TRAVEL TECHNOLOGY

New Sojern Report Shows Travel Marketers' 2021 Plans for Digital Advertising

Sojern | August 25, 2021

Sojern, a leading provider of digital travel marketing solutions, today published a new report titled, “How Travel Marketers Are Activating Digital Advertising in 2021.”

Worldwide Business Research (WBR) Insights surveyed senior decision makers in Asia-Pacific, Europe, North America, and Middle East and Africa who own the marketing budget for a hotel, attraction or tourism brand. These 300 travel marketers shared key challenges faced as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has led them to test new solutions, innovate with new messaging, and generally do more with less.
“The last 18-months have been quite the rollercoaster for travel marketers navigating the global pandemic, but one thing is clear: travel marketers are more focused than ever before on effectively and efficiently spending precious resources to drive a business return,” said Noreen Henry, Chief Revenue Officer, Sojern. “In this environment you need to be agile, data-driven and optimistic—travel is coming back and it’s a great time to take part in that recovery.”

Key findings of travel marketers surveyed include:
  • 56 percent agree that the current environment is ideal for direct response campaigns. Travellers are booking directly because of clearer cancelation or refund policies, coupled with their frustrating experiences navigating online travel agency (OTA) reimbursements for cancelled trips.
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  • 88 percent have increased or kept their digital advertising strategy budget the same since COVID-19.
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  • 87 percent tightened spending on brand campaigns and increased spending on performance campaigns in 2020.
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  • 84 percent rated machine learning and artificial intelligence as top priority for personalisation across channels.
Consumers are eager to travel, and with the increasingly widespread administration of COVID-19 vaccines, the hard hit travel, media, and entertainment industries are all expected to rebound in 2021. The upward swing is already under way, with a surge in domestic and regional tourism, as newly vaccinated consumers exercise the option to travel within their own borders.

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Spotlight

What are the best places to eat in the town I am visiting? How do I eat cheap yet well while I travel? How do I eat on a student budget while I travel? These are all travel food questions we have received from fans, friends and followers. Here are our 6 tips for eating cheap and well while you travel.

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TRAVEL TECHNOLOGY, INDUSTRY OUTLOOK

Hospitality Software Innovator Agilysys Named to Finalist Shortlist in Three Categories for the 2022 UK Business Technology Awards

Agilysys | September 02, 2022

The UK Business Tech Awards, which celebrate companies that demonstrate an exceptional application of technology to transform and grow businesses in the United Kingdom, has shortlisted hospitality software innovator Agilysys in three award categories for 2022. Judged by an independent panel of leading technology experts, the final winners will be announced at a gala dinner and awards ceremony in London on Thursday, October 20thThe three categories in which Agilysys is on the finalist shortlist are (1) Property Tech of the Year, (2) SaaS Company of the Year and (3) Tech Company of the Year, Medium-Sized Company. With no hospitality-specific category in the awards listing, Agilysys’ position as a finalist in each of these categories underscores the growing importance of hospitality technology within the broader UK technology sector. “We are proud to represent the importance of hospitality technology in the UK as we share shortlist status with highly-respected technology pioneers from a spectrum of industries.” -Agilysys Senior Sales Director Matthew Prosser Prosser continued, Research shows people have elevated expectations as they re-engage with travel. In a study of 12,000 tourists in 12 countries, Expedia found 65 percent of respondents want their next holiday to be the ‘greatest of all trips, with more immersive and meaningful experiences. Delivering on those expectations one guest at a time requires applying technology and data in interesting ways to create guest and staff experiences that are both personal and profitable, Prosser added. Being the only comprehensive solution provider solely focused on hospitality enables Agilysys to deliver both functional breadth and innovative advancements through the Agilysys Hospitality Cloud. This platform encompasses core property management (PMS), point-of-sale (POS) and Inventory and Procurement (I&P) solutions as well as 28 Experience Enhancer applications that work with core solutions to extend capabilities such as self-service, mobile access, analytics, payment processing, document management, digital dining and multi-amenity (such as golf, spa and other activities) scheduling and management. Core solutions and Experience Enhancers can be combined in Hospitality Solution Studios tailored for different settings. All Hospitality Cloud elements have been meticulously designed to improve guest experiences and loyalty while growing the bottom line. The company’s recognition as a leading technology pioneer in the hospitality sector comes at a pivotal moment, with travel returning to record levels and hospitality operators in need of data-rich, full-coverage solutions that easily can be configured to deliver individualised experiences based on unique guest profiles. Noted Prosser, The more deeply operators and management companies understand their guests and staff – both in real-time and over time – the more likely they are to delight them while also operating at healthy margins. This is the central advantage technology innovation delivers in hospitality. About Agilysys Agilysys is well known for its long heritage of hospitality-focused technology innovation. The Company delivers modular and integrated software solutions and expertise to businesses seeking to maximize Return on Experience (ROE) through hospitality encounters that are both personal and profitable. Over time, customers achieve High Return Hospitality by consistently delighting guests, retaining staff and growing margins. Customers around the world include: branded and independent hotels; multi-amenity resort properties; casinos; property, hotel and resort management companies; cruise lines; corporate dining providers; higher education campus dining providers; food service management companies; hospitals; lifestyle communities; senior living facilities; stadiums; and theme parks. The Agilysys Hospitality Cloud™ combines core operational systems for property management (PMS), point-of-sale (POS) and Inventory and Procurement (I&P) with Experience Enhancers™ that meaningfully improve interactions for guests and for employees across dimensions such as digital access, mobile convenience, self-service control, personal choice, payment options, service coverage and real-time insights to improve decisions. Core solutions and Experience Enhancers are selectively combined in Hospitality Solution Studios™ tailored to specific hospitality settings and business needs. www.Agilysys.com

