Three Things Innovation will do for your Travel Business

Innovation will help your travel business to survive!

Recently I wrote about how to bring innovation to the travel industry, and I did so for two reasons: 1. There is a need for it and, 2. Now is the best time to deliver innovation. However, there is one thing I did not do in the previous article – define innovation.

Innovation is often used interchangeably with creativity, even though they are in fact two different things which are related.  Creativity is the conception of the new idea, while innovation is what develops and adds value from that idea after action is taken.

Innovation is needed when concepts and business models become obsolete or ineffective. Look at the current state of the travel industry. It is safe to say that because of Covid-19 some things are now ineffective, and some are either obsolete or on the way to becoming so. Buffets for example, may become a thing of the past; so, what will it be like at restaurants and on cruise ships? What about flying? What innovations will the new hygiene requirements inspire? All these will influence the public’s decisions to buy travel services. What innovations can your travel business implement to thrive despite these challenges? While I cannot say what all the innovations could be, I can say what innovation will do for your travel business.

1.    Innovation advances industries. Off the bat this does not sound like it has anything to do with your business, but it does. Your travel business operates in the travel industry and any innovation added to the industry whether by you or another entity will help to advance the industry. Further, your travel business can benefit from any innovation. Seek to use them to make your customers feel safe enough to travel again, or to reach new customers. When the travel industry began using the innovation called the internet, it advanced the industry.

2.    Innovation solves problems. Problems are great catalysts for innovations. When problems exist, the businesses who find a way to solve them are the ones who typically do well. Currently the travel industry has problems – people are not traveling, hotel room night sales are low and, in some cases, nonexistent, borders are closed, airlines are struggling, travel advisors are in limbo, and some clients are unemployed or have less disposable income. Innovation can solve these problems. What innovation will get people to fly again soon and in large numbers? There is an innovation which can solve this problem.

3.    Innovation drives sales. Don’t believe that it does? Pay attention and see what happens to the first to deliver the innovations which are needed in the travel industry. That person or entity will enjoy record sales, and so will those who attach themselves to said innovations, and utilize them to help customers. When the innovation of online travel agencies (OTAs) started, travel sales increased. Is there room for an innovation which embraces technological ease of use and access like an OTA, and the guidance, warmth and relationship with a real-life travel advisor?

Innovation will do all those things for your travel business, but there is a bonus – innovation will help your travel business to survive!