Weekly Roundup #39: Travel, Tech and Social Media

Week 39/2017

Welcome back to another Weekly Roundup! Another week has quickly gone by and we hope you had a good one! Now it’s time to go through a short summary of what went on in hospitality and travel, so make sure to check out the latest news and stories.

Until next Friday, enjoy your weekend!

Industry News

Thomas Cook buys 42% stake in resort firm Aldiana:

Thomas Cook announced this week that it has entered into a strategic partnership with LMEY Investments, a Swiss-based hotel property development company, to develop and grow Thomas Cook's own-brand hotel portfolio. As part of the new partnership, Thomas Cook has acquired from LMEY a 42% stake in Aldiana, a premium club and activity-focused tour operator and hotel management company based in Germany. Aldiana currently operates eight club resorts located in Spain, Greece, Cyprus, Tunisia and Austria, with plans to open another four resorts over the next two years. It attracts a loyal base of primarily family customers who enjoy activity holidays in premium-quality resorts.

Trivago Turns to AI as Travelers Increasingly Book Directly:

This week hotel booking site Trivago announced it had purchased tripl, a personalization technology firm, in a move that could help the service remain competitive in a sector where sales appear to be slowing. Founded in 2015 in Hamburg, Germany, tripl developed an algorithm that provides tailored travel recommendations by drawing data from users’ social media. In a press statement, Trivago said that tripl’s artificial intelligence-driven technology “imitates the way a travel agent would recommend hotel experiences relevant to the customer and combines it with the ease of online services.” tripl’s technology could be helpful in reigniting Trivago’s business in regions such as Europe and Asia-Pacific, where the share of hotel lodging sales made by online travel agents (OTAs) might have peaked.

Bangkok emerges as world’s top destination once again:

Bangkok has taken the top spot for the third year running in the Mastercard Global Destinations Cities Index, released September 26. With 19.41 million international visitors last year, Bangkok remains the favorite global destination especially among leisure travelers who made up 88.6% of the total, according to the survey. For the first time in three years, Singapore edged out New York City for the fifth position with 13.11 million visitors.

Trends and Insights

How to Properly Reply to Negative Reviews:

At TrustYou, we always focus our marketing efforts on helping hoteliers make the most out of their business and reputation. We know that coming face to face with negative guest reviews is not exactly a dream come true… but hey, it happens. This is why we put together this best practice guide that will help hoteliers ensure that they give out the best possible management response to a not-so-great review. The best practice is available for free download on our website, so go ahead and take a look!

U.S. Millennial Travelers Are Relaxed, Romantic and Embrace #YOLO:

New U.S. generational data released today by Expedia Media Solutions, the advertising arm of Expedia, Inc., shows that American travelers are deal-driven explorers, and Millennials embrace the ‘you only live once’ (#YOLO) mentality, take risks and focus on crossing things off their bucket list, while Gen X prefers relaxing trips and visiting family. The findings, from a survey conducted by Northstar Research Partners, illustrate broad U.S. travel trends as well as the distinct shopping habits, influences and motivations of travelers across four generations, including Generation Z, Millennials, Generation X and Baby Boomers.

Two thirds of people prefer to book their holidays online:

Only a fifth of people prefer to book holidays in person through a travel agent, new research reveals. Two thirds of consumers are choosing to buy holidays online, with a fifth booking over the phone and the same proportion with an agent. Consumers want travel brands to provide value for money (59%), as well as ease of use (58%) and good customer services (58%), according to research conducted by the Direct Marketing Association, with partners Emarsys, Epsilon, Feefo and Wiraya.

Technology

Expedia launches Collections - the best hotels for every experience:

Expedia has launched Collections, a new resource to help travellers find the best hotels for every experience. Initially launching with six Collections; Beach, Relaxation, Family Fun, Culture & History, Shopping and Snow, each list has been curated and each hotel selected with Expedia's 'stamp' of quality approval. Knowing that a source of anxiety for travellers can be whether the travel experience will live up to expectation, all hotels in each Collection must meet a set of rigorous standards, and are determined using a combination of data sources to reveal the best quality and best value hotels in spectacular destinations. Travellers can browse accommodations by the type of travel experience they desire and by destination, making finding a great place to stay easier than ever.

Mobile Tech is Key for Hotels Looking to Engage Millennial Guests:

In the last few decades, smartphones have changed our lives. Hospitality industry experts say that it is vital for hotels to use mobile tech to properly cater to millennial guests, which are key to success in the current global hospitality market. Statistics bear out the importance of mobile in this day and age, with recent studies showing that 95 percent of Americans own a mobile phone of some kind, with the vast majority of 77 percent owning a smartphone. Globally, those numbers are closer to 66 percent owning a mobile phone and about 50 percent using a smartphone. Simply put, mobile tech is not a trend. It's here to stay as a major influencer in our lives. You can get an insight into what this means for hotel owners and operators in this post.

JNTO launches “Japan Official Travel App”:

Japan National Tourism Organization (JNTO) launched the Japan Official Travel App, the new app for overseas tourists in Japan. The free app aims to make traveling in Japan hassle-free for visitors and provides: Tourist information; Public transport route guidance; Free Wi-Fi spot and ATM locations; A listing of hospitals that support foreign languages; Safety alerts for natural disasters; Restaurant listings; Luggage forwarding and storage locations; Duty-free store locations. JNTO will continue to expand the content within the app to include information on rural areas, with the aim of bolstering regional tourism.

Laura Badiu

Laura is a passionate bookworm and a gifted writer. Since joining TrustYou’s marketing team, she has embraced topics in the travel and hospitality sector with enthusiasm. Using her degree in Journalism, Laura creatively weaves words into insightful stories with a focus on reputation management.

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