Challenges faced by Traditional Travel Agencies and how Technology can help
“Resistance to innovation drives you to extinction” is the perfect quote for the circumstances many offline travel agencies find themselves in today. Two factors that have lead to current situation of retail travel agencies are : 1) Emergence and penetration of online travel agencies and 2) Global economic downturn which affected both online and offline agencies.
Competitive prices, a strong value proposition and process efficiency will be the core factors that must be taken into consideration by individual offline travel agencies to compete with online travel portals.
- Biggest challenge for offline agencies is how to compete and deal with the online agencies
- Entry of OTAs into the offline space – Global OTAs are expanding their network of high street offices, directly affecting traditional SMB travel agencies.
- Resistance to move away from manual and outdated processes which leads to errors, high operating costs, slow turnaround times and customer dissatisfaction.
- Huge documentation which can create information loss
- Difficulty in dealing with today’s tech savvy and demanding customers, inability to provide exceptional service and maintaining relationships which leads to reduction in getting referral business
- Limited market reach due to lack of a multichannel marketing strategy and brand awareness
- Lack of transparency and speed in services
- Access to product and pricing information not readily available to clients
So in order to remain relevant in the changing travel landscape, they need to continue to provide world-class services(online and offline) by:
- Clearly understanding of customer needs, including their need for quick access to relevant information and the ease and convenience of booking online
- Providing specialized knowledge regarding destinations with available solutions
- Providing fast turnaround by switching to online reservation systems for managing mid-office and back-office functions
- Using strong online distribution systems(b2c, b2b and b2b2c)
- Creating strategic and tactical travel plans that efficiently and cost-effectively align and prioritize those solutions to best address the customer’s needs.
So if you’re looking for a technology partner to help give your business the success it deserves, TravelCarma would be a great fit. TravelCarma has been serving the travel industry for over 20 years, providing end-to-end travel technology solutions to travel agencies, tour operators and hospitality companies to enhance their business by eliminating the hindrances to their growth potential and optimizing their business processes.