While 2015 may have been an exciting year for the travel industry, there were plenty of obstacles that had to be overcome, adapting and influencing the way in which the industry is shaped. From more and more travelers opting for sharing economies over more traditional types of accommodation and transport, to new population groups taking the industry by storm, OROGOLD brings you the biggest travel industry shakeups of 2015.
One of the most notable changes in the travel industry over the past few years has been the rise of the sharing economy, with services such as AirBnB, Couchsurfing, and Uber giving the bigger brands a run for their money. 2015 saw a particular boom in this area, and there has been a significant increase in the number of companies that now offer sharing services. Hotels around the world have definitely felt the pressure from this new competition, and OROGOLD is interested to see how this will all play out in 2016.
Chinese Millennials Seek Adventure Travel
Chinese millennial travelers are increasing in numbers rapidly, at a growth rate of 11-25% worldwide. What OROGOLD finds quite interesting is that these young travelers are opting for something quite different when compared to the travel habits of their parents. Rather than seeking out organized tours and hotels that cater to their cultural needs, more and more Chinese millennials are looking for adventure and travel freedom. This population group is also extremely tech-savvy, using mobile booking services, review sites and social media when planning a trip. In return, the travel industry has begun to cater to this new group of travelers, knowing that the only way to appeal to them is by embracing technological innovations. These Chinese millennials represent the future of Chinese travel habits, and OROGOLD expects to see many more hotels around the world begin to focus on their needs.
2015 saw quite a few big mergers between businesses in the travel industry. The American Airlines Group finalized the last of their unions with other airlines and are now the largest airline group in the world. On the hotel front, Marriott and Starwood took steps forward on their merger, which will be completed in 2016, making them the largest hotel group in the world.
There are times when new technology is introduced that has the potential to change the way in which an industry operates, and virtual reality might do just that for the travel industry. 2015 saw virtual reality being adopted by a variety of hotels and airlines, urging others to do the same. Marriott Hotel guests could try out virtual reality headsets that were pre-loaded with videos of three different destinations, while Qantas experimented with virtual reality headsets for their first class passengers, showing them movies, destination videos and in-flight products.
The travel industry has definitely seen some ups and downs throughout 2015. From start-ups based on sharing economies threatening even the largest of businesses to new population groups boosting the sector in different ways, OROGOLD looks forward to seeing what 2016 brings for the travel industry.