There is no doubt that technology is driving the tourism and hospitality industry to previously unknown heights. That is not something you need to tell officials at TUI UK & Ireland, as evidenced by an announcement that the company plans to launch a new in-flight iPad programme later this year with its Thomson Airways subsidiary. The trial programme will begin using aircraft based at the company's terminal at Luton Airport.
TUI UK & Ireland has been busily working on launching a new, state-of-the-art technology programme across its entire European network. It has already spent millions of pounds on technologies that make the company more efficient, more lean, and more responsive to customer needs. The iPad project is just the next step of that programme.
A New Level of Service
The focus of the iPad project is to offer a new level of service to guests using TUI travel services. When the system is fully functional, cabin crews on Thomson Airways flights will have access to each customer's individual destination in order to make recommendations about dining, sightseeing, group excursions and more. All of the consumer data will be stored so that returning guests can be offered a more personalised experience every time they travel.
TUI has named the initiative TUInnovate, taking advantage of the idea that technological innovation is what will drive the tourism industry forward. The innovation of the iPad programme is evident in the fact that it goes well beyond information made available to cabin crews. While in flight, crews will also be able to directly contact travel advisors on the ground to let them know individual passengers will be arriving. The travel advisors will use the same data to pick up right where the cabin crews leave off.
The company has already received an excellent response from guests and employees relating to the parts of the technology programme already in place. It is expecting an equally positive response from the iPad project. Assuming the company is correct, it plans to expand the programme to cover all of their airport bases in the UK.
Officials at TUI have come to the conclusion that the tourism industry is now focusing heavily on personalised service for each individual guest. In order for them to continue being a European leader in travel and tourism, they need to find new ways to meet those expectations. The iPad programme is just one of the innovations they are working on. Others are sure to follow in the near future.
As for the UK traveller, a more personalised experience should make for a considerably more enjoyable holiday. Personalised service gives all of us an opportunity to feel like royalty, even if only for 10 to 14 days out of a year. Moreover, when it is done correctly, the personalised service tourism companies offer is capable of building loyal relationships that are hard to break. Companies that do it best, like TUI UK & Ireland, stand to be the market leaders for years to come.
- Travel News UK – http://www.travel-news.co.uk/9707/2014/06/tui-to-launch-in-flight-ipad-trials-this-summer/