Travel Booking Trends 2021
Author: Thandiwe Dube
Tourism is one of the businesses most impacted by the COVID-19, which is one of the main reasons why the industry as a whole will try to innovate in order to attract more tourists in 2021. Some have already begun, while others will do so throughout the course of the year.
But it isn't just the industry that will change; tourist behaviours will as well. All of these factors will influence our selection on where to go and where to stay. As a result, businesses that rely on tourism must plan for and be prepared for these changes. Prior to covid, we had seen how dependent people were on third party intermediates to get their bookings done, but we have seen an increase in the speed of tech adoption in the tourism industry. Technology has become the new norm.
Technology, like practically every other industry, is providing the tourism industry with apparently limitless options. Here are some of the technological advancements and trends that will shape the tourist industry.
The days of making a phone call, speaking directly with a service provider, or walking into a supplier's office for face-to-face negotiating are long gone. Online bookings have increased as a result of digitization. Not only has this reduced the cost of advertising for travel companies, but customers are increasingly appreciating and preferring the ease it provides.
Companies that provide tours and activities have gradually integrated technology and online booking. In 2019, 71 percent of the operators polled said they used reservation technology in their firms, up from only 25% in 2010. Furthermore, these businesses grew at a faster rate and were more profitable.
As we draw closer to the post-COVID era, automation in the sector is only going to increase. So, as you fight to reclaim profitability, take advantage of the tourism trend and set up the appropriate technology to improve your chances of a faster recovery.
Technology, like practically every other industry, is providing the tourism industry with apparently limitless options. According to a McKinsey poll, “companies have expedited the digitalization of their customer and supply-chain interactions, as well as their internal operations, by three to four years” as a result of COVID-19.
“Operators report that 2 in 5 online bookings are made on mobile devices. These smartphone shoppers are also more valuable to your business because of the following reasons:
- They spend 50% more on tours and activities per trip.
- They average 2.9 tours per trip.
- They are twice as likely to leave online reviews”
It is believed that 49% of tour and activity bookings are on mobile. By using an online booking system, you're covered on any device. Your online booking process will be mobile-optimised and ready for bookings wherever they are.
Self-check-in is also another tech service which has been adopted by accommodation and airline providers as part of their technological advancements. With a good PMS system and channel manager, you can offer this amazing service to customers. Only approximately 50% of hotels in the world have specialized channel managers to assist them to automate, manage, and improve their online distribution. If your hotel is considering a channel manager and PMS system, please feel free to contact our Go4IT Africa team for a quote.