Interactive tourism, the new way to navigate

    The tourism industry has changed. Through social media use and internet, the focus is no longer on the tourist attractions themselves, but on the mobile tourist, able to actively create his own desired “product”. Your hotel or restaurant is usually not sought-after by new tourists but has to be found!

    Three aspects have changed in the hospitality area in recent years. There is the mobile, the social and the local aspect. With regard to these changes, new booking engines for hotels and apps have been developed.

    Because of the global connection, social networks and smartphones the “new tourist” has forced the hospitality business to reformulate their methods of reception, promotion and communication.

    For the customers looking for a hotel, the research, information gathering and booking is increasingly done by smartphone. But also for the hotelier mobility has become ever more important. Mobility means always being up to date and responsive to bookings and requests, and being able to manage the business by smartphone or tablet.

    The modern tourist wants direct communication with his interlocutor. Real time communication allows for immediate responding to each customer’s specific requests and wishes. The relationship between hotel owner and customer becomes personal and informal.

    Through digital tours and guiding or using interactive icons, users can discover places, attractions, hotels and restaurants through smartphone apps.

    Tourists are increasingly using Social media and networks to find information about interesting places and possibilities to book. They also share their travel experiences, comments and photos with others. They are mobile during the planning, the stay, and after they have left. They want to explore and experience every aspect of their holiday environment. These changed factors have made it necessary for booking engines and apps to adapt and innovate to keep up with this continuing trend.

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