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DESTINATION AND TOURISM, AIRLINES AND AIRPORTS

Spotnana and American Airlines Partner to Personalize Travel Offers

Spotnana and American Airlines | September 12, 2022

Spotnana, the modern infrastructure for the travel industry, announced it has developed an advanced integration into American Airlines direct channels that supports personalized travel offers. Travelers booking trips through Spotnana’s Travel-as-a-Service Platform can now access NDC enhanced offerings for greater selections including additional booking flexibility and conveniences as well as seamless loyalty program enrollment and membership benefits We’re excited to partner with American Airlines to build the deepest integration that has existed to date between an airline and a travel platform,” said Sarosh Waghmar, co-founder and CEO of Spotnana. NDC was introduced to the travel industry 10 years ago and has seen minimal adoption for corporate travel. We aim to change that by providing the industry with a new modern, cloud-based infrastructure designed to connect the travel ecosystem and deliver a new generation of personalized travel experiences. Spotnana’s integration with American Airlines enables a more seamless, tailored booking experience and offers customers exclusive access to a diverse suite of products and services that elevate the travel journey. Key benefits for corporations accessing American’s modern retail offerings through Spotnana’s Travel-as-a-Service Platform include: Enhanced offerings for great selections – Travelers gain access to products exclusively available through American’s NDC and direct channels, including but not limited to Main Plus and Flagship® Business Plus™. Seamless loyalty program enrollment – Travelers can join American’s AAdvantage® loyalty program with one-click enrollment at time of booking and receive relevant shopping results tailored to AAdvantage® membership benefits. Additional booking flexibility and conveniences – Travelers can purchase ancillary products in advance, modify or cancel trips on a self-service basis, view corporate negotiated rates, and unlock access to Preferred and Paid seats via a comprehensive seat map. “The Spotnana platform utilizes American’s enhanced direct connection to deliver a more seamless booking experience for customers Our corporate customers who book through Spotnana will now have access to a modern retailing experience, inclusive of elevated offers, benefits, and ancillaries they value through a single, corporate-approved online booking tool.” -Neil Geurin, Managing Director of Airline Retailing at American Airlines We’re grateful to work so closely with American Airlines, who is a true industry innovator and pioneer,”said Bill Brindle, VP of Travel Operations at Spotnana. This integration is just the beginning of what is possible through our open Travel-as-a-Service Platform, and the first of many direct connections we plan to build with the world’s leading travel suppliers. About Spotnana Spotnana powers unparalleled global travel experiences. We are modernizing the infrastructure of the travel industry in order to bring freedom, simplicity, and trust to travelers everywhere. Our Travel-as-a-Service Platform makes travel simpler and more affordable for corporations, while enabling our ecosystem of agency, supplier, and technology provider partners to increase operational efficiency, unlock new revenue sources, and accelerate innovation. To learn more, visit spotnana.com.

