Ramesh Lal

Digital Marketing Executive at FATbit Technologies

Why Mobile Apps Have Become the go-to resource for Travel Activity Booking

"The industry you are trying to reach is currently out of coverage area", - said no one to the ever-growing mobile technology.
From food to retail and from accommodation to travel, mobile technology has tapped into every business over the course of years.
In the name of making life simpler and faster, this ever-expanding technology has changed how people communicate, socialize, and live.
Mobile apps have totally revolutionized almost every sphere, including the travel and tourism sectors. A recent survey found that mobile was the leading platform when it comes to travel research or booking.
While travelling abroad, 85% of travelers use their smartphones to book travel activities.
This has necessitated for travel companies to either go online or build an app to offer services that fulfill their target audience’s needs and demands.  

Why Does an Adventure Travel Business Need an App or Online Presence?

Well, talk about the internet world or apps. Both of them facilitate the on-demand service feature.  With mobile apps, businesses can make it easier for customers to communicate with them, do bookings for rooms or travel activities, and look for great deals.
Let’s take a look at some other benefits that shed light on why an app is an absolute must for your adventure travel business.
Understanding Customer Actions - travel business is a pure customer-focused business, which requires understanding the customers and learning how they behave and why. This helps improve the operations and achieve maximum customer satisfaction. 
Mobile apps provide a deeper insight into customers’ actions as these have better access to users’ personal information. Providing an app to your potential customers, you can learn about:
  • The pages they visited or videos they watched to learn about your services
  • Their preferences and expectations
  • Their search history, including the accommodations and destinations they looked for
  • The destinations they are interested in visiting
  • The level of loyalty of the app user
Build a List of Trusted Vendors - most of the travel agencies offer all kinds of services to their customers, from booking a flight to planning the itinerary and from providing choices of accommodation to arranging a tour guide. If you are one of these agencies, you need to partner with several third-party companies, including airlines and hotels.
While it eases customers’ lives by providing them with everything in one place, it helps you build a list of reliable vendors.
Thereafter, let your customers provide their feedback for each experience, from booking the flight to booking a tour guide to selecting an itinerary to booking an accommodation. This helps you analyze each service further and create a filtered list of service providers based on their popularity and ratings. 
As a result, your overall service quality improves, which leads to increased customer satisfaction and loyalty.
Improve Customer Support and Experience - When it comes to travelers, assuming anything will do you no good. It’s not necessary that a regular traveler won’t need any kind of assistance. Whether they are a first-time traveler or an experienced one, they may need assistance at some point or the other, and might want to talk to you.
Here, an app can make things easier for both parties, as customers can easily reach you and you can easily address their query. You can be available 24*7 and keep customers up-to-date with push notifications. This helps customers develop loyalty and trust towards your brand.
Enhance Customer Engagement - With an app for your business, you can also streamline how customers engage with your brand. Let them use the app to do multiple things such as:
  • Confirm availability of flights or accommodations for their date of travel
  • Set alerts in case they don’t find the mode of travel or accommodation available
  • Book a service in an instant
  • Save payment preferences and details so they don’t have to specify it every time they make a booking or purchase
  • Add preferred services to a cart so they can view and edit it later as per their requirements
Besides, let the users use geolocation to find nearby places that they can visit. You can send push notifications for the nearby cafes or sightseeing places, or offer personalized content considering the current location of the user.
Create an Exclusive Reward Program - who doesn’t like a discount offer, especially when they are loyal to a company? Traveling is already exhausting and heavy on the pocket. A reward program or a discount deal can, therefore, make your customers stick to your brand.
Offer discounts on certain services when a regular or new customer downloads your app and makes a booking. Make a deal with your partners to offer discounts to your customers on particular services. Offer rewards to customers for availing further benefits on flight tickets or accommodation to make them return to you.
Simplify Transactions and Cut On Paper - the introduction of online transactions with the mobile apps has eased the lives of both the travelers and the travel agencies. People now have the comfort of making all bookings from travel itinerary to accommodation from under one roof. One doesn’t even need to bear the headache of carrying a lot of cash with them. They can simply do all the transactions online, no matter where they are.
Alongside which, you are able to cut down on paperwork as everything from the company’s pamphlets to tickets and invoices are available in the form of soft copy. Clearly, this reduces work for both the business and its customers.
Build Meaningful Conversations - With mobile apps available 24*7 today and people engaging most of the times, building conversations with them is no big deal. Nonetheless, creating conversations that continue even after the traveler’s journey is over and they are back to their routine life, are the conversations that matter to you as a travel agency. An app bridges this abyss left in creating conversations that last.
Nurturing customers is a piece of cake when you own a mobile app. Utilize this revenue-focused technology to ask for feedback, share important information, offer more similar packages, and send updates. Therefore, enhance customer relationships and expand your business reach.
“Mobile will play a central role in shaping the ‘day of travel’ experience, enabling travel brands to take customer service to another level by proactively providing travelers with a frictionless end-to-end mobile experience pre, during and post trip”. - Ailsa Brown, Vice President Asia Pacific, Travel port Digital

