In recent news, two Australian powerhouses of the travel industry, Flight Centre Travel Group (FCTG) and Travello have come together in what will be music to the ears of tours operators and the in-destination businesses.
The team at Livn are excited to see two partners collaborate in what is sure to reinvigorate and support the tours & activities sector while satisfying the current hyper-local and domestic travel trend.
There is no denying that the tours & activities sector has been heavily impacted by the ongoing pandemic, with tourism across the globe seeing a significant drop in bookings. The International Air Transport Association reported that the earliest we can expect air passenger numbers to return to pre-COVID levels is 2023 or 2024. This reinforcing the importance for resellers and tour operators to reshape their operations to suit the current climate and demand.
Powering partnerships to support recovery
It will take a joint effort from major players in the industry to recover and repair the tourism sector. The latest partnership between Travello, a traveller community platform, and the global giant Flight Centre Travel Group indicates the power of collaboration – working together to support the industry as a whole, rather than competing over market-share of travellers.
Local tourism is the new reality for the travel industry as companies like Flight Centre move into the experiences space. Travello’s co-founder and CEO Ryan Hanly explained why this move by Flight Centre is so significant;
"They've previously done a lot with outbound tour packages, but this [new partnership] is allowing them to play in that domestic space, this hyper-local phase that we are inevitably in for some time to come.”
Flight Centre’s shift towards local offerings opened a new channel where they can continue to grow engagement and customer loyalty in preparation for when outbound travel demand picks up.
Finding life in domestic and hyper-local travel
Whilst for the avid traveller, jet-setting to a faraway land may be off the cards, for now, people are turning closer to home to satisfy their travel urge and the travel industry is finding ways to cater for this.
Figures show that before the second wave there was a surge in domestic bookings, indicating that there is still demand in the market to be capitalised on whilst travellers are regaining their confidence, bringing positive news for local tour operators.
The latest research conducted by Tourism Research Australia backs this up as well, indicating a change in consumer behaviour patterns, with most notable changes being where they travel and the type of activities and experiences they will look for.
Their research further confirms what we already know, that Australians love travelling, taking an average of 11 day trips and 20 days of overnight travel per annum. The desire to travel and explore for many Australians is not going to drop off entirely and they will look for other avenues within their state or country. According to the research, overnight travel will experience a surge as travellers start reconnecting with friends and family, followed by domestic business travel.
Travellers are eager to start travelling again
"There is a huge amount of pent up travel demand. It's a great opportunity for travellers to explore their city, region, or other parts of their state and play their part in supporting local tour operators through the recovery"
And while the downtime gave companies a good opportunity to shift focus on local offerings and invest in new technology solutions without having to halt their operations entirely, now is the time to revisit inefficient processes and operations.
Livn powers recovery efforts with automation technology
Livn was the silent partner that enabled this coming together and has been successfully working with Flight Centre since 2012 and Travello since 2018, which helped with the introduction of the two companies. Travello’s tools are powered by the Livn API, and Founder & CCO Steve Martinez is thrilled to be able to support this development and what this means for the survival of localised experiences;
“We have created our technology to empower travel companies to focus on what they do best. The Travello and Flight Centre partnership is a validation of our solution bringing together the best of each company, the Flight Centre customer base, Travello in-destination technology, and Livn booking automation.”
He looks forward to seeing this new partnership help the sector, adding,
“We are happy to introduce and enable the partnership allowing both companies to protect and build their brands in the path to recovery."