Technology is a part and parcel of the modern lifestyle is an accepted fact, and with each passing day, the wonders of this aspect are further strengthened. Technology is so deep-rooted in our lives today that functioning without a smartphone, tablet and of course, the internet cannot be imagined.
The world however, was not so technology driven till about a few years ago. As Albert Einstein once said, “It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has exceeded our humanity.” To all those who have seen the rise of technology can now say that carrying computing devices has made man even more powerful now than he ever was.
That technology has made an individual more aware can be seen quite evidently in the way he travels. Technology has made a huge impact on a traveller’s life. Social media and travel blogs are said to be the platforms where a traveller takes his inspiration from. About 30.8 per cent Indians claim they refer to these to choose their travel destination. Many people are also influenced by family and friends, and about 6.3 per cent from either movies or TV series, while selecting their next holiday destination.
From researching on a destination to booking tickets and hotels and reading about local cuisine, the New Age Traveller has left no stone unturned. According to a study, millennials are increasingly using social media to receive real-time recommendations while travelling, and apps for language translation, ride-sharing, photo-enhancing etc. About 40 per cent millennials consider a photo-worthy location when they decide where to go.
More than 74 per cent of young Indian travellers feel new technology makes their lives easy by helping them book flight/train tickets and hotel rooms online. Travel bots provide people with useful information on prices and availability, thereby allowing travellers to plan their stay and create their own checklists. While selecting a hotel for themselves, people prefer to book rooms that provide them with free and fast Wi-Fi and in-room charging station. About 45.7 per cent Indians book a 2-3 star hotel while travelling, and nearly 20 per cent stay at 4-5 star hotels. Out of this, nearly 5 per cent travellers state that they choose homestays over staying in a hotel, if provided with superfast internet and local food.
With the smartphone revolution, there has also been a sizeable amount of bookings done by travellers with their mobile phones. About 19.8% Indians have started using various mobile apps, with only 7.5 per cent opting to visit travel agents.
Due to such advancement in technology, the traveller is now exposed to personalising his holiday plans. 71 per cent of Indian travellers look for a customised travel package. A research suggests, 48.1 per cent Indians prefer a retreat in the lap of nature, with 15 per cent wanting to spend their holidays lazying around on the beach. Hobby-centric holidays are also on the rise with 13 per cent Indian travellers admitting to being adventure junkies, 12% travelling to satiate the foodie in them and 7.1% wanting to visit places with rich historic relevance.
A check-list itinerary is not all for the Indian traveller. While on the go, the New Age Traveller is constantly looking out for a deeper meaning – to connect with co-travellers and locals, or try different cuisines or live a different life. The travel is no longer restricted to just sight-seeing. As many as 74 per cent travellers say they have planned a holiday or intended to plan one for a complete gastronomic experience when visiting a destination. 71 per cent of them say they even have plans of visiting a ‘particular restaurant’ at their travel spot.
The advancement in technology also allows the traveller to post and share his experiences with other fellow travellers. About 34% urban youngsters have stated that they participate in online engagements to get their travel photos listed as trending on various online platforms. 78 per cent travellers have also created new buzzwords of their travel pictures by tagging a destination to make it popular.
From sharing pictures to write-ups of their travel experiences, the New Age Traveller has gone beyond the traditional mode of just visiting a destination for sight-seeing to soaking in every experience of their travel and then sharing it with the world.
Authored by Mr Amit Madhan, President & Group Head – Information Technology & E-Business, Thomas Cook India....