With travel once again nearing its pre-pandemic peaks, both customers and companies face a very different landscape – lingering economic uncertainty, increased safety concerns and an ever changing set of rules and restrictions to navigate. In addition to their reservations, tickets and passports, travelers must now contend with masks and vaccination cards, all before reaching the airport security checkpoint or hotel front desk. The stresses encountered before enjoying a relaxing trip or delivering an important client pitch have become overwhelming, not to mention the fact that a majority of travelers are completely out of practice.
On a more positive note, the travel marketplace is ripe with opportunities. Office bound employees have been freed from the tyranny of their desks and can now work from anywhere with a reliable WiFi connection. For innovative airlines, hotels and platforms, new business models, amenities and services have created new customer touch points where they can deliver value and build strong relationships.
To meet the needs of the re-emerging traveler, companies are offering a new set of digital tools to remove common points of friction throughout their journey and help customers feel more connected and in control along the way. What’s more, they must extend and enhance assurances for their passengers and guests to allow them to book and travel more comfortably and confidently. Beyond ensuring ease and convenience, companies must continue to encourage the aspirational aspects of travel by creating new ways for their customers to visit more places and extend their stays through subscription-based packages and improved loyalty programs.
Offering subscription services that allow consumers to rent clothing, not only for formal occasions but for everyday, giving them a commitment-free alternative to buying and allowing them to easily adapt wardrobes to their changing needs.Biometric Gateways
Retailers are building personalized, secure moments into the customer experience that are unlocked by biomarkers or other unique customer identifieers.Frictionless Checkpoints
On-the-go and time-strapped consumers don’t want the inconvenience of waiting in long lines to pay for items, check in or pull out tickets, credit cards and more. Advanced image recognition and mobile responsive technologies are removing the friction from these moments, seamlessly logging in customers as they enter a space and logging them out as they leave. With payment information on file, these systems can also automatically charge people for any items they may have consumed on premises or taken away and check people into expreiences.
To provide its frequent flyer loyalty customers with a faster, more seamless travel experience, Star Alliance is rolling out a new biometric identity platform across participating airlines and airports in partnership with SITA and NEC to remove friction points from the customer journey.