Weekly Roundup #10: Travel, Tech and Social Media
The Weekly Roundup marks the end of another busy and productive week in hospitality and we’ve got the news to prove it. As always, we gathered the most exciting stories that were recently published and summarized them for you. Go ahead and check them out and until the next roundup, don’t forget to follow us on social media: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram - ITB Berlin kept our social accounts quite busy this week!
Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!
Our client Accor has launched midscale lifestyle brand, Tribe, as the hotel group bulks up its portfolio of alternative accommodations in response to guest demand. Tribe will consist of funky, stripped-down lodgings targeted at regular travelers in urban areas, with its first location in Perth, Australia, according to a press release Monday. The rooms are promising to be stylish and spacious, offering the basics like free coffee and under-bed storage, but not much else. The hotel group acquired the brand from Australian hotel developers Mark and Melissa Peters, who founded it in 2017. The couple will remain owners of the original Perth location.
China, South-East Asia, and the Tours & Activities sector are strategic growth markets for the TUI Group. TUI and Ctrip, the leading Chinese online provider, have recently agreed on a strategic partnership. Ctrip's 200 million monthly users will have direct access to the tours and activities offered by TUI's subsidiary Musement. TUI recently acquired the Milan-based technology Startup Musement and intends to expand it into the world's leading digital platform for activities and excursions. The steadily growing number of Chinese holidaymakers will increasingly be provided with tailor-made offers at their holiday destinations.
Nearly one year after TripAdvisor launched Sponsored Placements for accommodations that subscribe to its Business Advantage program, the platform is opening the opportunity to all accommodation providers. Now any hotelier or accommodation provider that shares rates and availability on TripAdvisor can pay for better positioning. With a paid ad, properties that have availability and match a guest’s search criteria are displayed in high-visibility areas such as above search results, on local competitors' pages and on other high-profile shopping pages across all devices.
Trends and Insights
In 2018, the number of outbound trips increased by 5.5 percent, resulting in 1.4 billion international trips. Hence, once again tourism is a key growth driver of the global economy, which “only” grew by 3.7 percent in comparison. Growth is coming from all regions worldwide, also from the mature markets Europe and North America, but the strongest gains came from Asian and Latin American markets. For 2019, considering a slowing world economy, also a slightly lower growth rate is expected for international travel. Overtourism could become another growing problem for the tourism industry, with more and more international travelers feeling the effect of overcrowded destinations.
The 2019 Euromonitor International report highlighted the megatrends that are shaping the future of travel in India. It said that the region continues to enjoy strong performances in both inbound and outbound travel. Citing the increase in travel spends by Asians, the report said, positive geopolitical developments and sporting events boost the region’s attractiveness. As the next Summer Olympics, which is going to be held in Tokyo is around the corner, along with the next Winter Games in Beijing, there are high prospects of rapid growth in travel spends this year. Read more insights in the extended article.
The corporate business industry is an important component of the tourism industry and the economic development in destinations. This year, a general climate of economic stability, more direct flight options, and a robust international meetings sector will bring tremendous growth to the industry and generate millions in revenue. Driven by emerging technologies and shifting habits, corporate travel is experiencing a fundamental change in the way the traveler is served. You can explore in this article some of the most important travel trends predicted for 2019: personalization, the merger of business and leisure, experiences, robots, AI, self-booking, and more.
This week, Booking.com announced the launch of the new BookingSuite App Store. The BookingSuite App Store is a one-stop shop for Booking.com accommodation partners to find relevant software solutions for their property that they can implement in just a few clicks, including a free trial period for all products and services. It has been developed by BookingSuite, a division within Booking.com dedicated to providing software solutions that enable accommodation providers to grow their businesses online and deliver outstanding experiences for their guests.
The voice technology app by Google is forecast to claim almost 50% of the assistant market share by 2020. Google has already announced that people can now book hotel rooms through the Assistant on Android or iOS smartphones. Book On Google (BoG) is Google’s endeavor to enhance the user experience when searching for and booking flights and hotels. Launched in the U.S. in late-2015, in the U.K. in 2016, and available in most European countries since 2018, Book On Google makes it easier for users to book online with a more seamless booking process, through a Google-hosted site designed to minimize friction and drop off.