Travelling in the new normal has changed our perspective about many things. It has made us more cautious and conscious of our surroundings. Of course, the paperwork has increased, but people are showing more willingness to step out and explore once again, especially those who have been vaccinated.
Digital travel company Booking.com recently released its ‘Travel Predictions 2022 Research’, to predict how travel will continue to be redefined in 2022 and how dependency on technology will increase this year.
It found that technology will play a key role in terms of supporting spontaneity with increased optionality to book on-the-go. For most travellers, their favorite apps will continue to help them navigate the unknown, with 76 per cent of Indian travellers agreeing that technology helps reduce the anxiety associated with travelling.
According to the report, 72 per cent of Indians are looking to the latest travel technology innovations to throw a ‘wildcard’ or the surprise of a completely new travel experience suggested on the basis of a traveller’s past preference or budget.
From AI-powered translation services that make it easier to communicate last-minute changes of plans to accommodation hosts and rental car providers who don’t speak the same language, to machine-learning models that automatically inform the host about a late arrival to a beach cottage due to a delayed flight, technology will continue to make things smooth.
In 2022, we can expect travellers to make more informed decisions, especially considering that 79 per cent would be interested in an innovative service that could predict which countries will be safe to travel to, even months in advance, or even suggest destinations that are easy to travel to now based on their home country’s and the destination’s current Covid requirements (77 per cent).
Commenting on the findings, Ritu Mehrotra, regional manager, South Asia at Booking.com said, “Travel has been in a state of flux in the past year and the pandemic has led to a significant shift in traveller attitude and behaviour. Entering into the new year, we are observing that technology continues to play an important role in bringing the travel community closer, as people rely on first-hand experiences from other travellers to make informed decisions and gauge where and when it’s right for them to travel. No matter how accurate any machine learning predictions might be, in order for everyone to truly embrace our new unpredictable normal, the broader travel industry will continue to prioritise flexibility.”