo trip, both have different purpose. When you don’t understand the purpose of travelers, how can you fulfill their needs. That is why your travel experience is much different when you book your trip through an agent as compared to when you book your trip online.
2. Lack of Customization Options
The days when travelers use to stick to rigid, time bound ternaries are long gone. Today, your plan might change every hour so you need flexibility with travel. Unfortunately, that is what you will not get from online booking apps. Traveler want complete control over their trip so they can mold their schedule as they want to. That is where good ol travel agent comes into play. Want to stay at a destination for longer to attend another business meeting? Just pick up your phone, call your travel agent and tell them everything about this sudden change in plan and he or she will cancel your flight and arrange a flight the day after you are schedule to fly. With online booking websites and apps, you are literally locked and can not change your plans on the fly.
3. Personalized Content
Every traveler is different and so are their needs. There is nothing called one size fit all especially when it comes to travel. As a business operating in online travel industry, you need to understand that and not only offer personalized offers and recommendation to travelers but before that you should offer them personalized content.
Yes, you will be hard pressed to find hyper targeted content in an online travel industry but that is an opportunity for you companies who are working in this niche that they are not making the most of yet. Online travel booking companies need to deliver content in such a way that it cut through the clutter to keep them engaged on your online booking website or app. The content should be relevant and solve travelers’ problems.
4. Scarcity of End to End Solution
If you analyze all the travel portals closely you will find that most of them are designed to reduce human intervention and offer traveler’s room for making changes to their trips. Unfortunately, there is still not an end to end solution that can help you manage everything from a single website or mobile app. You will surely find separate apps for hotel booking, airline ticket booking, rent a yacht in Dubai and transportation, but you will not find an app or website that can do it all.
This means that travelers must juggle multiple apps in order to manage their complete tour. Creating a platform that can prove to be a one stop shop for travelers can provide more convenience, save them a lot of time and prevent loss of interest amongst business travelers. This opens avenues for automation in travel industry.
Online booking apps needs to focus on planning, user friendly functionality, incorporate offline maps and use intelligent tools to make the traveling experience better.
What do you don’t like about online travel industry? Feel free to share it with us in the comments section below.