The future of airline travel is set to change dramatically. With a drop in flights and a reduction in passengers travelling through airports, it is the perfect time to overhaul some of the issues of travel that have cast a pall over trips for years. But what can the luxury travel industry learn from other traditional industries – namely, and perhaps surprisingly, the casino industry – that embraced the changes presented by a digital world to help improve passengers’ journeys?
Changes to Luxury Travel
In an advancement from online check-in, airline apps are expected to partner with QR codes that allow passengers to check-in themselves and even drop their own luggage, which would replace the snaking queues of the past. Pittsburgh International Airport is trialling Zensor, a software tool which provides real-time estimates of crowds at bars, restaurants, cafes, shops and even toilets. This would help passengers to streamline their own journey and avoid any rushes that may be present.
Moreover, state of the art surveillance techniques could help replace the existing security at airports, which would give a more hands-free experience and remove some of the stress of bundling through lengthy lines. Dubai International Airport has a ‘smart’ tunnel which scans your irises and verifies you, which could be further rolled out around the world. X-ray technology could be used on a wider scale, so you don’t have to remove particular items of clothing, such as belts and shoes, to get checked. Ultimately, the measures that could be deployed in airports could help add a dose of luxury to some of the least luxurious elements of travel.
But making such huge changes to an industry that has remained the same for so long might take some getting used to for those working there, as well as passengers. This is where the luxury travel industry could learn some lessons from another industry that managed to pivot and alter its services to customers based on what they were expecting from current technology – and the opportunities that this technology afforded the industry.
The online casino industry is testament to a traditional sector – casinos have been in play for centuries – that was able to pivot and adapt to the demands of the current climate. As people began to spend more time online, taking advantage of the digital footfall seemed prudent for the industry, so they were able to amend their key offering to target these new customers. Airlines and travel have a similar opportunity afforded by the growth in technology and the decline in footfall, leading to the optimum time to make some changes.
For example, one of the key fixtures of the casino experience was the slot machine. These machines had one style of gameplay and were fixed in place. Digital technology means that online casino operators can offer a multitude of slot games, each with different gameplay and themes. The Jackpot King on Paddy Power shows slot games that have a rolling jackpot, for instance, which wouldn’t have been possible in a traditional format. Allowing multiple players around the world to feed into one game allows the game to take a new and vibrant slant. This offers something to players that matches the level of technology that customers might be expecting.
Changes to the luxury travel industry would be welcomed by passengers to streamline their journeys. It may take some logistics, but a drop in flight users provides the perfect time to trial these changes. As other traditional industries have shown success by leaning into the benefits of growing technology, improvements to luxury travel are expected to be an investment in the future.
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