In a recent survey undertaken with other industry players, Amadeus says the fragmentation in services options is contributing to traveller frustration.
To succeed and ensure customer retention, loyalty and revenue growth, travel sellers will have to change the way they make their offerings available to both leisure and business travellers.
The use of technology, especially mobile, will play a big role in this, Amadeus stressed in a recent study. Some 45% of travellers say their mobile browser is the first place they go to discover what’s out there and 41% also use it to book their destination service.
Some 27% identify having to use multiple apps as the number one frustration when searching for ancillary destination services.
Amadeus found that around 25% of respondents book destination services the day before travel, en route or once they have arrived at their destination.
Nearly all (93%) of respondents now consider ancillary destination services to be an important part of their overall travel experience, with 40% of these believing specifically that ancillary destination services make their trips more productive and enjoyable.
Yet, a quarter of travellers say they lack the time to properly evaluate what is available or plan when and how to do things during their trip, with 17% being unable to easily access destination services upon arrival.
Businesses and leisure travellers have similar values but different priorities. The top three business traveller priorities: flight compensation, taxi transfers and airport/rail lounges. And for leisure travellers, attractions & amenities, flight compensation and dining are most important.
For those typically booking three or more ancillary destination services, 34% say they do so primarily for leisure trips, while around 10% book the same amount for a business trip.
Overall, around 72% of travellers say they are very receptive to receiving proactive suggestions about related destination services, while a third say complementary services “truly enhance their trip experience”.
Mobile may be the solution to improving destination services, but mobile solutions have to be wielded right to manoeuvre the fine line separating timely and intrusive updates.
During the “discovering” stage of their holiday planning, only 5% of travellers want push notifications.
After booking the trip, the demand for push notifications increases, peaking at 93% of survey respondents saying they would welcome receiving information about other complementary services or offers when they book an ancillary destination service.
Another point of frustration is in the area of accessibility and inclusivity.
Among adults with disabilities who travelled by air, 72% have encountered major obstacles with airlines and 65% with airports. There are three specific areas travel providers must consider improving for travellers with health conditions or impairments.
Apart from considering the different ways to communicate relevant information (such as voice services, vibration, touch and visual displays), the use of AI and analytics can also play a role in knowing travellers’ specific needs throughout the journey in advance and helping meet those needs.
Meanwhile, 18% of travellers desire better coordinated access to destination services across apps, chat, web and voice. Travellers are just beginning to open up to the possibilities of voice search with less than 5% saying that they search for destination services using voice recognition technology such as Alexa, Siri or Google.