EyeforTravel North America 2018

October 2018, Las Vegas

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Top 10: the best and most read tales from September

From airlines investing in blockchain to boosting conversions with content and tackling cyber security, it was all happening in September

We can’t believe it is already October and we are into the last quarter of 2018, but if you missed what happened on EyeforTravel.com in September, here is a round up of the best/most read. 

1. Air France-KLM: blockchain to be driven by ‘use case’ not tech

In an exclusive interview Iris Taguet, an Amsterdam speaker and Air France-KLM’s head of blockchain programme, share insights into how the airline is looking to benefit from blockchain. Taguet says use cases are emerging across the business, from cargo handling to account settlement, but it’s still early days.

2. AI, machine learning, blockchain: for the many not the few

In another exclusive interview, this time with Humayan Sheikh, a former lead investor in DeepMind, and now founder of Fetch AI, we hear that “building a neutral system that is open for any person or company to take part in is currently impossible, and the potential benefits of AI research is [still] closed off to many”. Could blockchain change that? Read on to find out more. 

3. 6 ways to boost conversions with social savvy and quality content

The findings of EyeforTravel’s recent Converting the Customer report are worth a look, and include insights from Roel Verhagen, Eurail’s head of e-commerce, David Armstrong, CEO of Holiday Pirates and Dan Christian, chief digital officer of The Travel Corporation (TTC).

4. Why Middle East travel deserves a closer look

Here, we investigate the growing possibilities for travel brands in the Middle East. And we aren’t the only ones. “Major looks at trends in the area have recently been done by Amadeus, Middle East travel platform Tajawal and Dubai-based resorts and hotels group Jumeirah, based on research by US research and consultancy group Frost & Sullivan and by Middle East consultants, Insights Middle East. Visa, given the widespread use of credit cards for travel payment, has also had a close look, and the ubiquitous Google has things to say too,” writes Sally White. Enough said.

5. Customer-centricity: the new competitive edge for airline RM?

Pricing and economics, and competitive focus are all important criteria for airline revenue managers, writes regular EyeforTravel columnist Tom Bacon. But now a new one is emerging that has been undervalued historically. Interestingly, the new criterion, ranked most highly in terms of important skills for RM analysts, is 'customer-centricity'.

6. How cruise liners are going high tech

The cruise industry is no longer just for baby boomers. In fact, it’s becoming increasingly clear that the quest for millennials’ bookings is indisputably bringing changes to the industry, certainly in Virgin’s ships, at least. Technology is top of mind, something that hasn’t been missed by Stena Line! Indeed, Amer Mohammed, head of digital innovations at Stena Line will be at EyeforTravel Amsterdam about the thinking behind appointing a head of artificial intelligence!

7. Dear Lobby Boy, do you get IT?

Vegas keynoter Esteban Velez, VP of information technology & cyber security at Classic Hotels & Resorts, explains how the group is tackling daily cyber attacks on the network. He also sheds light on the rising problem of socially engineered attacks that can easily mislead staff into taking dubious, and costly, decisions. A key factor in success, he says, is getting the right technology in place, and training for staff.

8. Eurail and Loco2 outline two routes to rail revamps

Marketing inspiration doesn’t always follow the same track, as we find out from Loco2 and Eurail (both speaking in Amsterdam). While Loco2 has revamped its app into something the industry has “never seen before”, Eurail is taking advice from good old-fashioned newspapers!

9. Up and away: the changing path of inflight entertainment

While WiFi on board may not be ubiquitous yet, consumer behaviour is pushing airlines to rethink how they deliver entertainment. Michael Childers, Chief Consultant, Content & Media Strategy at Lufthansa Systems, who also sits on the board of directors of the airline passenger experience association (APEX), and chairs its technology committee, shares his insights in this article ahead of EyeforTravel North America where he will be speaking later this month.

10. 3 counterintuitive ways to drive smart travel conversions

And finally, three tips from EyeforTravel’s Converting the Customer report was clearly something our readers wanted to hear. In essence, to 1.) Have a strong base and test thoroughly, including your own opinions! 2.) Make small changes for big impact 3.) Rethink your product choice and menu placement.

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