Skift Travel News Blog

Short stories and posts about the daily news happenings around the travel industry.

Travel Technology

Ryanair and Lonely Planet Involved in New $100 Million AI Program by Amazon Web Services

8 months ago

The airline Ryanair and travel guide publisher Lonely Planet are taking part in a new $100 million program by Amazon Web Services to explore innovations in generative AI.

AWS announced the Generative AI Innovation Center on Thursday with four partners, which also include sales tech company Highspot and communications platform Twilio.

AWS said it is starting the program to connect its own AI and machine learning experts with client business to help them develop new generative AI products, services, and processes.

Chris Whyde, senior vice president of engineering and data science at Lonely Planet, said in a statement that — a common goal among companies looking to use generative AI for travel planning. 

“We are always looking for ways to tap into new technology and meet the demands of today’s travelers,” Whyde stated. “The AWS Generative AI Innovation Center, paired with expert-driven advice and Lonely Planet’s award-winning content, will enable us to provide more personalized travel recommendations, making travel more accessible for those around the world.”

The program will operate through workshops and other engagements to help AWS customers throughout the process of designing the best generative AI models for their businesses and implementing them at scale, the company said.

“The Generative AI Innovation Center is part of our goal to help every organization leverage AI by providing flexible and cost-effective generative AI services for the enterprise, alongside our team of generative AI experts to take advantage of all this new technology has to offer,” Matt Garman, senior vice president of sales, marketing, and global services at AWS, state in a statement. “Together with our global community of partners, we’re working with business leaders across every industry to help them maximize the impact of generative AI in their organizations, creating value for their customers, employees, and bottom line.”


Lonely Planet on Summer Travel: Cope, Don’t Cancel

2 years ago

You’ve seen and heard the horror stories of travel plans gone awry in May and June, and now Lonely Planet is stepping up with advice for travelers that skittish travel businesses would welcome: “DO NOT let the threat of a cancellation keep you home. It’s been a long pandemic. It’s time to get out there again.”

Madrid Airport
File photo of Madrid Airport. Unsplash.

In an email, Lonely Planet said that is the counsel from its editor-at-large, Sebastian Modak.

Among Modak’s tips:

  • Research a specific flight’s past performance to see if it is prone toward delays and cancellations.
  • Be on the lookout for news about endless security lanes and baggage gone missing.
  • Think about doing domestic trips instead of traveling abroad.
  • Try not to avoid holiday or even weekend travel.
  • Consider alternative airports that may not be as popular.
  • In the U.S., consider Amtrak, which has increased its schedules, instead of flying.

Meanwhile, with all of the angst out there because of disrupted travel plans, online travel company Hopper reported that purchases of its flight protection products, which provide certain safeguards to thwart delays, cancelled flights or missed connections, jumped 28 percent over the last month.

On the other hand, in China, where Covid lockdowns have been intense, staycations in local hotels have become a trend. That might not be a bad idea for the less-adventurous among us.