Will self service business travel booking kill classic agencies?

Business travel is changing. The market is changing. And technology is one of the strong drivers for this change.

Self service business travel booking has not been possible 10 years before as access to systems and data was expensive and limited to few instances, e.g. booking providers or agencies.

The cloud makes access to calculation power and data easy and relatively cheap, which lead not only to a wider range of vendors but also a change in the vendors landscape.

Business travel is no longer a domain of travel booking experts, it has become a playground for IT and software experts.

This is not only because enduser technology adoption through smartphones and tablets has become normal.

It is first and foremost because technology and calculation power in the cloud allows clever algorithms on big data and with artificial intelligence. Technology has evolved far enough that machines are able to deliver self service business travel results at acceptable cost even better than average humans can do.

If machine algorithms are able top deliver better results with self service business travel booking than humans can do with manual search, even with agency tools, why would an agency survive?

Agency 2.0+

If agencies want to survive they must understand the impact of self service business travel engines like 1ClickTrips.

It is likely that agencies will no longer be able to deliver 08/15 standard booking services at the same service rates than before, so there will be a shift in services and service charges.

Still, there are chances that even 08/15 standard bookings can be delivered by agencies if they use 1ClickTrips internally to offer booking butler services for customers

  • that are either too lazy to enter their appointment data into 1ClickTrips themselves
  • that don´t have access to data services at that moment
  • that need additional services on top of a standard booking

Self service booking platforms like 1ClickTrips even open the doors for new agency services that have not been possible before. Agencies 2.0+ that focus on fullservice can now deliver

  • human supported analytics
  • chat butler booking
  • meeting arrangements with travel
  • event ticket booking services
  • or even live support service levels during travel

and for sure more. And all these services are supported by 1ClickTrips to allow the delivery of these services with very low efforts to make it economical for an agency as well es the customer to contract the services.

Agencies and self service business travel booking are a team

Looking at the chapter before it becomes clear that engines like 1ClickTrips are either a threat or a catalyst for an agency.

From our perspective we believe that problems that can be solved by algorithms should be supported by machines. And all other problems are the domain of human beings.

As full services agency you can offer both in a perfect combination to deliver the best possible value to those who deserve it: business travelers.

By | 2016-10-20T16:39:26+00:00 July 2nd, 2015|Publications|0 Comments

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