How to prepare for the future of business travel

08 May 2015

A recent report by The Future Laboratory for Skyscanner predicts what travel will look like by 2024.

Skyscanner's head of B2B Filip Filipov said data will be used to transform the way people travel.

"By the middle of the next decade, travel websites will be able to deliver personalised inspiration to the digital technology in your home almost without being asked," he said.

"Essentially, think of a world of travel where the traveller comes first – and the technology comes together to make that experience intuitive, rich and inspirational."

If your organisation undertakes a lot of overseas business travel, wearable devices and travel apps may help employees overcome language barriers and choose entertainment and accommodation based on other travellers opinions

Step 1: Take note of wearable devices

Skyscanner's report identified wearable technology as an area that will transform how people travel. Wearable devices such as watches, jewellery and accessories that have sensors, displays and computing architecture.

Google Glass is a well known version of a wearable device. Google Glass allows the wearer to access information on the lenses such as navigation options and travel information such as flight bookings. 

According to President of Intel Renée James, in the future we will be using on-body devices powered by microchips just seven nanometers in length, the width of 15-20 atoms, that will transform every area of our lives.

Step 2: Use mobile devices

Travel applications are already beginning to transform business travel. Apps such as Refresh collate information on people you are meeting with from social media sites so you're prepared before your meeting. Refresh was also recently made available for Google Glass.

The report identifies developers are creating apps that learn from previous interactions. Desti​, a conversational travel app owned by Nokia, uses artificial intelligence to find reviews based on the traveller's past searches and preferences.

Step 3: Encourage electronic or streamlined check in processes

The report also predicts Near Field Communications (NFC) technology, a tag that allows two-way data transfer between devices, will allow luggage to be quickly scanned, tagged and shipped with travel information already preset.

Biometric scanning, automated and self service processes will also become increasingly common. Changi Airport's new terminal T4, scheduled to be open in 2017, is expected to have biometric scanning, digital boarding via mobile devices and virtual concierges.