19 Key Takeaways from the 2019 Phocuswright Conference

19 Key Takeaways from the 2019 Phocuswright Conference

Check out the top takeaways from the most anticipated international tourism event of 2019!

      1. Artificial intelligence was the protagonist of the 2019 Phocuswright Conference. Google reveals how, by leveraging AI and machine learning, businesses can provide a more personal and effective offer. According to the internet giant, we’re only at the beginning and the best is yet to come!

      2. Beachy: a new platform that allows beachgoers to book everything they need for a day on the beach.

      3. Meet Chamat Palihapitiya, the CEO of Social Capital. His mission is to bring a modern twist towards empowering entrepreneurs and allowing employees to feel more valued. Many companies boast about how much fun their employees have, but in reality, these workers wish they had a bit more support.

      4. Developers.amadeus.com. 2020 will be the year of APIs and integration. Many B2B projects rely on APIs alone, without an interface and provisioning. Data is no longer a product of the future, but the present.

      5. Exosonic, a start-up with a timeline for the return of large supersonic planes. Will we break-down the sound barrier and see 3-hour flights between London and New York. Exosonic predicts this could be our reality in about ten years. But don’t buy your ticket just yet. The connections will be limited and the prices will be high.

      6. The future is frictionless! Businesses are really investing at ways to arrive at a solution with the least complex system possible.

      7. Say hello to 5G! With 5G, Wi-Fi will become less of a necessity. 5G promises to be faster, more fluid and revolutionise our everyday life.

      8. Hotelmize, a platform for OTAs, that predicts - via AI technology - hotel rates at any certain time. This allows OTAs to buy rates when they’re lower and resell them at their convenience.

      9. Instant connectivity thanks to Airalo. It’s a virtual eSIM aggregator application, useful for those who need to easily activate a virtual operator abroad without going to the store. However, you’ll need a phone that supports the eSIM. New iPhone for the holidays anyone?

      10. Steve Hafner, CEO of Kayak, got personal during his speech. “People say to me, you’re in your 50s, money-wise, you are okay, why are you still working? Well, I am still here because there’s still so much left to do and I am still having a great time.” He highlighted KAYAK For Business, described as “the only business travel platform with no customer service”.

      11. Loyalty continues to be the talk of hotel chain giants (IHG, Marriott, Wyndham, etc.), but it’s not helping them take on OTAs.

      12. Mobile bookings have a tremendous impact. In Germany, 65% of bookings were made on a smartphone. In Indonesia and China? Nearly 100 percent!

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      13. OYO hotels, an Asian-based agency, has become the third largest in the world with a total of 950,000 rooms. This exaggerated business model will soon make it's way to Italy!

      14. The region of Puglia, one of our clients, is making the news for the best possible reason! They have been recognised for their stellar attention to brand reputation. Puglia really listens to travellers and involves tour operators in their innovation strategies. They were mentioned by Expedia for the success of their destination marketing campaign. To learn more, download the success story of Puglia.

      15. Robotics… We’ve been talking about robotics for years, but to date, no one seems to have a grasp on their functionality, except for the Asian market. They have demonstrated benefits for both operators and users. More than 70% of Japanese consumers would have no problem, and would even consider it desirable, to interact with robots.

      16. Stefen Kaufer of TripAdvisor confirmed that the Owl is growing. However, it has been rumoured, that Ctrip will buy it. Stay tuned!

      17. Troop Travel is the latest platform corporate travel and meetings. Thanks to their AI, businesses will be able to optimise their strategies. 

      18. USA! Our friends across the pond rely on Google more than word of mouth from family and friends as a reference for travel advice.
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      19. Voice assistants are steadily growing, but only 25% of travellers say that they feel like using a voice assistant if there's one in their hotel room.


        BONUS

      20. 2020 is fast approaching so we’re throwing in a bonus takeaway! Say hello to HICON - the Hospitality Innovation Conference. This one-day event is jam-packed with industry updates, international speakers, interactive workshops and networking opportunities. You don’t want to miss it!