Travel managers’ relationship with – and use of – technology will continue to grow in 2020. It’s a fact that adopting any new, worthwhile technology requires time and patience. Challenges are inevitable. Nevertheless, it’s important that travel managers embrace the role that innovation plays in building strong travel programs. In fact, their organizations and travelers depend upon it.
Today’s business travelers are continually adopting new innovations in their personal lives. (Think: upgrading mobile phones, improving digital connections and adding devices to the Internet of Things.) In the same way at work, they expect their employers to provide them with the latest tools and technologies to perform their best while traveling on business. When travel managers embrace and leverage proven, business-building technologies, they reinforce their commitment to traveler wellbeing, which leads to greater employee retention, satisfaction and loyalty, cost savings, improved ROI – and much more.
For more than three decades, Amadeus has been leading the way in global travel technology innovation. Our business model is B2B, yet our primary focus has always been to put our customers (and their customers, the end–travelers) at the center of everything we do. Just as business travelers are influenced by the way they book leisure travel; they expect the same kind of experience when booking travel for their jobs.
Ultimately, we believe an innovative travel program will:
- Empower travelers with personalized results, i.e. address their needs by clearly understanding their histories, loyalties, requirements and preferences).
- Offer a seamless travel experience – The goal is to deliver a smooth journey, door–to–door, that starts with the initial booking all the way through to post-trip follow-up and reporting.
- Deliver no-stress travel by providing excellent duty of care, touchless expense reporting and programs that support traveler health and welfare.
At Amadeus, we understand that today’s travel managers are hard–pressed for time. Because they spend so much time running their programs, they need a technology partner who can help them anticipate the trends, evolve with the changes, and keep travelers connected and safe.
Here are 4 Amadeus innovations that can help business travel managers build stronger programs:
- Innovation that de-stresses travel. The Amadeus Traveler ID project reduces frustration through a single digital identity that eliminates the need for travelers to repeatedly show ID documents at every turn, i.e. at booking, check-in, baggage drop, security, airport lounge, flight boarding and hotel check-in. Biometric screening (including facial and document recognition) speeds up the process from beginning to end, making travel less stressful and more enjoyable.
- Innovation that eases “expense angst.” A top trend for 2020 is the rise of the “super app,” a single app containing multiple apps. Our flagship online booking tool, Amadeus cytric Travel & Expense, lets travelers do everything in one place: make bookings, changes and upgrades, get itineraries – and more. Travelers can submit expenses on-the-go by scanning and uploading receipts right from their phones. This “super app” gives business travel managers a complete view of their travelers’ behavior so they can better manage travel policy and enable the best purchasing decisions.
- Innovation that delivers peace of mind. Amadeus Mobile Messenger uses risk monitoring technology to evaluate potential disruptive incidents, track impacted travelers, and automatically communicate with them during key events. If a traveler doesn’t have a smartphone, Amadeus Mobile Messenger can send an SMS or email instead. In today’s ever-changing world, providing peace of mind to business travelers has never been more important.
- Innovation that simplifies everything. Amadeus is continually exploring new ways to leverage the power of emerging technologies like AI to better serve travelers, including chatbots for booking, support and disruption management. We are using AI to develop a recommendation engine that provides hyper-contextualized services. AI can also help us better predict and recover from disruptions, ultimately helping reduce stress during travel. And there’s so much on the horizon regarding the potential of Natural Language Processing and cognitive services to book flights and hotels. Again, our goal is to leverage the power of innovation to create a uniquely personalized experience for every traveler.
Taking the next step
It’s clear that to stay ahead, travel managers must place a priority on learning all they can about emerging technologies and innovation in travel. A great way to do this is to work with a technology partner who can help you navigate the changes. At Amadeus, travel technology is our forte. We are committed to embracing and investing in cutting-edge technologies – and partnering with our customers and industry players to serve travelers better … together … one journey at a time.