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TRAVEL TECHNOLOGY, INDUSTRY OUTLOOK, HOSPITALITY TRENDS

Paysafe Partners With HotelKey to Streamline Payments for US Hotels

Paysafe | October 21, 2022

Paysafe (NYSE: PSFE), a leading specialized payments platform, announced a new integrated payments partnership with HotelKey, a cloud-based software solution provider for the hospitality industry. Paysafe will seamlessly integrate with HotelKey’s software solutions to streamline payments for U.S. hotels across their front-desk, hospitality, retail, food and beverage, and other back-of-house operationsHotelKey’s software solutions are currently deployed across thousands of hotels in the U.S. and are designed to help individual properties and hotel chains, including independently-owned and franchised hotels, manage their end-to-end guest operations. Paysafe will support HotelKey’s mission to simplify hotel property management by establishing a centralized hub for payment processing to securely process in-person, card-present and card-not-present transactions across all designated sales channels. The integration will provide properties using HotelKey’s simple, cloud-based software applications with the enhanced ability to offer frictionless online credit and debit card payments to hotel guests for transactions at the front-desk, in bars and restaurants, and for onsite events and catering services. This solution provides the flexibility for properties to process transactions through a secure payment gateway, including Freedom Pay, Elavon, or Shift 4 gateways, to maximize revenue and overall efficiency of payment acceptance while enabling more hotels, regardless of their size or scale of business, to meet U.S. and international travelers’ payment preferences. HotelKey’s integration with Paysafe supports in-person, or card-present, transactions across all retail touchpoints a property can offer. As well as check-ins and on-property hospitality, payment processing for purchases made onsite at convenience stores, gift shops, spas, salons, restaurants, bars, and other recreational services, will all be supported. In addition to processing guest-related transactions, Paysafe will integrate with HotelKey’s back-of-house-focused app to streamline payments for recurring purchases that support day-to-day operational needs, including food and beverage orders to restock onsite bars and restaurants, guest room linens, and essential supplies for housekeeping and maintenance teams. “We’re passionate about partnering with innovative technology companies to develop forward-thinking payment solutions. Our partnership with HotelKey is an exciting opportunity to reinvent the retail and payments experience for the hospitality industry. With HotelKey, we look forward to providing the dedicated support that will help U.S. hotels continue to thrive.” -Afshin Yazdian, President of Merchant Solutions at Paysafe Alexander Schindelbeck, VP of Operations, commented: “We’re excited to partner with Paysafe to provide our hotel clients with an embedded payment solution that addresses growing consumer demand for convenience by creating a seamless payments experience that simplifies the day-to-day responsibilities of property staff, and increases owner visibility of their property’s payment processing from a single reporting dashboard.” About Paysafe Limited Paysafe Limited (“Paysafe”) (NYSE: PSFE) (PSFE.WS) is a leading specialized payments platform. Its core purpose is to enable businesses and consumers to connect and transact seamlessly through industry-leading capabilities in payment processing, digital wallet, and online cash solutions. With over 20 years of online payment experience, an annualized transactional volume of over US $120 billion in 2021, and approximately 3,500 employees located in 10+ countries, Paysafe connects businesses and consumers across 100 payment types in over 40 currencies around the world. Delivered through an integrated platform, Paysafe solutions are geared toward mobile-initiated transactions, real-time analytics and the convergence between brick-and-mortar and online payments. Further information is available at www.paysafe.com. About HotelKey HotelKey is a cloud-based Property Management System designed for the Hospitality Industry. Since 2014, HotelKey has provided software solutions that are efficient, reliable, and easy to use. The HotelKey Platform combined with its world class Client Services teams supports individual properties, small to large sized portfolios, and global enterprises. HotelKey is based in Dallas, TX., and serves clients worldwide from offices in South Asia and Europe. For more information, visit www.hotelkeyapp.com.

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