Every week we post hundreds of stories across various sectors in travel, connecting the dots across various global trends, and in these weekend posts we highlight the stories that tackle these trends. This one looks at top digital trends. For all of our trends roundups, go here.
>> Hotel guests want basic services expedited on mobile: 10 Mobile Features That Travelers Most Want From Hotels
Although the majority of hotels are behind airlines when it comes to digital customer service, hotels have a significantly larger opportunity to improve customers’ experience via mobile. It is a matter of how and when, not if, mobile will change almost every part of guests’ hotel stays.
>> Online travel sites use URLs to top competition: The Multi-Country Sites Strategy For Online Travel Brands: A Deep Dive
When launching a new country site, companies have to consider the signals they are sending at the local level versus resource allocation.
>> Travel reviews are only means to an end, AKA booking: TripAdvisor Pushes for In-App Hotel Bookings But Faces Resistance
It is almost impossible to imagine that TripAdvisor wouldn’t find an online travel agency partner for a Book TripAdvisor option within its mobile apps, but lots of the usual suspects are wary about TripAdvisor getting closer to the transaction part of the travel cycle, and getting even more powerful in the process.
>> Competition makes some travel brands obsolete: These Are the 5 Things That Killed Travelocity
To borrow an immortal line … There is no joy in Mudville — mighty Travelocity has struck out.
>> Social lets travel brands communicate with consumers in real time: The 11 Tourism Boards That Use Twitter Like a Real-Time Concierge
Destinations should be heavily investing in real-time social engagement to build brand awareness, improve visitors’ experiences, and share meaningful content that fuels inspiration. Destinations that don’t are missing out.
>> Personalization will play a critical role in the future of travel search: Skift Global Trend for 2014: Curation Is Coming To Travel Listings
Expect a lot more intelligence to come into the listings business, both a mix of using data to personalize, and smaller form-factors like mobile taking off.
>> U.S. parks try to remain relevant with today’s digital travelers: U.S. Parks Appeal to Modern-Day Travelers with Mobile Apps
The apps have real utility outside of a simple marketing tool. They are built so that travelers can have access to the information they’re used to even when offline.
>> Airlines accept in-flight Wi-Fi as part of the new industry standard: El Al to Launch In-Flight Wi-Fi on Select European Routes Within One Year
ViaSat claims it has the fastest in-flight Wi-Fi available and raising the standard for service in European skies will effectively force other carriers to speed up their service. The El Al deal is one way for ViaSat to kickstart market penetration outside of the U.S.
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Photo credit: A customer logs on to Starwood Hotels & Resorts' mobile app. PlaceIt.net