1 + 1 = More

Connected travel data can open up new opportunities and experiences

I have a consultant friend who flies every week from LaGuardia to Reagan National. He visits a client in Arlington, a stone’s throw from the airport, and spends one night down the street at his preferred hotel property. For the most part, his trip runs like clockwork.

But occasionally it doesn’t.

Like when he’s sitting in an Uber, with Manhattan morning traffic at a standstill, and he is facing the reality that he will not be making his 9 AM flight to Washington. On those stress-inducing days, a little data could go a long way to improve his experience.

The Uber ride information could be letting his air carrier know that he is unlikely to be boarding his scheduled flight. That could trigger alternative flight options and the assurance that an aisle seat is available on the next flight out.

No problem. My friend is breathing easier.

With a few clicks, he is re-booked, knows his new gate information, and settles in to his morning coffee in the back seat. He views his airline app and sees not only his updated flight information, but also his hotel confirmation, room number and mobile room key for that night, all in one place. Everything is back on track.

Moments later, he gets a good offer: since he’ll now have 45 minutes to kill at the airport, his air carrier wants to know if he’d like to purchase a pass to the club lounge. Today, he’ll take it.

This scenario demonstrates why it’s time to think differently about data in the travel industry.

It’s clear that the discrete pieces of data about my friend’s trip have more value and utility when they are combined across verticals. As discrete pieces of data, the travel picture is incomplete. But combining this information — like Uber location and the departure airport and time — creates a much more powerful picture of my friend’s journey. That combined information allows travel providers to create a much better experience, and a more satisfied customer.

For travel providers, optimizing experiences means leveraging data across verticals in a way that can be controlled and fairly monetized. That’s the purpose and the power of the Journera platform we are building. It’s also the enormous promise of travel’s experience age.

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