Game-changing Technology That Will Change The Way You Travel
Constant developments in the tech industry are changing the way we live, work, play, and travel. For example, data from Statista shows that 42% of UK holiday-goers use online bookings as a key tool in their travels. Online bookings help connect travellers to hotels and flight tickets, making travel planning a much easier endeavour than it used to be.
In the past years, we saw tech employed mainly by large-scale travel entities. These resulted in services and offerings that made travelling easier and more convenient, such as online bookings.
Recently, Manchester-based travel agency Travel Counsellors acquired Planisto for the Belgium-based tech platform to help the company build "highly complex" travel itineraries and present them intuitively to consumers.
The acquisition is meant to help strengthen the company's talent and tech while accelerating the development roadmap for its digital platform, Phenix, which aims to boost the customer booking experience.
However, innovations in the tech industry have also helped bring next-gen technologies closer to consumers, enhancing their travel experience. Below, we'll be looking at some of the game-changing technologies that are transforming the way we travel:
QR and digital payments
When countries across the globe first showed signs of interest in building potentially cashless societies, they were met with concerns from the travel industry, as this may lead to payments and transactions being inaccessible to travellers who may not have the right cards or hardware to support them.
However, digital and cashless payments have evolved quickly in recent years. Today, nearly 40% of survey respondents prefer paying via apps such as Google Pay or Apple Pay rather than physical credit cards.
Meanwhile, 18% of respondents said they are comfortable using QR codes for menu browsing and restaurant payments over a mobile device. QR codes have since caught on in many bars and restaurants, making them a viable alternative for locations that may not have support for mobile payment apps.
This makes payments and transactions a much easier task for travellers who may not want to carry a lot of cash or are wary of bad conversion rates for foreign currencies.
Apple's solution to securing luggage and valuables
Lost, damaged, or delayed luggage is a common problem that frequent travellers face. According to a SITA report, over 26 million bags were mishandled in 2022, compared to 9.9 million in 2021. To make matters worse, some airlines have worse reputations for lost luggage than others.
Fortunately, Apple's proprietary tracking device, the Apple AirTag, could be the solution people need. Designed to act as a key finder, the AirTag can be tracked using Apple devices to help people find personal objects, including stolen luggage.
Most recently, an Apple AirTag helped a US family track their stolen luggage taken from a North Carolina airport. While the ordeal resulted in them losing most of the items in the bag, they were able to find the person responsible and have authorities handle the issue.
Beyond lost or stolen luggage, however, the AirTag can help you keep track of your items while travelling.
Documenting your travels
Another smart travel accessory you may want to consider is wearable cameras. Today, cameras don't just fit on smartphones and tablets. Ray-Ban's latest smart glasses collaboration with Meta houses a built-in ultrawide 12MP camera that allows its wearers to capture images and video hands-free.
Another neat feature is its live streaming capability, allowing you to stream your travel videos in first-person to Instagram and Facebook.
Of course, there are other ways you can easily and quickly share and capture your travel memories on the go these days.
For example, drone cameras have become popular for capturing expansive, birds-eye views of beautiful landscapes. Like smart glasses, most of these can be connected to your smartphone via WiFi or other means, allowing you to control them remotely without going elbow-to-elbow with fellow tourists.
Smarter and more intuitive customer service
Finally, another common problem among travellers today includes flight delays, cancellations, and overbookings. Thankfully, tech is pivotal in helping travellers and airlines navigate these disruptions.
In a previous post, we covered the importance of flight delay compensation tools in addressing problems like delays and cancelled flights.
These tools use automated systems and machine learning algorithms to help passengers receive instant updates about their flights while helping airlines proactively offer compensation or alternate arrangements.
Data analytics are also crucial to enabling more intuitive customer service, as airlines can predict and manage potential delays and communicate them to passengers accordingly.
Thanks to technology, instead of long-winded paperwork, travellers could also handle these issues via simplified online forms, making the filing process for compensations and other arrangements much more user-friendly.
Jenny Kakoudakis likes to blog about travel. She launched the award-winning Seasons in Colour in 2014. When she is not chasing criminals out of the financial system (her day job), she gets creative by redecorating her own home.
Rent her traditional stone villa Ethia on the island of Crete for your dream holiday in Greece.