It is an open secret that players across the travel industry are looking to emulate the leaders of online retail, as customers start to expect the same level of personalization and service sophistication from every transaction, regardless of industry.
NB: This is a viewpoint from Adnan Saulat, general manager and travel industry specialist at Mindtree.
As customer adoption of digital technologies continues to accelerate, cross-pollination of ideas on how to serve these customers is also gaining momentum across industries.
Peering into the near future, it is both interesting and useful to look at trends in retail and banking, and to speculate on the ways in which we could adopt and adapt these for the travel industry.
The ‘Points-for-Purchases’ model has become commonplace and does not excite consumers (passengers) the way it used to. Loyalty programmes today reward shoppers for their actions and engagement rather than just purchases, so consumers are getting more sophisticated in what they expect from these, at the same time that some in the travel industry are making it harder to get points and rewards.
We believe that airlines in particular will have to rethink their approach to these, especially as consumers start to demand that the whole process be expedited to deliver more immediate gratification.