Travelling has always been popular and lead to numerous history-defining discoveries. And while interest towards opening new horizons stays the same, the way we travel keeps changing drastically due to many factors including constantly evolving tech trends. If previously adventurers needed many tools like maps, compasses, sextants and telescopes to successfully complete their journey, nowadays the only thing a wanderer needs is a mobile device or a laptop. A huge variety of apps and web platforms with all necessary functions made travelling easier than ever.
It can be said without doubt that travelling itself is a trend of this decade and it reached the peak of its popularity. If you open your newsfeed on Facebook or Instagram, the first thing you’ll see would not be advertising, it would definitely be a post about somebody’s traveling experience.
Such “wandering fever” offers numerous business opportunities not only to booking services, hotels and airlines, but also to all startupers and business owners who can provide travelers with an advanced application and gain a decent profit. Now, without further ado, let’s check out what latest tech novelties set new trends and what makes a good travelling app.
Key trends to apply to your travelling app
The latest couple of years brought numerous tech trends changing every business niche and travelling is not an exception. It doesn’t really matter what you do – own a hotel or a restaurant, offer transportation services, rent out apartments or cars – as long as you are involved in a sphere providing services to adventurers, you need a solution able to optimize all administrative processes and provide better user-experience. If you want to be on top and make your business profitable, then building a travelling app is for you.
But before you get started with thinking about various ideas, take a look at the list of the five best technology trends that will guide you towards the best creative decision and allow you to develop a top-notch travelling app.
- IoT (Internet of Things). This is a top trend of this decade. IoT is a unique system that not only allows to inter-connect numerous devices, it rather creates a unique ecosystem of them. Such technology offers a high level of personalization and users can easily control everything using one device only. F.e. during the flight users can receive a controller that will let them adjust the temperature of air conditioning or their seat. If IoT is utilized in a hotel, users can receive an electronic key and get registered without staying at the desk. It is even possible to control the whole apartment using one smart device. You probably remember the episode from the last “Home Alone” movie, when Kevin gets a controller from the smart house and can do literally everything starting with opening the doors and windows and ending with the lighting the fireplace. One great thing about IoT is that it contributes to energy efficiency in hotels. This technology due to its smart principles can measure room temperature and level of lightning and depending on the benchmarks disable or enable the heating, reduce or increase power of light. This leads to a decent financial benefit.
- VR (Virtual Reality). Everyone is aware of this trend because it is not quite new. However, if previously VR was used mainly for gaming and entertainment, now it has become a powerful business tool. VR interactive maps and hotel tours became more and more popular. Hotel owners tend to create videos with 360 room and territory tours, travel agencies offer adventurers to enjoy virtual sight-seeing tours before ordering real ones and planning the route. Such practice helps to improve customer service and especially it contributes to personalization. If a tour and a hotel are thoughtfully picked, then it is more likely that the customer will enjoy a trip and ask this travel agency for further services.
- AI (Artificial Intelligence). If a decade ago we all watched movies and were amazed how a person can effectively interact with a robot, now this all became a reality. Robotics offers a unique opportunity to replace information centres and charts with robot responses. Tourists can easily get necessary information without the need to read numerous papers. Robots with built-in speech recognition can answer all travelling related questions and guide the wanderer. Apart from robotics, there are other great things AI offers to businesses. Due to this technology hotels and travel agencies can collect and analyze the data regarding customers, their preferences and level of satisfaction with services. This allows to improve travel business efficiency and attract more clients in the future. One more great trend is to develop chatbots that are able to learn and add new useful data to the one already existing in the system. Chatbots offer fast responses to requests which all tourists like.
- Voice technology. Google states that more than 70% of users with the devices supporting voice control use it daily. Siri and Alexa are not new words in the technology world. Speech recognition and voice control offer a unique opportunity to do numerous things hands-free. Voice commands can be used for booking an apartment or a table at a restaurant, for managing the smart hotel room, for communicating with locals if a travelling person does not know a language. Speech is the most natural thing for all people, so contemporary apps should have an option allowing to speak instead of type.
