CLIA Extends Suspension of Cruising From US Ports Until September

CLIA | June 19, 2020

The Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) announced on June 19 that its ocean-going cruise line members will voluntarily extend the suspension of cruise operations from U.S. ports until Sept. 15, 2020, as the coronavirus outbreak continues.
“The current no-sail order issued by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will expire on July 24, and although we had hoped that cruise activity could resume as soon as possible after that date, it is increasingly clear that more time will be needed to resolve barriers to resumption in the United States,” the CLIA statement said.

Spotlight

Robots have been a staple of science fiction and childhood dreams for over a century. It’s no exaggeration to say that they have the potential to enhance our lives in ways no other interface can today. But how can social robots help humans? And which industries are on the cusp of the robotics revolution?

One example of how Furhat can be used is in the hospitality industry. Whether that's in hotels or restaurants, social robots can deliver great automated customer service that still feels human.

Spotlight

Robots have been a staple of science fiction and childhood dreams for over a century. It’s no exaggeration to say that they have the potential to enhance our lives in ways no other interface can today. But how can social robots help humans? And which industries are on the cusp of the robotics revolution?

One example of how Furhat can be used is in the hospitality industry. Whether that's in hotels or restaurants, social robots can deliver great automated customer service that still feels human.

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HOSPITALITY TRENDS

Competition for Leisure Guests Heats Up Between Hotels and Short-Term Rentals

AirDNA | November 15, 2022

A new joint report from hospitality data supplier STR and short-term rental analytics provider AirDNA shows that competition between short-term rentals and hotels has accelerated in the fight for leisure guests, with the price gap tightening and rental supply falling behind in urban markets.During the pandemic, the U.S. short-term rental sector used its supply flexibility to recover faster than hotels, especially in coastal and mountain destinations, pushing rentals' market share to a record 17% of total lodging in summer 2020. Hotels retargeted towards leisure guests to reclaim demand, focusing on urban areas, pushing short-term rentals' market share back to below its pre-pandemic trajectory. "During the pandemic, short-term rentals had an advantage over traditional hotels due to consumer perception of better COVID-19 safety, Now in 2022, hotels can compete on price and have claimed demand on key holidays where, pre-pandemic, they typically lost out on leisure travelers." -AirDNA Vice President of Research, Jamie Lane Hotels Lead in Cities In large cities, short-term rental supply contracted dramatically as demand dropped off in 2020, while government subsidies helped to reduce permanent closures of hotels. As urban demand began to recover in 2022, hotels were ready to accommodate travelers, while urban rental supply remains 17% below 2019. With strict regulations limiting short-term rentals in cities like New York and San Francisco, which both lost 25% of their pre-pandemic supply levels, supply is unlikely to fully recover in these areas. "Looking to the future, hotel supply will likely remain strongest in urban and suburban locations, with low development in coastal and rural areas due to higher barriers to entry, where short-term rentals will likely see more opportunity for growth," -STR's Vice President of Analytics Isaac Collazo. A new STR survey of more than 1,000 travelers shows that value for money is an important factor for rental guests, even more than hotel guests. Despite the perception that rentals are cheaper, in 2019, hotels and comparably-sized rentals were priced around the same, except in urban locations. In large cities, hotels were priced 42.9% higher than rentals, but that gap has closed to 26.6% in 2022. Hotels are now offering lower rates than rentals in all location types except urban and coastal resorts, where the difference is 10%. While rentals' market share is highest in coastal and mountain or lake destinations, in urban and suburban locations their share has flattened or declined. Rentals should continue to grow their market share, albeit at a slower pace than pre-pandemic, led by expansion in resorts and small towns less well-served by traditional hotels. About AirDNA AirDNA helps hosts, property managers, and investors succeed in the short-term vacation rental market by turning rental data into actionable analytics. The Denver-based company has tracked the daily performance of 10 million vacation rentals in 120,000 global markets since 2014 to provide real-time market insights. Their range of online and exportable reports offer a solution for everyone in the industry to analyze trends, price rentals, identify new investment opportunities, and benchmark performance. About STR STR provides premium data benchmarking, analytics and marketplace insights for the global hospitality industry. Founded in 1985, STR maintains a presence in 15 countries with a North American headquarters in Hendersonville, Tennessee, an international headquarters in London, and an Asia Pacific headquarters in Singapore. STR was acquired in October 2019 by CoStar Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: CSGP), the leading provider of commercial real estate information, analytics and online marketplaces.

