Travel companies are positioning themselves as trusted partners in the planning process by linking guests to destination experiences

The process of planning a trip is hard enough, and consumers don’t want the added complication of going to 10 different places to book every aspect of their itinerary. What’s more, it can be frustrating and time-consuming to start a relationship from scratch as they transition between providers.

Companies are responding by aligning with key brands to extend their offerings and position themselves as a trusted partner in the planning and booking process. By creating a one-stop-shop for access to transportation, accommodations, cultural events and other services, travel brands are owning a bigger piece of the marketplace, while making the path to purchase as seamless as possible for their guests.

94% of travel and innovation experts surveyed for our most recent report, the Travel Debrief, said that access to personalized experiences through curated itineraries will be important or very important to travelers in the next two to three years.

Consumers want to have ultimate access while traveling. PSFK researchers explored a few programs satisfying this trend:

AccorHotels
Paris-based company AccorHotels launched a mobile app that allows users to access services from both local merchants and AccorHotels properties. The app will change the way the company interacts with its guests and its connections with other brands. In addition to partnering with local merchants, AccorHotels has formed key partnerships with florists Pampa and Bergamotte, yoga and pilates studio Oly Be, bakery Poilâne, coffee brand Nespresso and car rental service Hertz 24/7.

Marriott
Marriott International is looking to connect loyal members to more experiences by investing in a platform called PlacePass—a search platform that connects travelers to a wide range of destination activities. Travelers will be able to choose from over 100,000 local experiences in 800 destinations worldwide when they book directly on Marriott.com.

WeChat
Chinese multi-purpose social media and mobile application software WeChat is partnering with key businesses in global travel destinations to offer City Experience mini programs. The new service offers geolocation, image galleries and audio guides of tourist attractions in Chinese and English, and even suggests one- to five-day itineraries. The City Experience aims to give more freedom and flexibility to travelers, enabling them to create their own agendas.

Industry disruptors like Airbnb have led consumers to expect plentiful options on one convenient platform. Travel and hospitality brands have an opportunity to build an exclusive network that rounds out the guest experience—and make it all available at the touch of a button.

The process of planning a trip is hard enough, and consumers don’t want the added complication of going to 10 different places to book every aspect of their itinerary. What’s more, it can be frustrating and time-consuming to start a relationship from scratch as they transition between providers.

Companies are responding by aligning with key brands to extend their offerings and position themselves as a trusted partner in the planning and booking process. By creating a one-stop-shop for access to transportation, accommodations, cultural events and other services, travel brands are owning a bigger piece of the marketplace, while making the path to purchase as seamless as possible for their guests.