The future of technology and travel is well on its way to introducing us to new ways of wandering the world. In an effort to continue to look at how technology might shape the future of travel, Amadeus commissioned a new study, “What If? Imagining the Future of the Travel Industry,” which explores the key disruptors likely to affect the travel industry in the next five to seven years.
These new developments might prove to be some of the most efficient — and well, just plain awesome — things we can hope to look forward to one day. Ideas like driverless cars, digital assistants like Siri and Alexa, new payment channels, big data and artificial intelligence are just a few things that will be exciting to see.
The study, undertaken by AT Kearney, analyzes different scenarios that might be our reality in the coming years. According to the report, two main themes stand out: the opportunity for seamless travel and demand for personalized travel experiences. In the future we have the possibility to simplify travel and personalize the experience for each customer with new advances.
Truly seamless travel requires inter-government cooperation and data sharing between businesses, from airports and airlines to hotels, restaurants, ground transport and other destination services. The growth of personalized travel experiences relies on technology to aggregate consumer data as well as artificial intelligence to mine that data and learn about behaviors to meet the needs of each individual traveler.
As with any prediction, there are positive and negative possibilities of the outcome. In the report, four scenarios are presented along with factors that could cause things to come together, or be disruptors hindering the “seamless and personalized” travel experience we’ll expect in the years to come. Each scenario explores different possibilities of how the future of travel might pan out, using comparisons from a few well-known painter’s themes:
- Fragmented – “Picasso” is cubist and fragmented nature. Global economic prosperity drives the growth of personalized travel offers, while growing nationalism and security concerns fragment the world and cause the industry to develop in a localized way.
- Innovative – “Dali” is more innovative, futuristic and even a little surreal. The Internet of Things makes the world even more connected, and artificial intelligence uses the vast amount of available data to push travel suggestions. Collaboration makes the industry more efficient, optimizing pricing and occupancy. Travel becomes cheaper, safer, and more efficient. There are fewer security controls and destination content is tailored to individual tastes.
- Standardized – “Bosch” is the darkest scenario. Innovation stagnates and the industry remains fragmented, limiting the scope for exploiting artificial intelligence. The current travel value chain and industry players are largely unaffected, with tech giants preferring to retain their existing position in the ecosystem.
- Curtailed – “Warhol” is all about standardization and commoditization. In this scenario, Asia is growing but the West stagnates, and consumers become more price sensitive. Innovation only flourishes locally because of strict privacy laws, limiting the scope for tech disruptors.
The future is unpredictable. Any one of these scenarios as well as others could be our near future. You can read more about possible future of travel and download the full study here.