From Hyper-Personalisation To Content Generation: How Generative AI Is Impacting Travel Sector

From Hyper-Personalisation To Content Generation: How Generative AI Is Impacting Travel Sector

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By Ashish Sidhra

The new wave of AI technology has initiated a transformative change that is catalysing the way we work. With its ability to generate, simulate, and optimise content, generative AI is unlocking new horizons in every possible industry. It is a rising digital star that skyrocketed to fame within a few months via popular applications like ChatGPT and Midjourney.

The travel industry is also no stranger to generative AI. In fact, the industry is at the forefront of adopting generative AI to enhance customer experience and stay ahead in the competitive landscape. 

But how is generative AI assisting the travel industry and what’s the extent to which it can be utilised? Let’s take a look.

Hyper-Personalisation

Gone are the days when cookie-cutter travel plans would be the first choice of humans. Now, travellers want personalisation.

According to a recent report by Accenture, 83 per cent of travellers express a strong interest in receiving personalised recommendations. Generative AI has the potential to analyse extensive datasets, including travel history, interests, and online behaviour, to offer tailor-made itineraries that cater to individual preferences.

By providing such unique and memorable experiences, generative AI not only can boost customer satisfaction but also fuel customer loyalty and positive word-of-mouth.

Seamless Customer Service

Customer service in the travel industry is not a 9-to-5 task. It needs to be round-the-clock and quick. This is where generative AI can be a game-changer.  

AI-powered conversational chatbots and virtual assistants will be able to handle booking enquiries, provide real-time flight updates, offer recommendations, and even assist with language translations. By automating routine tasks, generative AI frees up human resources to focus on more complex and value-added interactions, creating a higher level of customer satisfaction.

Generative AI can further enable sentiment analysis to help companies identify customer feedback and sentiment. This, in turn, allows them to address issues proactively and improve service quality.

Content Creation

If there’s one superpower of generative AI that has wowed everyone, it is its ability to generate content instantly. Models like ChatGPT are being used to create guides, itineraries, travel hacks, and anything and everything you can think of.

In fact, high-quality videos and images can also be produced in minutes. Automation is also accelerating the process of content distribution saving time and increasing the reach of the brands.

The Other Side Of The Coin

There is no doubt that Generative AI has the potential to revolutionise the travel industry by offering improved efficiency, personalisation, and customer experiences. However, we need to be aware of the limitations of the technology and prevent being driven by the initial hype surrounding it.

AI Hallucinations

What do humans do when they don’t know an answer? They simply say so. But that’s not the case with generative AI. If it doesn’t know the answer or doesn’t understand the question, it still generates content, even if it is factually incorrect. This behaviour is starting to be termed “AI Hallucinations”.

Hype-driven commentary around travellers being able to build complex travel plans with the help of AI needs to be seen in the context of these Hallucinations. Misinformation or misleading content generated by such technology can lead to poor customer experience and potential reputational damage. And we are already starting to see early examples of such reputational damages.

Privacy And Data Quality

With hyper-personalisation as a perk, generative AI is raising concerns about data and privacy. For instance, AI depends highly on data it scraps from various sources, such as customer preferences, booking records, and historical trends. But not every time, such data is of any high quality. Along the same lines, there is a real risk of AI algorithms developing biases if they are trained on historical data which might be discriminatory and redundant.

Data protection and privacy is another challenge that generative AI has not tackled yet. In fact, many countries and companies like Samsung have banned the use of generative AI due to its data sensitivity.

Legal and Regulatory Issues

One of the key overlooked areas regarding AI tech is the absence of related legal and regulatory frameworks. It is only a matter of time before we see debates emerging on legal liabilities in the case of decisions/ advice given by AI technology.

Striking The Balance

Generative AI’s introduction has certainly brought a seismic shift. According to data from Precedence Research, global generative AI in the travel market size is expected to hit around $3,581.95 million by 2032.

But there is one thing we cannot ignore. Nobody understands humans better than humans. And no one travels better than humans.

Even though the technology is highly assistive, it is — at the end of the day — assistive. Every single use case for Generative AI should be critically analysed and harnessed under human supervision to improve customer experience and employee productivity.

(The author is the co-founder of Alike.io, a creator economy-based social marketplace for travel bookings)

Disclaimer: The opinions, beliefs, and views expressed by the various authors and forum participants on this website are personal and do not reflect the opinions, beliefs, and views of ABP Network Pvt. Ltd.

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