Inside Travel: Understanding the latest technology and industry trend insights

Find it hard to keep track with all the latest insights into business trends, new products and technology advancements in the travel sector? The Blue Swan Daily provides you with an update on some of the key stories from the past week.

  • Hotels can not survive without online bookings, and aggregator sites yield massive power
  • Amadeus and Visa’s CyberSource join forces to tackle fraud and friction in the travel arena
  • Radisson Hotel Group rolls-out first stage of its new global responsible business training programme
  • Unforgettable Croatia builds new itinerary to take cruise travellers off-grid and tackle overtourism in Croatia
  • PATA and Binumi strengthen organisational partnership

Hotels can not survive without online bookings, and aggregator sites yield massive power

A new survey from Agenda.Video, the first internet video production company for hotels, questioning 2,300 travellers about their behaviour and preferences when booking their travel accommodation has reinforced the view that customer behaviour in the travel industry is rapidly changing. The findings of its research show that 75% of people now book hotels online just 15% book hotels directly via phone or email and only 10% still use a travel agent. Out of those who book online, 40% used booking.com, 20% – hotels.com and 12% – other aggregator sites. Only 21% of those who booked online did it directly on the hotel website. This confirms the opinion that that hotels can not realistically survive without online bookings, and aggregator sites are yielding increasing power. Nevertheless, those hotels that promoted their sites and achieved direct online bookings saved on 15% commission paid to the aggregators and managed to build direct relationship with customers, the survey highlights. Other insights are that search, booking.com and hotel’s own site are used by more than half for bookings; for 70% of people location is very important ahead of price and hotel’s facilities.


Amadeus and Visa’s CyberSource join forces to tackle fraud and friction in the travel arena

Amadeus has collaborated with CyberSource, Visa’s payment management platform, to offer the global travel industry a range of advanced fraud and payment management capabilities. The agreement equips the global travel ecosystem with the capability to deliver Strong Customer Authentication (SCA) and protect against fraud, without compromising on payment experience. The European Central Bank estimates Europe suffers from EUR1.3 billion euros in online card fraud each year and is why the Payment Services Directive 2 (PSD2) and the Regulatory Technical Standards (RTS) mandate SCA and the introduction of two-factor authentication for most electronic payments made in the European Economic Area (EEA). From the outset, this collaboration will help travel merchants prepare for SCA, reduce fraud risk, and minimise the potential impact on customer experience with the introduction of two-factor authentication. It combines CyberSource’s payment, authentication and fraud management capabilities, backed by more data and advanced machine learning.


Radisson Hotel Group rolls-out first stage of its new global responsible business training programme

Radisson Hotel Group announced the introduction of its new global responsible business training programme, Living and Leading Responsible Business. Set to be rolled out worldwide over the next 16 months, the new programme will give team members the tools they need to drive standards and best practices, says the company. As part of its five-year strategic plan, a global and cross-departmental team has revamped the existing responsible business training programme, which was first launched in 2001. It is the first time that the training programme has had global alignment across the group’s 1,100+ hotels in operation, delivering consistent knowledge levels and action on topics such as carbon footprint reduction, water savings, meaningful community engagement and tackling modern slavery. The new Responsible Business training program consists of two pillars: Living Responsible Business and Leading Responsible Business. The Living Responsible Business pillar is a classroom training covering topics such as ethics, diversity, inclusion, community support, eco-footprint reduction, and sorting waste – as well as more sensitive topics like tackling sex trafficking and forced labour. Meanwhile, the Leading Responsible Business is a comprehensive and engaging e-learning tool with a target-driven and interactive approach covering topics such as eco-footprint reduction, youth employability, responsible recruitment and sourcing and promoting human rights.


Unforgettable Croatia builds new itinerary to take cruise travellers off-grid and tackle overtourism in Croatia

Small cruise specialists Unforgettable Croatia have implemented their own steps to help the overtourism issue in Croatia.  The luxury travel company have launched a brand new cruise itinerary on a small-ship accommodating just 38 passengers that will take guests away from the crowded medieval centres of Split and Dubrovnik, as part of their sustainable cruising initiative. The cruise will depart from Opatija in the north of Croatia, visiting a number of undiscovered Croatian islands as well as the Istrian Peninsula. In the first six months of 2019, 272 cruise journeys docked around Croatia, with over 85% of these docking at either Dubrovnik or Split.


PATA and Binumi strengthen organisational partnership

The Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA), a not-for-profit membership association acting as a catalyst for the responsible development of the Asia Pacific travel and tourism industry, has bolstered its partnership with Binumi, a video ecosystem platform empowering individuals and businesses to create and share compelling video content that can build opportunity and growth for their business. Through the newly formed content partnership PATA will work together with Binumi to develop more robust video communications as well as a video marketing strategy, allowing the Association the ability to control and scale branded video content to its vast member network and beyond.