Revolutionising Travel: The Top 3 Tech Trends Shaping the Industry in 2023

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“Extended reality is a growing tech trend”
Source: TNW

The global tourism industry experienced a mix of positive and negative developments in 2022 due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Initially, the main challenge was to attract tourists to start travelling by offering amenities and processes that adhered to social distancing measures in order to ensure that they felt “safe” while travelling overseas. Subsequently, as regulations eased, there was a surge in “revenge travel”, resulting in a sudden influx of tourists which caused many businesses to struggle to meet this increased demand due to limited resources.

In response to these sudden challenges, technology played a crucial role by providing solutions that facilitated compliance with social distancing regulations and tools that enhanced operational capacity while reducing the need for extensive staff. In this way, technology mitigated a huge problem when it came to the influx of demand in the travel industry, especially when it came to underemployment and the sudden loss of human services. 

Hence, while we enter the second half of the year, it is important to reflect on the evolving trends in the tourism sector and explore the emerging technologies that can offer innovative solutions and opportunities for tourism businesses worldwide.

Extended Reality + Company Retreats

“People around the world are feeling overwhelmingly more optimistic about traveling in 2023 compared to 2022”
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The resurgence of business travel in 2023 will see the integration of extended reality with company retreats. According to’s survey on the future of travel, themed company retreats with a “survivor” concept will aid in rebuilding team spirit and camaraderie after a prolonged period of separation. The survey highlights that 44% of the global workforce is eagerly anticipating in-person team-building trips, while 51% would prefer to allocate the savings from remote or hybrid work models towards corporate travel or retreats.

To support company culture-driven retreats, extended reality technologies come into play. There is an emerging trend, which encompasses augmented reality (AR) treasure hunts, where teams engage in a city-wide race to discover clues related to company values, as well as immersive virtual reality (VR) experiences that enhance teamwork and leadership skills. These technologies offer exciting possibilities for creating unique activities centred around company culture.

While extended reality has been around for some time, the market has evolved, and an increasing number of companies now provide customisable and accessible solutions suitable for businesses of all sizes. The benefits of extended reality in the workforce overweighs the drawbacks by a mile as not only will it enhance the productivity of work yielded out but also causes a significant reduction in burnout and stress which leads to a better wellbeing for all its employees.

Artificial Intelligence

“Generative AI, also known as generative adversarial networks (GANs), is now taking the technology’s potential to the next level”

Simply put, Artificial intelligence (AI) is a domain within computer science that involves the replication of human intelligence by machines and computers. AI has already gained significant traction within the tourism industry, with widespread adoption by various businesses. The implementation of AI-based customer service robots and online chatbots has revolutionised operations, enabled faster response times, alleviated staff from repetitive tasks and gave businesses instant insights into customer satisfaction through customer data analysis.

One exciting application of Generative AI lies within the hospitality sector. It can be utilised to design innovative hotel concepts, create optimal layouts, and even create virtual tours of facilities to entice prospective customers. For MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Exhibitions) planners, Generative AI can produce personalised itinerary options tailored to individual customers’ preferences in a snap. Both conference planners and attractions can benefit from the ability to effortlessly generate different layouts. This capability aids in optimising event setups, minimising congestion as well as strategically directing foot traffic to specific locations, thereby enhancing overall attendee experience.

AI can also be used by travelling agencies to generate extra income.Thanks to its artificial intelligence technology, Hotelmize helped its clients earn a whooping additional $80 million in profits last year. Skyscanner, a travel technology company, also states that it has made a massive leap in customer service and interactions thanks to its AI chatbots. Their chatbots are established across multiple social platforms and in February 2018, Skyscanner shared that their application had surpassed one million interactions with travellers.

The use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the travel industry has clearly brought about significant advancements and benefits. It is evident that the integration of AI in travel holds promising potential for optimising experiences and personalisation and travel companies should start incorporating the use of AI if they want to thrive and have a leading edge in the industry.

E- Payments

“Digital payment solutions…are making it even easier for customers to spend while on vacation”

The Amadeus 2023 Travel Trends Report highlights a rising trend in the adoption of biometric identification and payment systems. These advanced systems enable guests to conveniently perform various tasks, including check-in, seat upgrades, and shopping, through an easy fingerprint or retinal scan.

One notable example is Hudson, a food and beverage provider, which has introduced “nonstop shops” in several US airports. These shops utilise Amazon One biometric technology, allowing customers to make payments by effortlessly placing their hand over the kiosk sensor.

If you’re not quite ready for biometrics yet, there are other digital payment solutions available that make spending during vacations even easier. These include payment apps, digital wallets, buy now pay later options, and account-to-account (A2A) payments. These solutions cater to customers’ desire for seamless and hassle-free transactions.

In conclusion, the tourism industry in 2022 faced a series of challenges and opportunities due to the Covid-19 pandemic. As regulations fluctuated, businesses had to adapt by implementing technology solutions to ensure compliance with social distancing measures and cope with sudden surges in demand. Looking ahead, the second half of the year presents an opportunity to explore emerging trends and technologies that can revolutionise the industry. Integration of extended reality with company retreats offers unique team-building experiences, while artificial intelligence enhances operations and customer satisfaction. Additionally, the adoption of biometric identification and digital payment systems provides convenience and seamless transactions for travellers. By embracing these technological advancements, tourism businesses can navigate the evolving landscape and unlock new opportunities for growth.

Done By: Rejina Khar, Zarif Ong & Elly Ken
Source:, TNW, Cision, Hotelmize & Econsultancy