Why Travelers Prefer an App for Booking Activities

A goldfish has an attention span of nine seconds, yet it is known for being ill-focused. Humans have surpassed this focus span, reporting an even shorter concentration period of about 8 seconds today. All thanks to growing technology!
However, the magic of technology is that where it is a problem, there is the solution. In the age of information, people might lack the time to read the complete article on your website, but they do skim through your content.
A mobile app facilitates this better by providing them with an agile experience, which is why they prefer apps for understanding things and proceeding with booking travel activities. Mobile makes user experience more delightful during travelling.

Top Industry Players

Viator - Viator launched its tour and activities app for free in 2011. The app allows users to find and book trips and activities in their local region. Users can submit photos and reviews, and can make booking payments in multiple currencies.
In fact, the company has built two different apps for iPhone and iPad. The iPhone app is all about close-in bookings, while the iPad app is more inspirational, where you need a Safari browser to make a booking on Viator.com.
Klook - Founded in 2014 by Klook’s co-founder and chief operations officer, Gnock Fah, Klook travel technology app features in-destination bookings, be it for transport, activities or experiences. It also features instant booking.
In June 2019, the app attracted revenue of less than $5k each for the iOS apps and Android apps. Out of the four apps of the company, Klook: Sightseeing was their most grossing app at the time and Klook: Travel Activities was the most downloaded one.
Headout - Popular among technology lovers of 22 to 35 years of age, Headout app works as a mobile assistant for users. It helps them instantly find adventurous activities, tours, and local events. Breaking down different activities in different categories, the app makes it easy to access the preferred experience. It also provides recommendations to users based on their search.
Headout app is available on both iOS and Android.
GetYourGuide - Available on iOS and Android, GetYourGuide app aims at making travel planning easy for users. The app first shows the top ten tours and activities around the world, and then lets users choose a tour or activity that best meets their requirements.
The app can also identify their location to offer activities nearby.  Travelers can get inspiration, review various options and book tours using GetYourGuide.
Peek - Aimed at digitizing the travel activities industry and providing seamless activity booking experience, Peek raised $10 million in 2016. Using the Peek app, users can look for activities by category. The app has an aesthetic appeal, which makes booking an activity even easier.
To help find activities based on individual interests, a personality quiz is available in the app.

Building a Travel Activities App is Fun with FunAway

Apps act as layers for different services. But how about an app that’s a one-stop solution for every travel-related service? 
If you need a good travel activity marketplace solution to build a travel activities app that stands ahead of the curve, FunAway is a user-friendly and fully customizable solution, which you can develop an Android or iOS app or both from and enable travelers to search for activities nearby their locations, book tours or accommodation while never stressing about payment insecurity, and have a completely stress-free travel experience.
And of course, any travel experience is incomplete without it being shared with friends and family. A FunAway-powered app helps users do that while also leaving their tour reviews, which helps other travelers make an informed decision.

Conclusion

Travel apps are a win-win for both users and entrepreneurs. Where people can instantly search for, book, and stay updated about flights and tours, entrepreneurs can leverage benefits such as better engagement and increased customer retention.
Technology has not only changed how travelers learn about the world with convenience, but also how they actually travel. 



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