Travel Technology: Mobile First, Not Mobile Only
Posted by Mike Atherton on 13 October, 2016
Planning and delivering a TMC travel app and mobile strategy has been one of the most high-profile topics in travel technology over the last few years. The GDSs, booking tools and 3rd party technology providers have invested heavily in mobile, along with several agencies building their own apps.
The Role of AI in Mobile
During the panel session at this year’s GBTA Convention in Denver, a question was raised in relation to mobile development: “Will AI in mobile replace the online booking tool?". The large majority of answers from the panel either said no, not yet or not for some time, based on the complexity of corporate travel.
However, with all this focus on mobile-only strategies and AI, there is a danger that it will over shadow what's most important: the 360-degree traveller experience.
Taking a Comprehensive Approach to Business Travel
A mobile-only strategy ignores the needs of other important stakeholders in business travel, such as the client and the travel arranger. For both, there are other channels that are equally important. Travel documents, invoicing, online and portal channels are all part of the process of supporting the traveller.
Without taking these roles into consideration, the TMC risks offering a fragmented post booking service that alienates the people who make the bookings, as well as those that pay for them.
The most effective TMC strategy provides a mobile-first, multi-channel support to their clients, travel arrangers and travellers. This support would include document delivery, online itinerary, portal and of course, a great mobile service. Utilising a common infrastructure and data set enables the TMC to provide a coordinated, consistent, and comprehensive travel itinerary experience. This gives the traveller access to their information when and where they want, knowing that the people who support them are seeing the same thing.
To learn more about the benefits of adopting a mobile strategy for business travel and how to do it, please download our mobile strategy guide for TMCs.