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.

  • Three quarters of hospitality businesses have no formal digital transformation strategy
  • Six of the world’s top ten cities for international arrivals in 2018 were in Asia
  • VIKAND launches solutions to combat common hospitality industry challenges using its cruise experiences
  • Rugby World Cup set to change perception of Japanese culture
  • Hotelbeds insight highlights the rise of the Chinese traveller outside of Asia
  • Carnival Corporation to develop two new destination projects in The Bahamas

Three quarters of hospitality businesses have no formal digital transformation strategy

The hospitality industry should look to seize the opportunity to evolve its customer experience and meet the expectations of modern consumers, according to research from Adyen, a payments platform. A study, commissioned by Adyen and conducted by 451 Research, revealed that just one in four companies are implementing a formal digital transformation strategy. It found only 35% of hospitality businesses globally accept contactless payments and just 28% offer one-click purchasing on mobile devices.


Six of the world’s top ten cities for international arrivals in 2018 were in Asia

Tourism friendly policies, low cost connectivity and weak currencies played a vital role in attracting international visitors to Asia with six out of the top ten cities in terms of international visitor arrivals in 2018 were from the region, according to data and analytics company, GlobalData. Bangkok, Singapore, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Seoul and Shenzhen from Asia were among the top 10 destinations by international visitors in 2018. Greater London and Greater Paris from Europe, Dubai from Middle East and New York City from America were the other cities that featured in the top 10 list. Among the top 10 cities, Tokyo exhibited the sharpest growth of +60.5% during the past five years. The growth of international visitor arrivals in Tokyo was aided by initiatives by the public and private sector to promote Tokyo’s tourism and create a welcoming environment for visitors, along with measures taken to relax visa requirements for foreign visitors from Asia and other regions, according to the research.


VIKAND launches solutions to combat common hospitality industry challenges using its cruise experiences

Global maritime medical operations and healthcare solutions provider VIKAND is working to improve problems affecting guest experience in hospitality, building on its experience in the cruise sector. During this year’s Lodging Conference VIKAND announced strategic partnerships with technology solutions manufacturers that target key issues affecting the overall guest experience and business model for stakeholders. It says many of the challenges typically facing the cruise industry are also prevalent in the hospitality industry – including bed bug infestations, foodborne illness outbreaks, and air decontamination. “With cruise ships and remote locations facing similar challenges as the hospitality industry, it is a natural transition to introduce our products and services to hotels – facilitating access to quality and cost-effective solutions,” says Peter Hult, CEO of VIKAND.


Rugby World Cup set to change perception of Japanese culture

The Rugby World Cup will help change the “common stereotype” of Japan around the world, according to Japan Tourism officials. The 2019 world event is the first of its kind to be held in Asia, outside of World Rugby’s ‘traditional’ nations, and has already had a remarkable impact on the economy of Japan during what has been described as “an amazingly exciting time for tourism”. According to Rugby World Cup in Numbers from Protipster, almost GBP400 million will be brought into the nation by international tourists as Japan prepares to welcome 400,000 visitors from abroad.


Hotelbeds insight highlights the rise of the Chinese traveller outside of Asia

Hotelbeds has provided an update on the top international destinations for Chinese travellers during the seven day Chinese National Day holiday period starting on 01-Oct-2019. According to its booking data for this year’s break, five of the top ten international destination countries of this year are Asian and the other five are Non-Asian – with the list topped by Thailand and followed by, in descending order, Japan, Singapore, United States of America, Italy, Indonesia, Malaysia, Spain, the United Kingdom, and Australia. In 2017, it notes, there were only two non-Asian destination countries – USA and Italy – in the list of the top 10 China outbound destinations. In 2018 that number increased to four – USA, Italy, France, and Spain.


Carnival Corporation to develop two new destination projects in The Bahamas

Carnival Corporation and two of its cruise line brands have signed an agreement with the government of The Bahamas to build two major port.  developments. Under the agreement, Carnival Corporation will develop a new cruise port destination primarily for Carnival Cruise Line on Grand Bahama, and construction of a new addition, including a pier, on the Bahamian island of Little San Salvador. The Grand Bahama project will represent an investment of over USD100 million, and the development on Little San Salvador will be an estimated USD80 million investment over time. The two developments will allow Grand Bahama and Little San Salvador to welcome guests from the cruise industry’s larger ships. Once environmental and other permitting processes are completed, construction for both projects is projected to start by mid-2020. The projects are expected to play an important role in the country’s recovery from the recent impact of Hurricane Dorian.