Another decade is behind us, and Skift’s team of editors and journalists outlined predictions and expectations in the tourism and travel sector for 2020. Although some of them may be unusual and difficult to achieve, the most interesting and relevant ones will be presented in this article.
Amazon buys Expedia, TripAdvisor joins Trip.com
Amazon has been interested in the travel sector for years, and next year there is a possibility that this company will enter it through the big door. With Expedia currently in a mess and still looking for a new CEO and CFO, after the duo stepped down in early December, a deep-pocket company like Amazon could buy the Expedia Group and its travel companies "cheaply" companies.
Also, Expedia has had problems with Google, and Amazon is the best example of a company that can stand up to Google.
Meanwhile, Ctrip, which was rebranded as Trip.com Group, entered into a joint venture with TripAdvisor in 2019 to expand into markets outside of China. TripAdvisor continuously develops its tours, activities and restaurant reservations and has top-notch user-generated content. However, their hotel reservation system is used rather poorly. Ctrip could greatly expand its global image and brand and "use" TripAdvisor, according to Skift.
Airbnb launches a flight booking service
Ever since Airbnb introduced the word "flights" in its presentation back in 2016, it has been speculated that the company's entry into the flight market is just around the corner.
Airbnb will indeed launch some sort of flight-related service in 2020, but it will do so in their own way. After all, Airbnb has hired Fred Reid, the former CEO of Virgin America, as the global director of air transport to help achieve that goal. Given that the company plans to launch a public offering in 2020, Airbnb intends to show investors that there is room for growth and intends to become a "more complete" travel solution.
People will think more about the number and necessity of travel
Certain types of travel industry clients are expected to target quality rather than quantity. This could manifest in several ways: people will set the upper limit on the number of trips per year, consider alternative ways of traveling, or combine business and private travel to reduce the number of flights. Travel has so far been largely exempt from conscious consumerism because actions like buying organic vegetables or cycling to work contribute to someone’s quality of life, that is, inspire. On the other hand, not going on vacation seems like a big sacrifice to wealthy consumers. However, with the rise of the so-called "shame of flying", awareness of environmental issues and taxation of frequent flights in the UK, this will begin to change. People will still want to travel, but will think more deeply about the number and necessity of travel. Passing that awareness on to your friends and companions will become more widespread - and status in itself.
Hotel brands are gradually disappearing
We have not witnessed a large consolidation of catering companies since 2016 when Marriott International bought Starwood Hotels & Resorts and thus became the largest hotel company in the world in terms of number of rooms. Accor also rocked things that year with the purchase of Fairmont, Raffles and Swissôtel brands and a stake in the 21c Museum Hotels boutique brand. The French hotel giant bought Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts last year, which has 90 properties worldwide. Meanwhile, rumors are circulating that Marriott or the InterContinental Hotels Group will try to buy Accor. What's going on here? We are far from the time when passengers had very few options where to stay on the trip, and now there are too many of them. Marriott has 30 brands, and Accor as many as 39, and it is predicted that next year we will witness the overlap of certain brands and the consolidation of hotel companies.
Source / photo: Shift; Pixabay