- Big Data. This is one of the most important trends when it comes to all industries related to customer service. As personalization becomes top priority, there arises a necessity to collect and process huge loads of data. Travelers leave feedback about apartments, travel agencies, restaurants, various galleries and art centers, etc. If a company is able to collect and analyze that information, it can use it for further improvements and optimization of processes. F.e. having at your disposal information about prices that are acceptable for travelers and advertising they respond to, business companies can create new and better financial and marketing strategies to attract even more potential customers.
What is better – a web or mobile application?
Travelling is all about minimalism and new experiences. So when we speak about various helping tools, we should remember that tourists would prefer the ones that can be constantly at their disposal. No one will carry a laptop in a bag for the whole day while enjoying the views of a new city. Of course mobile apps are the most popular tools. So if you came up with an app idea, you’d better invest in developing an app for smartphones. However you should not neglect web platforms as well. It is better for any business efficiency to have both mobile and web presence. This attracts more customers and allows to make a set of basic functions better, wider and more useful.
F.e you can create a holistic travel platform, utilize third-party integrations and in this way let your users book tickets, choose hotel apartments or create a route without leaving your application. Such solutions are getting more and more popular because they save travelers time and money. Speaking about apps, it would be very useful to add features allowing to check public transportation (routes, prices, daily schedule), to pick the best places to eat and rest, to create custom city routes taking into account all visit-worthy sights.
The development of an application may cost you $30,000-60,000, but this sum should not scare you or make you give up your idea. Many development companies know how to make the best product and often apply speed to market strategies to make it a success. F.e. if you have a lot of functions in mind, there is no need to add all of them at once. Think about the best ones that are absent in apps of your competitors and create a unique solution. Choose developing an MVP and test whether your users are satisfied, whether your app can gain popularity and be monetized to bring you profit. In any case, if your travel app offers useful tips or in any way makes travelling easier, you can be sure that your audience will find you.
Travelling platforms & apps to take as an example
You’ve probably heard a lot of times about TripAdvisor. This is the most popular and holistic traveling platform many adventurers make use of. But this is not a one and only example you should take a look at. There are way more great web and mobile applications that are worthy of attention.
Expedia. This is, by far, one of the best solutions that has a web version and is also available on mobile devices running iOS and Android. This travelling platform cooperates with numerous brands worldwide and allows to organize all kinds of journeys starting from honeymoons and vacations and ending with business trips. With Expedia you can book flights, hotel apartments, cruises and even rent a car in advance. What is more exciting, it offers an opportunity to check out various events and even buy tickets at cheaper price and in such a way organize your leisure in a foreign country. You can also benefit from bundles, it is a kind of special offer when you choose several different services at once (book a flight + rent a car, etc.) and get a decent discount. This platform lets users leave an honest feedback about the services they used. Expedia is a great example of a holistic approach that leads to success on the market. Expedia annual revenue for 2019 was $11.879B.
Hopper. This is a startup that recently appeared on the market and became widely used. Although Hopper is an app for mobile devices only, its value skyrocketed from $100 million to $780 million in a short amount of time, which is quite impressive. This travelling solution uses AI which allows it to monitor, analyze and predict prices up to 12 months in advance. So all users can be sure that they will buy the tickets at the cheapest available price. Apart from price prediction one can overview hotels, then pick and book the desired one.
Evaneos. What can be better than an ability to explore a new country with a local? Evaneos is a unique web platform that provides such an opportunity to all adventurers. This French startup allows you to plan your single, friends, family or couple trip with the locals from the destination you choose. There are 160 destinations and more than 2 000 local agencies available. The community of users is huge. They share honest impressions regarding their trips and give great advice. By booking a trip with a local agent travelers can save money and visit the most interesting places. Evaneos gives all wanderers a chance to see the other side of the city they are visiting. You can even choose the activities you’d like to experience like safari, hiking, road tripping.
To sum it up
Travelling itself had been a big trend long before this word was even used. It will keep being popular for many years ahead but the approach to it will inevitably keep changing. Now when the technology is evolving and making significant strides it is impossible to ignore all innovations. If you catch the wave and offer travelers something fresh and unique, your business will definitely reach a new level.