Imagine the seamless travel experienceNews / Distribution | TechnologyBy Sponsored Content | July 20, 2017Share This article was originally published on Travel providers are continuing to amaze when it comes to UX and making their customers’ journey as easy as possible.NB: This is a viewpoint by Thomas Helldorff, VP Airline & Travel, WorldpaySelling ancillary services has always been a widely discussed topic, but it is becoming clear that pushing your customer to pre-book all parts of their trip before they travel may not be the best approach. Not everybody is ready to book all elements of their trip upfront – especially months or weeks ahead of their departure.More and more people enjoy the flexibility to create their journey in steps. They book their flight and accommodation and prefer to add elements just before or as they travel. Mobile devices, coupled with access to an infinite supply of travel recommendations, are supporting this trend.Breaking down travel itineraries to more of a ‘pay as you go’ model and offering personalised and context-relevant services during the pre-trip phase is a way to ensure that you capture their attention at right time for them to book these add-ons.Making the payment experience seamless at this point is a crucial component to maximise conversion rates. Asking for credit card details when you want them to commit to an impulse purchase? No! A swipe across their phone is all they should need to do to confirm their booking. It is the ease of payment that gives the travel provider a competitive advantage over not only other online travel providers but also face to-face sellers.Here are some examples:Online travel agentsUsing itinerary data you are quite likely to understand the purpose of a trip – a week-long family holiday with kids vs. a two day midweek business trip vs. a couple in their thirties on a weekend break to Paris.By using AI and chat bots within your mobile app you can engage with your traveller to promote additional travel components to enrich their stay: “Would you be interested in a ballet show tonight, close to your hotel starting at 7pm? We can offer you two tickets at 50 euros each"“Yes please”“Please confirm your fingerprint to book and pay”.Share this quote OTAs have a head start when it comes to ‘pay as you go’ services, as they already have access to a wide range of travel content and established payment flows to share out the revenue that they have collected on behalf of their third party suppliers.AirlinesAirlines have started to unbundle their own products and sell them as ancillary services. But there is just as much opportunity in offering third-party components before, during and after a flight.Using geo-localisation and AI in combination with the airline’s mobile app, carriers will be able to optimise their passenger’s experience and maximise their revenue opportunity. “We noticed you’re not yet at the airport. The gate is closing in 30 minutes. Would you be interested in purchasing a fast track pass through security? The cost will be 10 dollars. Swipe to book and pay.”Share this quote Selling third party components is more challenging for airlines. Often they need to set up travel agency subsidiaries as airline reservation systems are not best positioned to sell, account for and take payments for third-party content.Again, having access to a passenger's stored payment profile is key to a seamless booking and payment experience.The ability to take fully secured Chip & PIN payments at check-in desks and self-service kiosks in the near future will certainly further drive ancillary sales at the airport prior immediately prior to departure.HotelsHotels would need to fundamentally change they way they are taking payments to offer a seamless travel experience – away from a property by property approach to an entity at brand level that distributes hotel inventory and third-party ancillary services on behalf their properties as well as of managed properties and franchisees. “Welcome to Singapore. Your hotel is 26km from the airport. Would like to book a transfer to your hotel? "Scan your fingerprint to book and pay – it will cost you £25, “Would you like to check-in using your stored payment card? – swipe to confirm”Share this quote As hotel chains start to adopt a ‘mobile first’ approach these scenarios will become more likely to happen.The common theme among these three examples is the ease of getting travellers, passengers and guests to part with their money. As a travel provider, you should strive to make the payment process as seamless as possible. Only ever ask your customer to enter their payment details once - all other transactions can be made using their stored payment details.Explore The Seamless Travel Experience in depth in our free report. Click here to access the research.Last month Worldpay and Tnooz hosted a webinar in which the trends identified in The Seamless Travel Experience were discussed. Click here to register to access a recording of the webinar and to see the presentation used during the webinar.Or take a moment to watch this video:NB: This is a viewpoint by Thomas Helldorff, VP Airline & Travel, Worldpay. It appears here as part of Tnooz’s sponsored content initiative.