The digital age is well upon us and there is an app for everything, which means big business for tourism app development.
Everywhere you look people are on their smart phones or tablets and having a smart phone is about as common as having a land-line phone 30 years ago.
Everybody has one, regardless of age, and everybody uses one for multiple purposes. It is a fact of life in our country, and really worldwide.
Every industry is affected by the digital transformation and the tourism industry is certainly no exception. Technology has transformed the way we travel, as well as the way we plan our trips and explore the things we want to do.
Travel agencies are basically a thing of the past and going to a physical location to book a trip is nearly unheard of.
A recent survey by eMarketer shows that over 60% of smart phone users take advantage of tourism apps when planning their vacations.
Travel oriented mobile apps are the 7th most downloaded category of apps. If that many people are using them, it is obviously a trend that is going to do nothing but continue to climb upward.
Tourism apps can be designed and used for a plethora of things, but here are some basic uses for tourist services through mobile apps:
- Things such as GPS services, planning your route and maps are all widely used in tourism apps.
- Social aspects. Things like picture galleries, reviews of various restaurants and events, and also updates of what is happening on specific dates.
- Mobile marketing. This can be used to offer discounts, have a contest, and special offers, especially time sensitive ones.
- Emergency calls, medical alerts and info about local and international health agencies.
- E-commerce. This can be used to book tickets, do banking when you are out of the country or things like dinner reservations and shopping.
New facets are also coming out all the time that affect the tourism industry.
Things like ride sharing, which is a recent phenomenon have really taken off and cashless options for tourists (using things like Apple Pay) are making travel much safer, especially out of the country.
Here are some trends and innovations that are currently driving the industry into new markets:
- Real-time tracking. Real-time is now the norm. People can track their car, bus, or cab as it is motion and all transportation will eventually go to this. Public transport has already reached this point with more and more agencies using loT and GPS devices, providing live info for everything from trains to buses.
- Going cashless. Taking money on trips has long been something that has invited theft and also stress, as money can get lost or misplaced when people travel. Digital currency is a huge benefit to combat these issues and there are now multiple apps that allow you to travel cashless and make payments for goods and services all over the world with a click or a tap.
- Tourism Apps that are custom fit to your travel needs. As AI takes a hold ad becomes more advanced, you will find smarter tourism apps as well. These will be customizable for each travel for things like travel routes, times, and budget. Using things like travel history, preferences and feedback from previous trips, these apps will be able to recommend and better plan trips for each individual traveler.
- Social planning. Using recommendations, these apps will allow users to use suggestions from friends and family as well as things like tips from experts and consumer reviews. Social media plays a huge part in choosing travel destinations and is an important factor for travelers. The integration of APIs and vendor reviews can allow tourism companies to offer social proof to travelers who are considering a certain destination.
- Geo targeted recommendations are gaining a lot of traction in many various industries and tourism will fit right in. Localized suggestions to travelers based upon things like location and preferences. Booking.com does this by making use of mobile location offers and users can optimize their planning and user experience. In this instance APIS will auto-fill profiles, purchase history and location info.
Overall, the tourism app industry has great potential for monetization and various revenue generation. It is not just the United States where the potential is limitless either.
Many tourism app companies have developed world wide travel apps that do everything from helping users to understand the social and business etiquette when visiting different countries to cultural do’s and don’ts.
The tourism sector is quite vast and there is extremely high potential for tapping various niche markets within the industry. There are so many micro levels to tourism that the app market is virtually limitless.
Find out how an area tourism apps can help increase visitors to your destination. Give Cody Edwards a call today at (406) 369-5884 or visit Touch Point Designs LLC, at //www.interactivetravelguides.com