Technology

What blockchain in corporate travel could mean for GDSs, TMCs

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Shutterstock

Technology companies, from startups with hardly any funding to the likes of IBM, are exploring how blockchain can be used in travel, including in the corporate space.

One such company is Blockskye, which is using the technology to solve issues around distribution. Founded in 2016, Blockskye is “applying business logic to blockchain,” says the company’s CEO, Brook Armstrong.

In January of this year, Blockskye and Airlines Reporting Company (ARC, which invested in Blockskye in April) completed a successful proof of concept regarding the viability of using blockchain technology with the ARC system to facilitate the reporting and settlement of United Airlines tickets for a corporate client.

When asked if Blockskye is “the long-awaited GDS killer,” Armstrong says GDSs will “be a big part of the system for many years,” but Blockskye is built around a single-record-of-truth architecture that has GDS-like functions in the stack.

Distribution

Skyscanner overhauls brand in shift to more emotional marketing

Sep 24, 2019 / Skyscanner
Skyscanner
Skyscanner

Skyscanner is moving from a functional to emotional approach to marketing and putting more focus on its brand to appeal to consumers who expect “much more” from travel companies.

Skyscanner is rebranding as it looks to “redefine” its purpose with its largest marketing investment to-date.

The travel search site is updating its logo and purpose, and launching a marketing campaign as it looks to “innovate and disrupt” the travel market for the “modern and sustainable” traveler.

The company believes consumers “need much more” from travel companies than before – a trend that is set to continue. This is why it is evolving to engage consumers across every moment of their trip, from inspiring them to explore new destinations to remembering their holiday with new features that are in the pipeline but yet to be revealed.

Business Travel

The cause and effect of slowing business travel

Sep 24, 2019 / Trends
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Shutterstock

With geopolitical and macroeconomic issues causing some concern for large businesses, hotel executives speaking during second-quarter earnings calls noted a drop-off in business transient.

Global geopolitical issues apparently had businesses feeling anxious in the first half of 2019, and that impacted how much they were willing to spend on employee travel.

Various hotel executives - particularly with real estate investment trusts - spoke during second-quarter earnings calls about a slowing of business transient.

James Risoleo, president and CEO, Host Hotels & Resorts says “Businesses were cautious in the quarter, likely driven by the global slowdown and the uncertainty surrounding the ongoing trade negotiations. We believe this led to a decline in business-transient demand, especially in major markets such as New York and San Francisco. All of these factors resulted in weaker results than we and the industry anticipated."

Products & Services

IHG and Mr & Mrs Smith enter exclusive loyalty partnership

Sep 24, 2019 / IHG
InterContinental Hotels Group
InterContinental Hotels Group

Starting early next year, IHG Rewards Club members will be able to earn and redeem points at over 500 Mr & Mrs Smith hotels when booking through IHG’s direct channels.

The  partnership will more than double the number of luxury and boutique hotels which members can choose from, and will be able to earn and redeem points across hundreds of luxury and boutique hotels around the world, including some of Smith’s most seductive stays, such as Jasper Conran’s self-styled riad hideaway L'Hôtel Marrakech, 18th-century organic Tuscan estate Borgo Pignano, high-in-the-Himalayas retreat The Kumaon and the charming Old Rectory on South Africa’s famed Garden Route.

IHG’s most loyal members can expect free room upgrades whenever available and a free gift, called a Smith Extra, on arrival at each Mr & Mrs Smith hotel.

Technology

50 years of the hotel PMS (and why it matters)

Sep 24, 2019 / apaleo (sponsored)
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Shutterstock

Despite the technological progress made during all of those years, for most of that time hotels have relied on legacy systems with relatively basic functionalities and mainframes that kept everyone glued to a desk.

Then in 2010, the cloud-based system came along, which changed so much more about the PMS than most hotels realize. And now, we’ve come even further to the API-first era.

Though it is cloud-based, an API-First PMS is very different from a cloud PMS. An API-first system means that the PMS will connect with ANY third-party software. It is designed with the API first then the PMS is built on top of it so that all integrations are open and available.

Hotels that use an API-first PMS receive all the benefits of cloud-based systems and near-immediate implementations as well as the ability to integrate any feature they want without additional integration fees.