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TRAVEL TECHNOLOGY,INDUSTRY OUTLOOK

Thales Reinforces its Border & Travel Offer With the New Multimodal Biometric Pod

Thales | December 07, 2022

The new Thales multimodal biometric pod is an efficient enrolment and identification solution that helps smoothly manage travelers’ border and immigration processes. The combination of ‘iris & face’ capture and recognition capacities enables a fast and secure enrolment and ID verification at borders. The pod features a modern design that perfectly suits the authority’s needs in highly secure environments. The travel industry and border security agencies have recognized the need to improve efficiency and overall traveler experience at border entry and exit points. For years, biometrics has been used by authorities to simplify traveler experiences at borders, speeding up people enrolment and ID checks such as the eGates or Entry-Exit Systems. With the Thales multimodal biometric pod, borders authorities can easily integrate automation into their processes, without compromising on passenger and employee security or on the confidentiality of the data exchanged as the solution offers ‘security and privacy by design’ parameters. Featuring a camera and a high-resolution LCD screen, the biometric pod is able to recognise pre-enrolled travelers’ iris and face at a distance of 0.5m and up to 1.5m with excellent accuracy. Boosted by AI, the solution captures dual iris and face in two seconds, leading to swifter operations and visibly shorter wait times . Thales biometric pods can be set at any borders checkpoint (airports, seaports, etc.) managing both the first traveler enrolment upon arrival and quick biometric checks whenever required (upon territory exit, internal flights etc). “The combination of biometric patterns applied to contactless authentication, is a sought-after solution for many stakeholders to address security, operational and convenience challenges. Thales relies on its in-house biometrics, border and smart travel expertise to design, develop and deliver top tier responsible biometric solutions to meet users’ expectations and authorities’ requirements”, -Youzec Kurp, VP Identity and Biometric Solutions at Thales. About Thales Thales (Euronext Paris: HO) is a global leader in advanced technologies, investing in digital and “deep tech” innovations – connectivity, big data, artificial intelligence, cybersecurity and quantum technologies – to build a confident future crucial for the development of our societies. The Group provides its customers – businesses, organizations and governments – in the defense, aeronautics, space, transport, and digital identity and security domains with solutions, services and products that help them fulfil their critical role, consideration for the individual being the driving force behind all decisions.Thales has 81,000 employees in 68 countries. In 2021, the Group generated sales of €16.2 billion.

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AIRLINES AND AIRPORTS, INDUSTRY OUTLOOK

FLYR Partners with Azul to Optimize Revenue Management

FLYR Labs | January 30, 2023

FLYR Labs, an Artificial Intelligence (AI)-driven forecasting, pricing, and commercial-wide decision-making solutions provider, recently partnered with Brazilian airline Azul to implement FLYR's advanced AI technologies. The technologies will enhance the airline's revenue management strategy, beginning with fare bundles and ancillary product optimization, addressing the growing customer demands. FLYR will provide Azul with comprehensive pricing, data management, and forecasting capabilities that enable personalized offers for customers to assist the airline in achieving its goal of allowing total revenue management and dynamic offer optimization. Azul's primary source of profit is the sale of ancillary products such as priority boarding, seat selection, luggage, and fare families. The AI-based Revenue Optimization solution offered by FLYR combines all available historical and real-time data with deep learning algorithms to determine the ideal pricing and distribution strategy. The solution from FLYR will enable Azul to provide real-time prices for each customer's shopping request or as a scheduled continuous price. This allows the airline to provide travelers with the right ancillaries at the perfect price, with little change to the present shopping infrastructure. It also predicts anticipated revenues for each flight, all within an intuitive user interface. Since its start in 2008, Azul has been the fastest-growing airline in Brazil, and it now has the country's largest airline network in terms of cities served, with flights to over 150 destinations. Alex Mans, Founder and CEO of FLYR, commented, "We're excited to partner with Azul and harness the power of AI to improve their revenue management and offerings for customers." He added, "The limitations of legacy technology mean airlines have historically struggled to understand how changes in fares can affect ancillary revenues. Through our partnership, we will provide Azul with a crucial competitive advantage when it comes to boosting profitability and enhancing the customer experience." (Source – GlobeNewswire) About FLYR Labs Based in Santa Monica (California), FLYR Labs provides airlines with the intelligence and insight they need to make the best-informed decisions through its proprietary Revenue Operating System. Its vertically integrated platform combines data, forecasting, reporting, pricing, and simulation capabilities into a "single pane of glass" that informs and automates all commercial functions. The company solves complex problems with brilliantly engineered solutions that rely on end-to-end Managed Data Infrastructure and deep learning (AI) to assist leading airlines worldwide in achieving their full potential.

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